Chelsea Manning and the Problem with Pronouns

Yesterday trans Twitter got very, very angry with me. I wrote a Corner post about Chelsea Manning’s release from prison, and the focus was squarely on Manning’s misconduct. Manning betrayed fellow soldiers, put their lives in danger, and did it simply because he wanted to stimulate debate. Trans twitter was angry not with my description of Manning’s actions (though some defended him) but with my description of Manning. I used male pronouns. I identified a man as a man.

Immediately I was deluged with passionate but reasonable tweets explaining to me exactly what was wrong with my pronoun usage. No, wait. That was in a parallel universe …

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