San Francisco Pride Names Pvt. Bradley Manning Of Wikileaks Infamy As Parade Grand Marshal
Military LGBT activists are "astounded" that San Francisco Pride parade organizers chose Chelsea Manning - a.k.a. Army Pvt. Bradley Manning - as honorary grand marshal.
A military judge in 2013 found Manning guilty of espionage for handing over top secret government documents to Wikileaks, an anti-secrecy group, according to the Washington Post.
On Monday, Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan, the commanding general of the military district of Washington, upheld that conviction - and the 35 year sentence that went along with it.
According to the Chelsea Manning Support Network website, Manning was experiencing gender dysphoria and had "gone through a process of gender questioning and exploration for years." On August 22, 2013, Manning announced...
...that she would like to begin to be known publicly by the name of Chelsea Elizabeth Manning, pursue hormone therapy and be referred to with female pronouns.
San Diego-based LGBT military activist Sean Sala organized a national boycott last year against San Francisco Pride when Manning was chosen as grand marshal then. Sala was quick to criticize SF Pride's announcement this year that Manning would once again be honored:
"I could make a statement grand and tailored for the decision but the bottom line is this: after the national backlash last year, the fact that SF Pride would do this once again is just astounding.
"They will reap what they sow. You reap lawlessness, don't expect it to help you in the end. They have once again spit in the face of the LGBT Military community, all in the name of senseless ideology. Once again, SHAME on San Francisco Pride."
[Peters] says Manning's actions don't represent other gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people in uniform and that another choice would be more appropriate.
Manning, reports The Advocate, issued a statement from Fort Leavenworth prison in response to being named honorary grand marshal.
“As a trans* woman, I appreciate the Pride movement’s significant role in bringing together diverse communities and elevating the public profile of the fight for queer rights.
"I have always enjoyed attending Pride celebrations given the opportunity, and I'm deeply honored to receive this title.”