Chelsea Manning, a U.S. soldier formerly known as Bradley Manning, has asked her peers to call her by her new name, as well as female pronouns.
Manning was sentenced on July 30 to 35 years in prison for releasing case sensitive information to Wikileaks regarding America’s war with Iraq and Afghanistan.
While the issue itself is no longer the main issue up for debate, another plea she is making is now making headlines.
Manning announced pub icly on Aug. 22 who her true identity was and who she has felt she has been since birth.
“I am Chelsea Manning,” Manning said in her public statement after her sentencing. “I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. I hope that you will support me in this transition.”
Since Manning will be placed in imprisonment before she is able to actually begin her hormonal treatment, she has asked to be able to continue with it after being placed behind bars.
While this is a country of free choice to do as you please, the moment Manning was convicted of her actions as guilty, she lost those rights that normal civilians hold for themselves.
Now that Manning is officially behind bars, her livelihood is now expensed by the tax payers of this country. Although the treatment and surgery is not a health necessity or vital for her survival, Manning explained that it is essential to her own well-being.
But should the taxpayers be required to fund the treatments necessary for her transition into completely becoming a woman?
The debate is now whether we allow for this transition in her life behind bars.
She should not be able to continue with this process, since she no longer pays for herself. If hormone therapy was continued, she would have to be transferred to a women’s prison, potentially causing stress on other inmates and potentially threatening her life.
Since Manning is at the expense of society, it is not right that she is able to make these kinds of life-altering decisions about her life. But how do you determine whether or not she deserves it since she states that this is a mental necessity of hers?
Despite what both sides believe, the bottom line is that Manning did willingly commit treason and she gave up her rights and privilege to openly fund this kind of change in her life.
Therefore she should not be allowed to pursue actions that are granted to free citizens.