Source: U.S. Army
After being sentenced to 35 years at Fort Leavenworth for leaking hundreds of thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks, Pfc. Bradley Manning quickly announced a deeply personal decision that moved the debate away from whether the soldier was a hero or a traitor. Manning now wanted to go by the name Chelsea, to be referred to with female pronouns, and to make the transition to living life as a woman.
For those who followed Manning’s story closely, the request may not have come as much of a surprise. Manning spoke about her gender identity issues in conversations with a counselor and a supervisor at around the same time she was downloading the information she would end up passing along to WikiLeaks.
Discussions of sex and gender issues seem to turn people into armchair psychologists and biology experts. Researchers aren’t exactly sure what causes homosexuality, but that doesn’t stop others from being confident they know. Ask somebody at the supermarket and they may answer with the certainty of a solution to a simple math problem.
Manning’s announcement caused some immediate disbelief. Rod Dreher weighed in at The American Conservative: