At 3 am this morning, Chelsea Manning was released from prison. Initially sentenced to more than 35 years on 22 counts, her sentence was commuted by President Obama prior to his leaving office. Manning was convicted of espionage, regarded by some as a hero whistleblower, and others, as a traitor. After her conviction, she changed her name to Chelsea and identified as transgender.
In a statement released to the public, Manning acknowledged that she has been given a new beginning,
For the first time, I can see a future for myself as Chelsea. I can imagine surviving and living as the person who I am and can finally be in the outside world.
Manning was kept in an all male prison the entire term of her sentence. In the three years she was incarcerated, she attempted to kill herself twice. What once seemed hopeless, is now a new day for her.