Chelsea Manning, formerly known as Bradley Manning, has won the right to “she” and “her”.
In a court order issued on Wednesday, it was made adamantly clear that henceforth, Chelsea Manning must be referred to in female or gender-neutral terms.
The court order stated, “All future formal papers filed before this court and all future orders and decisions issued by this court shall either be neutral, eg Private First Class Manning or appellant, or employ a feminine pronoun.”
However, Chelsea Manning will remain “Bradley Manning”, or “he” and “him”, for the previous legal proceedings before his/her transition.
Chase Strangio, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union, which was involved in Manning’s defense, said, “The court rightly recognized that dignifying Chelsea’s womanhood is not the trivial matter that the government attempted to frame it as.”
Chelsea Manning, who was convicted in 2013 of handing over more than 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks, has already won the right to the name change, the hormone therapy for her transition, and even women’s underwear.
“This is an important distinction for Chelsea, both personally and legally,” Chelsea Manning’s attorney, Nancy Hollander, told People. “But it’s most important on a personal level.”
“You would not like being a called a man,” Hollander said to a female journalist. “And neither does she.”
Despite all of her victories, Chelsea Manning hasn’t won the right to live in female quarters where she is imprisoned at Ft. Leavenworth, Hollander said. But it seems Chelsea Manning won’t fight that.
Hollander said of Chelsea Manning, “She is housed with male prisoners, and will continue to be housed with them.”
She added, “She has no problems with her fellow prisoners. She is doing well. As well as one can when in prison.”
What do you think of Chelsea Manning’s unprecedented gender transition in military prison and her subsequent victories?