Chelsea Manning Appears at White House to Protest Trump's Transgender Military Ban

Chelsea Manning posts Instagram Photo at White House / Instagram
Chelsea Manning posts Instagram photo at White House / Instagram
July 27, 2017

Chelsea Manning, a transgender activist and former Army intelligence analyst who was imprisoned for leaking hundreds of thousands of classified U.S. documents, showed up to the White House on Thursday morning to protest President Donald Trump's decision to ban transgender people from serving in the military.

Trump announced his decision to ban transgender service members on Wednesday via Twitter, spurring Manning to appear at the White House the following day to protest the policy change, the Washington Examiner reported.

Manning, a transgender woman who was formerly known as Bradley, posted a photo to Instagram in which she referred to the White House as the "new ground zero of the war on trans people."

Trump made waves with his announcement on Twitter, in which he said that, after "consultation with my generals and military experts," transgender individuals will not be allowed to serve in "any capacity in the U.S. military."

The series of tweets drew immediate responses and criticism from reporters, celebrities, and lawmakers from both political parties.

The Department of Defense has indicated that it is not prepared to implement the policy change.

"There will be no modifications to the current policy until the president's direction has been received by the secretary of defense and the secretary has issued implementation guidance," wrote Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Manning initially responded to the president's announcement by calling his decision "cowardice."

Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison after being convicted of several charges related to leaking hundreds of thousands of classified government documents that WikiLeaks published. Former President Barack Obama commuted most of Manning's sentence in January right before he left office, and she was released in May, after serving seven years in prison.