The Haters Are Going to Love This

Comments

1
Chelsea? What happened to "Breanna"? He seems confused about a lot of things.
2
Prisoners getting special sex-change priveledges? I'm so glad our taxes are being put to ridiculous use.
3
The haters of what, exactly? Slow news days? Late-night show monologues without topical jokes? The dearth of pompous tweets and blog posts about The Real Issue?
4
Even if prisoners had some sort of access to medical gender reassignment (which they don't), it'd hardly be the most financially odious thing about 1) Manning's imprisonment, 2) American prisons in general.
5
Oh, he'll get his gender reassigned by a 6'2" Marine and cellmate named Billy Bob.
6
Let's keep an eye peeled for a crowdfunding of her hormone treatment if the feds should try to refuse it. Whether you think Chelsea belongs in prison or not, she's going to be there for the first at least eight years of her life as a woman. If anyone else fell hard for Laverne Cox's Sophia this season on OITNB, think about Chelsea. Olive drab is the new black.
7
I have my own issues with what Manning did politically, but criticizing her for being trans seems pretty shitty, guys.
8
Fucking a, man. I hope to hell she gets transferred to a women's prison, if they ever spring her from solitary confinement. Jesus, it must be tough to be her.
9
I thought I remembered hearing something about Manning being trans, but none of the articles I read recently mentioned it.

Christ, that's a helluva way to transition, regardless of what you think of the politics or rightness of Manning's actions.

Best of luck to Chelsea for this new stage of her life.
10
I've spent a great deal of my life fighting to let LGBT peoples serve openly in the military. That this little narcissistic prick is the result makes me want to vomit.
11
A true hater enjoys the felicity of self-contained funds of enjoyment, for (s)he can find something to hate about basically everything, so that, to a true hater, almost any news is enjoyable.
12
Maybe he should identify as a cat and ask for a transfer to a shelter?
13
i bet he's gonna be real popular in prison.
14
10, It does seem that Manning has grown rather attached to national attention.
15
Am I the only one who thinks this is suspicious?
He's supposedly taking the name of Hillary Clinton's daughter, too ? Really?
16
Chelsea isn't an unusual name. There are millions of them. Prince Harry dated one. Doesn't have to be anything to do with the Clintons.
17
After reading the comments, I have to say Dan's headline was spot on.
18
It does help distract from the question of why a soldier with any number of warning signs of emotional problems and no need to know had access to the whole entire trove of secret military and diplomatic communications, all the while nobody enforced even the most rudimentary security procedures. Or why so many war crimes were ignored to begin with. With the evidence "buried" in an unsecured archive that any Army Private can waltz into and copy on his thumb drive.

If the deterrent 35 year prison sentences constitutes the whole of their strategy for keeping secrets, how come they can't use 35 year prison sentences to keep their troops from commuting atrocities?

It's notable that in the past government malfeasance was covered up by a wall of silence, or threats of blackmail, or censorship. Now the government uses the tabloid nature of today's media to shift all the attention away from grave problems toward the person. Is Snowden a dork or not a dork? Is Manning a weirdo? Inquiring minds want to know!
19
i kind of don't believe him. he wants to go to the women's area of Leavenworth, where the brutality is so much lesser than the men's. 35 years is a long time. 35 years of rape and beatings by men bigger than me would terrify me, too. prison sex fantasies aside, he might actually have thought this out. also, without the chop-chop of his cock, he can reverse it all when he gets out. in 35 years. smart move?
20
Wait, he wants to be sent to a women's jail? Sign me up!
21
Is this part of his "confused trannie" defense?
22
Wow people. Really?

@10, You're going to lose your shit when you find out what the T stands for.
23
@22 I knew what the T stands for long before you got your first debutante douchebag.
24
@23, Then that leaves "fighting," "serve," and "openly" as the source of your confusion. I guess I over-estimated your intelligence.
25
I think Manning was a dumb chump for the choice on the file dump but I don't really care about this part.
26
@24 "Serve" does not include "betray" and "openly" does not include press releases and grand standing.
27
I'm amazed at how much trans hate is in the comments. Slog, I expected better.
28
@24 - Manning's document dump didn't "serve" anyone and lacked all discretion and editorial sense. Her wanton disregard for fellow service members and civilians in foreign service isn't in the same league as principled whistleblowers like Ellsberg, Felt and even Snowden. She's an embarrassment to the military and to the LGBT community.
29
@5 Wait, what? Billy Bob is gay?????
30
@26, Great, now we can add a few more items to the list of Things Peabrain Does Not Understand. I should have taken your handle as the first clue.
31
@14 In fact, Manning's own voice has been remarkably absent during the three long years of his incarceration.
32
This quoted news story seems to bend over backwards to avoid using any gender pronouns.
33
@30 Instead of hanging his head in shame, he announces he'll make taxpayers pay for new tits. Disgusting.
35
@28, I agree she broke laws and deserves to be punished (35 years is harsh though), but I also believe the military serves our nation's citizens, and we have a right to know what is being committed in our name and on our dollar.
36
The Whistleblower Protection Act does not cover people in the national security and intelligence fields. Before the trial even began, Manning pled guilty to 10 charges that had the potential of 80 years in jail. An appeal won't overtures charges to which a defendant has admitted guilt, so it's unlikely that the sentence would be shortened going that route. Manning's advocates need work towards getting a pardon, or a commutation of the sentence. Manning will have to show remorse for this to work.
37
so Danny, set the "haters" straight....

what should they think about this?
38
Hahahahahaha

Whew Savage! Thanks for the comic relief!

Hey Bradley? Those reruns of MASH you've been watching? You do know Klinger never actually pulled this off don't you?
39
Lots of haters on Wikipedia over her article being changed to "Chelsea Manning". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Chelse…
40
Is Kaitlyn Hunt headed to jail?
A Florida judge will decide the gay Florida teen’s fate Tuesday after prosecutors pulled her plea deal when they discovered she’d exchanged about 20,000 text messages with the underage teen girl at the center of the case against her.
Prosecutors filed a new charge against Hunt, accusing her of “transmission of material harmful to minor by electronic equipment.” In a court filing, the state said it violates Florida law for her to have sent the “harmful” texts to a minor.
Their relationship began when Hunt was 18 and the girl was 14. The girl’s family said the relationship was sexual. Hunt’s family has said the relationship was consensual, but under Florida law, a 14-year-old can’t give consent.
Hunt, who turned 19 last week, was charged with two felony counts of lewd and lascivious battery.
Deal nixed
Prosecutors had offered Hunt a deal: Plead guilty to one felony that could later be removed from her record and two misdemeanors in exchange for community service — with no jail time and no mandatory ankle bracelet.
Now, prosecutors want her bond revoked after the discovery of the texts. They say Hunt violated a February court order to not contact the girl. There will be a hearing at 1 p.m. Tuesday in an Indian River County court.
Hunt had been free on bail while awaiting trial. She was booked into detention Monday night after her bail bond company declined to secure the $5,000 bond any longer and picked her up. Hunt can go free if her family or another bail bond company comes up with the money.
In court documents, prosecutors say Hunt gave the girl an iPod in February that was used to receive and send about 20,000 text messages between the two.
Prosecutors also said 25 photographs were also sent, and secret meetings took place between the two.
“These photographs are explicit and depict the defendant nude,” the documents state.
Prosecutors also included examples of texts they say Hunt sent to the girl, including: “(N)o matter what if they find out we talked I’m going to jail until trial starts.”
The state also said the girl told a detective that Hunt would drive her to “a remote location where they would have intimate physical contact.” The court papers claim that the most recent meeting took place two weeks ago.
41
Where the hell did all these total shitheads come from? Is Slog usually this backward?

Should Manning's lawyer fail to get her access to necessary medical treatment, I think a crowd funding would be amazing. I know a lot of grateful people would love an opportunity to help her in a significant and material way. Unfortunately, it's probably no simple procedure to deliver medications to an inmate, and hormone treatment requires significant medical monitoring to check for heart problems, blood clotting, etc. So it's not like you can just pay for the pills and walk away. Successfully raising the cash on the other hand would be a wonderful story while we watch privacy and Russian violence on LGBT people play out in the media. It may also pressure the Pentagon to revise policies so future crowd funding isn't necessary for inmates who aren't as well known.

The sentence was extreme. And if the government follows the "Scooter Libby" standard, ground certainly exists for a pardon.

In the meantime, much gratitude for what this troubled lady did and has been through as a result. I hope the next time we see her she'll be lookin fine as hell!
42
If Bradley Manning wants to be recognized as a woman, I have no problem with that. I kind of doubt that the federal government is going to allow him to undergo hormone therapy while incarcerated though. I don't think generally they allow prisoners to undergo elective medical procedures.
43
@41--Yes. As with most comment sections, SLOGers lack empathy to an extent that is disproportionate to the general population.

Just imagine the kind of self-loathing that would bring out such comments.
44
The worst thing the media can do in the Manning and Snowden cases is concentrate on Manning and Snowden's personal issues. The content of the leaks is the real story.
45
Remember kids, having a vagina, uterus, and the ability to carry a baby to term doesn't make you a woman but flaying your dick and putting on a dress does
46
@41,

The Scooter Libby standard? Manning was never a toady for the Obama administration. Also, even if people can raise money for Manning's transition, I can pretty much guarantee the feds aren't going to let outside doctors in to treat her or let her get care outside of the prison.

@19,

While trans advocates want transwomen to be housed in women's prisons (although I've never heard of them arguing that transmen ought to be held in men's prisons; can't imagine why not), the federal government doesn't hold to that standard.
47
Don't people think that the reason Chelsea Manning didn't come out as trans before/during her trial might be because her lawyer thought it would make her sentencing worse and the panel less likely to find her not guilty (as if they would have)? i mean duh, geniuses. Fuck, it would have hurt if you were trans here in Seattle with an all gay jury. BTW, the penal system as a whole does not pay for surgery of that kind, and the military does not pay for hormones for trans people, so shut up about that bullshit.
48
@47 She did come out as trans before the trial, it was brought up during the trial, it just wasn't focused on. None of this is news.
49
@48 They framed it during the trial as a "disorder", which, IMO sounds more sympathetic, since it makes her sound ill. They also talked about how hard it was for her and how challenging a time she had in the military, also, I think to garner more sympathy, even if it was true. She didn't ask to be called Chelsea or be referred to as a woman during the trial, in fact, her lawyers asked people *not* to.
50
44, The media didn't seek out this story. Manning released a press statement about the sex change to the media. Obviously, Manning wanted this out there and in the news.
51
#38 ROTFL I love the M. A. S. H. reference!
52
@50: Really? For shame. How dare someone who is a public figure, whose name and image are in the news on a daily basis, ask the media and the world to refer to her by a name and pronoun that reflects her identity? What a little attention whore she is. What makes her think she has any right to her own identity?

BTW, excellent work - you've got through three posts on this topic referring to Chelsea Manning only as "Manning" - no first name, no pronoun. I salute your bending over backwards to show disrespect to a trans woman.

(In non-sarcastic news, the one nice thing about this topic thread is how it brings out the true colours of all the assholes on SLOG, all in one place.)
53
I just want to be left alone! Stop discriminating against me! Thank you. But, before you go, you MUST call me a woman
54
@52

If it makes you feel better for at least a few years MR. Manning will be out of the news in HIS nice cell. HE'LL be surrounded by all sorts of military types who will love HIS delusion/con game and be sure to let HIM know just how much.

Yeah, all in all I think that little traitor is in for an interesting time in prison.
55
@54: Thanks SB. Nothing expresses true Christian charity like gloating about prison rape.

56
52, I was answering a post that said the media shouldn't focusing on Manning's personal issues. (That post too only used last names, and no pronouns.) I simply pointed out that this is in the news because Manning wanted it to be.

I really don't care about Manning's sex change. Your outrage is entertaining though.
57
We need more Chelsea Mannings. The country needs more young people who are idealistic enough to volunteer for the military, who are smart and ethical enough to recognize the immorality of our war efforts, who are naive enough to think that sharing this information with the public will improve things, and who are strong and brave enough to deal with the consequences. The fact that in addition she is strong enough to expose her true private self to the entire world the very day after sentencing should leave us all in awe.
58
Speaking of self-hate, I can feel it coming off the screen whenever seattleblues comments. How much pain must one be in to say things like that about another human being?
59
@58

When you feel that same gentle pity for the various Stranger writers and their virulent bigoted hatred for any public figure they dislike I'll take note.

FYI Manning is a traitor. What would you prefer he be called to describe his treason, a beach ball?
60
@57

Join the military and betray your country!

Yeah, I'm thinking that slogan won't be catching on anytime soon, whatever the young man Bradley Manning did.
61
@59, interesting how you so casually threw "he/his" in there about Manning, after today's press release/news/whatever. Entirely intentional show of disregard that you'd give to anyone in that situation, I'm sure.
62
@59

No. But to a man asking that I call him a woman? With Manning one of two things is true. He's a con trying for some kind of insanity defense or special treatment based on his 'gender identity' or he's mentally ill. I won't buy his con, nor will I pander to mental illness. So HE can ask that I call HIM whatever HE wants, but that lays no obligation on me.
63
So any sort of gender identity (I'm not going to put that in derisive quote marks like you did) that isn't what you think of as normal equals either a con or mental illness? I think this is where I get off.
64
Seattleblues, what if it's not Manning we're talking about? Would you address ANYONE by the gender pronoun they felt described them? I'm assuming not, so let me ask: what harm does it do YOU to show someone that respect or even common courtesy? I'm genuinely curious.
65
I'm honestly ambivalent about Manning's sentence. But I have to think that this announcement is pure cynicism on Bradley's/Chelsea's part. I can't help but think that he is doing this for a few reasons:
1. He wants to be transferred to a women's prison so he may be safer.
2. He thinks that having his trans rights denied in federal prison will allow him to appeal his sentence and therefore get out of prison sooner.
3. He sees himself as a hero of trans rights and is hoping that having his trans rights denied will lead to a huge lawsuit that will lead to rights for all trans people in the federal prison system.

I'm fine with any of these outcomes; I just believe that Manning has an agenda in outing himself as a trans individual. So can we just acknowledge that? It all just seems very well timed and calculated.
66
Not only is the rampant trans-phobia in a lot of these comments disheartening (to say the least) but it's sad to see people here making light of prison rape as well. None of these things are funny, assholes.
67
@64

Anyone unable to understand what a penis or vagina are or what having one means doesn't get vote on pronouns.

Is that simple enough?
68
@67 - I forgot to not feed the troll. Sorryaboutthat.
69
@67: Anyone who thinks the presence of a vagina or a penis is the sole determinant of gender or sexual identity doesn't get a vote on... well, anything at all to do with gender or sexual issues.

Fortunately, the identities and rights of others are not determined by your vote.
70
Chelsea has finally released a video statement:

http://youtu.be/sFBOQzSk14c
71
If I identify as a car tomorrow, you'd better all stop oppressing me and call me pussy.
72

@69
Uh, yeah that's exactly how gender is determined. Why you and your pals want to make black into white and true into false on this issue baffles me. True compassion for the mentally ill involves helping them to a healthy relationship with reality, not aiding their delusions.
73
http://www.thenation.com/article/175855/… She couldn't have made herself a bigger target if she tried; transgenered active duty whistleblower. What, is she going for a record? The hate is radiating off the screen in the comments section, again. You should thank her for wrecking your bully little war, Dan, rob, seattleblues, now you don't have to blame those brave soldiers for fucking it up.

By apologizing for her role in the war she has put herself head and shoulders above the chickenhawks and war apologists who supported that disgraceful period of history. If that's what a 'traitor' is, I'm all in.
74
@18:

"how come they can't use 35 year prison sentences to keep their troops from committing atrocities?"

Because those orders came from the top, that's why. You could seriously set fire to civilians for shits and giggles under the past two presidents and never see a day in jail. The past two presidents haven't yet, and they won't, either.

See, war crimes are only ever prosecuted by the victors, and America keeps that from happening by spending more on military spending than the rest of the world combined. If Germany had won the war, but someone leaked secrets about exterminating all of Europe's Jews, you don't seriously believe that anyone would have been prosecuted, do you? Oh wait, no, the whistleblower. He would have been shot.
75
@ 67 & 72 -

Your belief that gender is determined solely by the presence of a penis or a vagina is incorrect. In addition to various chromosomal combinations other than the more common "XX" and "XY," there are also physical differences in the brains of trans folks that indicate that gender is more than genitalia. Here’s some of the current research:

“These data suggest a pattern (in male to female transsexuals) of activation away from the biological sex, occupying an intermediate position with predominantly female-like features”

http://cercor.oxfordjournals.org/content…

The white matter in the brains of female-to-male transsexuals who have not yet begun hormone therapy mirrors the white matter in male brains rather than female brains.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn20…

And then there’s this:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles…

From the abstract:

” Results revealed that regional gray matter variation in MTF transsexuals is more similar to the pattern found in men than in women. However, MTF transsexuals show a significantly larger volume of regional gray matter in the right putamen compared to men. These findings provide new evidence that transsexualism is associated with distinct cerebral pattern, which supports the assumption that brain anatomy plays a role in gender identity.”

From the results:

“For each of 22 significantly different regions (twelve within the right hemisphere and ten within the left hemisphere), cluster-specific box plots were generated to illustrate the magnitude and direction of gray matter volume differences between groups (see supplement 1 and 2). Altogether, females had the largest gray matter volumes in all but two significant clusters, which were located in the left and right putamen. Here, MTF transsexuals had the largest gray matter volumes (see Fig. 1). For the remaining clusters, MTF transsexuals had the smallest gray matter volumes, but their data spectrum largely overlapped with that of males.”

tl;dr -

Dear Seattleblues,

Nope.

Kindest regards,
Science
76
Here's what I think. The transgendered issue came up during the trial. If you were paying attention, it was there. Chelsea was also out about it to a supervisor before any of this happened. So sentencing comes around and she realizes that while it isn't well known, it is out there, and some people are going to make sure block mates are aware of it. There are plenty of officers who would love to make her life a living hell. So she comes out publicly and big as a last ditch effort to be treated like a human in prison.
77
I'll just leave this here...
http://qkme.me/3vkvea
78
Attention Sloggers! Asking Seattleblues for empathy or nuanced thinking is an exercise in futility. And apparently he has found more of his peers in this comments section than he has at any other juncture. Sad.

@73: Amen.
79
g - You're being taken in by Slog's most prolific registered troll. Feel free to engage him, if it passes the time pleasantly; I did so for some time, and have continued (against my better judgment) even now that I've exposed him as a barely literate and patently duplicitous fraud so many times that he now refuses to engage me at all. But if I can save someone less addicted than I to the public shaming of unrepentant peckerwoods the downward spiral that comes from being so consistently drunk on one's own power over a lesser organism that probably deserves the kind of compassion for one's mortal enemies of which I have run so very dry, it will have been worth it to give you the warning.
80

@79
Top of the morning to you as well.
81
@75 - thanks for the links. Fascinating topic.

Am I the only one slightly uncomfortable with the ethics of pumping someone full of hormones and amputating a functional part of their anatomy because the individual feels that is more natural? Is there a less invasive way to help people who feel they were born with the wrong sex that doesn't involve irreversible hormones and surgery?
82
Can we just take Seattleblues at Her word and accept the fact that we are under no obligation to respect Her wishes as to how She wishes to be addressed. She should be granted Her wish in that regard and henceforth addressed as Ms. Seattleblues. After all it is what She wishes, disrespect.
83
@81 Tim Horton,

No you aren’t. When sex-reassignment surgery first became generally available it was often under strict conditions. Where I live the state will cover it under single-payer insurance but you have to spend six months in psychotherapy and go through lots of invasive testing to prove that you are a real transsexual and not just someone with a fetish who gets turned on imagining themselves as the opposite sex. (At least it used to work that way and maybe still does.) If you didn’t qualify for public insurance you’d have to go to Thailand or somewhere.

These days in most places we’ve gotten less uptight abut it and it’s usually treated more like any other body mod. It’s your body and you get to do what you want with it. I don’t have to understand or even sympathise because it’s none of my business. There’s much less gatekeeping about who is ‘allowed’ to have surgery or hormones or electrolysis (though there is still gatekeeping about who gets to have it paid for through public insurance and people are still going to Thailand).

As the general public got comfortable with this more pragmatic approach, the media picked up on people who don’t feel as if certain body parts are theirs and want their perfectly healthy legs (for instance) amputated.
84
I'm frankly taken aback that some of the people who read Dan's blog are this ignorant about transgender people. For those of you claiming
that trans people are mentally ill and deluded, the current widely-held scientific opinion is that the gender dysphoria (discomfort with one's social gender identity and/or primary/secondary sex characteristics) resulting from being trans is the part that needs to be treated, NOT the identification with another gender itself. This is precisely why the next edition of the DSM renames "Gender Identity Disorder" to "gender dysphoria" and adjusts the diagnostic criteria accordingly. Treating gender dysphoria can require hormone replacement therapy, or surgery, or changing pronouns/names, or changing the way they dress--or any combination of those things. Gender dysphoria is serious--and seriously more painful and even life-threatening than those of you suggesting that Manning is transitioning just to be imprisoned with women--and transitioning has significant social, physical, and monetary costs. Not to mention, doctors will not let you take physical steps without a lot of prior vetting and jumping through hoops. Do any of you claiming that she is faking it actually know any trans people? Do any of you realize how hostile our culture is to trans women in particular?

Regardless of whether you believe that Manning is a traitor, she's still human and deserves the basic decency of being referred to with the terminology that she has asked for.
85
I'm frankly taken aback that some of the people who read Dan's blog are this ignorant about transgender people. For those of you claiming
that trans people are mentally ill and deluded, the current widely-held scientific opinion is that the gender dysphoria (discomfort with one's social gender identity and/or primary/secondary sex characteristics) resulting from being trans is the part that needs to be treated, NOT the identification with another gender itself. This is precisely why the next edition of the DSM renames "Gender Identity Disorder" to "gender dysphoria" and adjusts the diagnostic criteria accordingly. Treating gender dysphoria can require hormone replacement therapy, or surgery, or changing pronouns/names, or changing the way they dress--or any combination of those things. Gender dysphoria is serious--and seriously more painful and even life-threatening than those of you suggesting that Manning is transitioning just to be imprisoned with women--and transitioning has significant social, physical, and monetary costs. Not to mention, doctors will not let you take physical steps without a lot of prior vetting and jumping through hoops. Do any of you claiming that she is faking it actually know any trans people? Do any of you realize how hostile our culture is to trans women in particular?

Regardless of whether you believe that Manning is a traitor, she's still human and deserves the basic decency of being referred to with the terminology that she has asked for. I also personally believe that prisoners should have access to necessary medical care such as this, but then again, I also believe that privatizing our prisons is disgusting.
86
@85 -- Not every transgender person chooses to undergo hormone replacement or gender reassignment surgery though, so whether or not those treatments are medically "necessary" is a very tricky question. Should Manning have access to breast implants, for instance? What about biologically female prisoners with body dysmorphic disorder who are unhappy with the size of their breasts?
87
To all of you anti-trans and pro-police-state assholes: kindly fuck off and die.

@86: Yeah, that's always a tough question. What about people who are severely distressed about the amount of body fat they have - should liposuction be covered? (It is, to believe the misinterpretations of the studies that fail to causally link obesity with anything other than back and joint strain, physiologically healthier to have a lower body fat percentage, not only psychologically healthy for some people.) Then again, most of medicine is addressing ways people are unhappy with their bodies - because they're painful, because they're not expelling carbon properly or filtering blood properly or distributing blood properly or moving in the right ways or whatever. Why do we even differentiate between "cosmetic" and non-cosmetic interventions into the body in the first place?

Come to think of it, I think if we're going to cover any bodily interventions, we should cover all of them. I take it back, it's not a tricky question, it just hadn't occurred to me before this very instant how completely artificial the differentiation of "cosmetic" surgeries is. To be perfectly clear, I am definitely asserting that someone's nose job is exactly as good a use of resources as someone's heart transplant, and additionally that both should be available from public hospitals funded entirely by public moneys collected through taxes.
88
@81: You're not the only one, but that's a seriously transphobic attitude. That doesn't make you a Bad Person, just someone socialized in a society in love with the naturalistic fallacy and the incorrect notion that biological gender is essential or inevitable. The best analogy I've heard for cis people to maybe help imagine how some trans people experience the gender regime is to imagine someone born with an atrophied third arm. While it's only minorly inconvenient, social context would make it extensively socially problematic, and the person may well grow up to think that the limb is an alien part of hir body, and the limb may well cause hir a great deal of distress that would be almost instantly eliminated by removing it. Some (trans experience is not all identical) trans people feel about their bodies the way someone with a third arm would likely feel about it.

Or imagine someone with liver failure. That person gets a liver transplant - irreversible! - and requires immunosuppressive drugs for the rest of hir life. Ze might regret the decision later, especially if ze has to suffer through organ rejection, and decide ze would have been better off dying in the first place. Should we refuse people liver transplants because they might later regret them?

Ultimately, bodily autonomy is key. If someone tells you they want a particular bodily intervention, believe hir. Ze is the best-informed authority on what ze really wants. If ze decides later that it was a mistake, ze has no one else to blame; we all have some regrets, but the possibility of regret simply isn't a good reason to force countless others to suffer, especially in a case where one is just as likely (more likely, actually) to regret NOT having that particular intervention (or not having it sooner).
89
@88 -- Taking out someone's failing liver that's going to kill them isn't the same as giving them gender reassignment surgery and hormone treatments. Neither is replacing their failing heart that's about to kill them with a better heart. Not having access to surgery and hormones as a transgender person isn't fatal, as much as you believe it might be. Plenty of transgender people around who haven't had surgery or hormones to illustrate that point. What Manning wants is another question, but people in prison often don't get everything they want.
90
I'm gonna catch shit for this, I'm sure, but I find the timing of the announcement suspicious.
I don't know if Manning thinks life in a women's prison would be easier, but rest assured that the first chunk of time behind bars will be at Leavenworth -- and announcing a preference like that will attract a whole pisspot of unpleasant attention from unpleasant people.
91
@81 - I wasn't arguing for denying Manning the right to do what she wants with her body. She can hack off both her arms if it suits her. If anything, there IS cultural sympathy for body modification for trans people. The fact that medical boards allow gender reassignment surgey is somewhat remarkable. If someone believed themself to be a bird, a doctor still couldn't admit that person to a hospital to attach a set of wings.

I suppose body modification is a lot like religion. People who believe in Virgin Christ birth and ressurection, complete with the earth being 6,000 years old are considered sane and eligible for president. But if you were to claim the earth was on the back of a turtle and God was a winged unicorn who lived under your bed in Topeka, people would question your sanity. I agree with Hortsman @87 that the difference between a nose job and a sex change is inconsequential. Like religious differences, its a matter of degree.

As for whether Manning should serve in a Men's or Women's jail, that seems like an easy call. Ask yourself whether biological men should be allowed to proclaim their femininity and compete for Women's Business Credits or Olympic Teams.

93
@91 " People who believe in Virgin Christ birth and ressurection, complete with the earth being 6,000 years old are considered sane and eligible for president."

In your country. Not in mine. The 6,000 years old Earth would not pass muster.

Everybody here knows than the Big Bang is, at heart, a Christian theory. Every Christian here thinks that the Big Bang was the Creation.
94
@75: Excellent rundown of sexual dimorphism in brain structure as it relates to gender identity disorder and transgendered persons. Don't expect Seattleblues to acknowledge your post any time soon; he tends to deny the existence of any evidence or reasoning that doesn't confirm his misguided little opinions.
95
@89 Your argument doesn't follow. Being transgender is a very varied condition, and some people need HRT and surgery to prevent depression and disgust with their own body that are so intense that the person is driven to suicide. The attempted suicide rate of trans people is somewhere around 40%, in contrast to the regular population rate of around 12%. The fact that there are other trans people--like me--who do not need to physically transition to feel okay in their bodies does not invalidate the experience of people who really do need it.
96
Note to all haters: Fuck off and die. My best friend is trans; the hate in this thread makes me glad of the decade I spent learning to handle my anger.