North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL

Z_CNHI News Service

August 22, 2013

Supporters drawn to Manning's former home defend him as 'whistleblower'

CRESCENT, Okla. — Hours after Army Private Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking classified documents, about a dozen supporters gathering in the town where he once lived insisted he is a "whistleblower," not a criminal.

They stood vigil in front of the town hall in Crescent, a tight-knight community of 1,400 people about 35 miles north of Oklahoma City.

"We believe the sentencing is cruel and unusual punishment," said Amanda Armstrong, who traveled from her home in Stillwater, Okla. "Bradley Manning is a whistleblower who disclosed information that was very important for the public to know what the government was doing. He should not be in jail. I think he should be pardoned."

Manning was convicted in July of stealing 750,000 pages of classified documents and videos and disseminating them to WikiLeaks, the online anti-secrecy group. A military judge sentenced him to 35 years in prison, reduced his rank from private first class to private, required him to forfeit pay and benefits, and ordered his dishonorable discharge.

Less than a day later, Manning announced he wants to live as a woman.

"I am Chelsea Manning. I am female," Manning wrote in a statement read on NBC's "Today" show Thursday. "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."

The Army responded in a statement that Manning will have access to doctors and mental health professionals in prison at Fort Leavenworth, but the military will not provide hormone therapy or gender reassignment surgery.

Manning's gender was an issue in his court martial, where his defense argued the Army ignored evidence of his struggles with gender identity disorder.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
  • Screen shot 2014-04-18 at 4.44.15 PM.png Paint, doodle and sketch: 3 apps for art lovers

    In the absence of a palette of watercolors and a sketchpad, these three apps can fill in as your art supplies of choice.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Smartphone kill switches are coming

    Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!

    April 18, 2014

  • Why do wolves howl?

    Of all the myths that dog the wolf, none is more widely accepted than the idea that wolves howl at the moon. Images of wolves with their heads upturned, singing at the night sky, are as unquestioned as a goldfish's three-second memory or a dog's color-blindness (both also myths).

    April 18, 2014

  • Biggest student loan profits come from grad students

    This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the federal government would earn roughly $127 billion from student lending during the next 10 years.

    April 18, 2014

  • quake.jpg Pennsylvania won’t take action following Ohio ruling on quakes, fracking

    Pennsylvania officials plan no action despite new Ohio rules on drilling that affect a seismically active area near the state line.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Warren's populist pitch on student loans is off key

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren's populist rhetoric pumps up students about their loan burdens, but she conveniently neglects to mention the real problem - the exorbitant cost of college - much less how she's benefitted from those high prices.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • VIDEO: Boston bomb scare defendant appears in court

    The man accused of carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker near the Boston Marathon finish line on the anniversary of the bombings was arraigned Wednesday. He's being held on $100,000 bail.

    April 17, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 17, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Golf turns into snooze-fest without celebrities like Tiger and Phil

    The Masters lumbered on last week without two of pro golf's biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and fans changed the channel. The PGA needs someone with star power if it's going to lure people back to the game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 17, 2014