Gender Warriors in Support of Chelsea Manning



Volume 3, Issue 13
February 7, 2018



MW: If you support Chelsea Manning in her release of restricted government documents, could you please come on stage?

Malic instructs participating audience members to assume a plank position. All NEOS (except for IC and BD) and audience members assume a plank position.

BD: The plank is an isometric core strength exercise that involves maintaining a difficult position for extended periods of time. If you practice—

ALL: It’s not that hard.

IC:  Chelsea Manning was sentenced to 35 years in a military prison after releasing the largest set of restricted documents ever leaked to the public.

BD: The current world record for the plank position is 3 hours, 7 minutes and 15 seconds.  The record was set by George Hood, who is a former Marine. People call him a hero.

IC: People call Chelsea Manning a traitor.

BD: People call Chelsea Manning the wrong name and “he,” even after she released a statement specifically asking to be called “Chelsea” and “she.”

ALL: It’s not that hard.

MW: Two minutes is not enough time to address the bigger issues. We could talk about government secrecy or how the U.S. prison system is basically government-funded housing for marginalized people. We could about all the American political prisoners who remain behind bars.

BD: But let’s start with something basic.

IC: Let’s start with the name Chelsea.

BD: Let’s start with the pronoun “she.”

IC: Let’s practice: Chelsea. She.

ALL: Chelsea. She.

BD: The plank provides a base for all forms of exercise.  

IC: Referring to a transgender person by the right name and pronoun is the most basic sign of respect.

MW: It’s not that hard. And people who still won’t use her name because they’re scared. They’re scared that the greatest threat to government secrecy and control is one of our people—a gender warrior whose very identity threatens political and social organization.

BD: But really, who would be better for the job?

IC watches the stop watch until it hits 2 minutes.

IC: Time!All NEOS drop out of their plank position.


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Volume 3, Issue 13
February 7, 2018