Chelsea Manning explained why she leaked military secrets, talked about her gender transition and thanked former President Barack Obama for commuting her sentence in her first public interview outside of prison.
Known as Pvt. Bradley Manning before transitioning from being a man to living as a woman, Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking military secrets. She served seven years of her sentence before most of the rest was commuted by Obama.
“Thank you for giving me a chance,” Manning said in the ABC News “Nightline” interview. “That’s all I wanted.”
When asked about hormone therapy, Manning said, “It’s literally what keeps me alive.” Manning was the first military prisoner to receive hormone therapy treatments related to gender transition. “It keeps me from feeling like I’m in the wrong body,” she told ABC News. “I used to get these horrible feelings like I just wanted to rip my body apart.”
On Monday’s “Pat & Stu,” Pat Gray, Stu Burguiere and Jeffy Fisher watched part of the interview and pointed out that Manning should also be thanking taxpayers since government funding covered her transition.
Stu noted that if Manning’s transgender identity had not sparked a firestorm, she would not have been released from prison.
“Without the gender stuff, there’s no way Bradley Manning leaves prison,” he said.