At the weekend, the recently released Manning celebrated her first pride as a free woman
Chelsea Manning, who was recently released after she served seven years of a 35-year sentence for providing documents to WikiLeaks, attended her first Pride parade as a free woman in New York this weekend. The former soldier, who was pardoned by Barack Obama and released earlier this year, was in attendance at the 48th annual New York Pride.
She was there representing the American Civil Liberties Union and was seen on their float, and later, in a convertible alongside Gavin Grimm, a transgender boy who sued his school board for the right to use the boys' bathroom. Chelsea tweeted that she was, “honoured to represent the ACLU at this year’s NYC Pride March”.
Despite Buzzfeed tweeting that this was Manning’s first pride, she replied that it’s just her, “only one since getting out”. However, as an incarcerated trans woman, pride parades through the years have supported Chelsea. In 2013, she was named the Grand Marshal of San Francisco Pride before the title was revoked following criticism. In 2014, a march was organised at San Francisco Pride by Courage to Resist and Chelsea Manning Support Network in honour of Manning.
While Manning’s existence and struggle has been recognised at Pride throughout her incarceration, this one marks her first as a free woman, and it’s only fitting that she marched with the ACLU, an organisation whose mission statement promises to, “defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States”.
Go Chelsea <3