It's hard for me to begin to understand what it's like to be a woman trapped in a man's body. I can only imagine long hours, long days and nights, long weeks, long years of torment and silent suffering.
This is what I believe happened to that most remarkable woman, Chelsea E Manning.
Only on her way to prison she made a statement that has gone viral around the globe. [Google for the full text of Chelsea Manning's statement and you will find well over 1 billion references]. Chelsea has the ear of the world.
After thanking her supporters during her long ordeal of prison and trial up to now Chelsea said:
As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me.
I am Chelsea Manning. 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.
I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility).
I look forward to receiving letters from supporters and having the opportunity to write back.
Chelsea E. Manning
Chelsea Manning formerly known as Bradley Manning is the US soldier who blew the whistle on US army crimes.
She has been sentenced to thirty five years in prison.
She is a brave woman and should never be forgotten.