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The Powerful Way Transgender Women Are Supporting Chelsea Manning's Prison Release

Chelsea Manning is officially a free citizen. The former soldier was released from a military prison in Kansas on May 17 and celebrated her freedom with a photo of herself in a pair of black and white Converse Chucks. “First steps of freedom!!” she wrote on her Instagram account along with follow-up photo of a slice of “hot, greasy pizza.” Manning first made headlines back in 2010 when she was arrested for leaking a large amount of classified military information to WikiLeaks. Before Barack Obama ended his final term as president, he commuted Manning’s 35-year sentence.

In 2013, Manning officially announced she is transgender to the public with an open letter shared by The Guardian. Manning wrote about her identity, saying, “I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female.” Shortly after, many in the transgender community rallied around Manning and frequently voiced their support for her to be released.

On the day of Manning’s official release from prison, comic-book creator Magdalene Visaggio tweeted out a call for transgender girls to “tweet their chucks in solidarity with [C]helsea,” which led to #ChucksForChelsea, which features photos of trans women wearing the classic sneakers in support of Manning. Keep reading to see a few of the powerful images ahead.

First steps of freedom!! ? . . #chelseaisfree

A post shared by Chelsea E. Manning (@xychelsea87) on May 17, 2017 at 6:39am PDT

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