Okay, I hadn't factored this into my Bradley Manning assessment yesterday:
Pfc. Bradley Manning may want to live as a woman, but the young man sentenced to prison this week for leaking hundreds of thousands of secret government documents will face a difficult — if not impossible — task of beginning to switch his gender behind bars.
Manning, 25, announced through his lawyer on TODAY Thursday that he intends to request hormone therapy while at Fort Leavenworth prison.
"I am Chelsea Manning. I am female," the Army private wrote in a statement read on TODAY Thursday.
Now that DADT is history and gay servicemembers can serve openly, the next looming battle will be around transsexualism in the military and to what extent the military must accommodate it.
The services will fight to keep transsexualism as a reason to exclude people from service, but I'm not sure that Secretary of Defense Hagel will support them. Ditto for Obama. I'm also not sure how the issue relates to regulations that the DoD is free to change on its own and what may be dictated by statute, which in normal administrations means Congress must get involved.
In any case, get ready for the lawsuits around allowing transsexuals in the military to openly serve and around getting the military to pay for Manning's treatments while incarcerated, and eventually treatments for any other transsexuals serving in the military.