Add PFC Bradley Manning to the list of Grand Marshals for NYC Pride
PFC Bradley Manning is an openly gay US Army Intelligence specialist currently on trial for revealing human rights abuses by the US military in the Middle East and Guantanamo Bay.
This released information has had a positive impact on the world, including the LGBT community:
1) Whistleblowing is free speech that is protected under the US Constitution. Confidential information is shared with journalists around the world every day. The Justice Department's aggressive pursuit of accused whistleblowers like Bradley Manning is an attempt to politically regulate journalism.
2) Policy experts widely agree that the diplomatic cables that Bradley Manning is accused of releasing helped grow support for democratic revolts across the Arab world.
3) Americans' liberties become more secure when our government becomes less able to hide its abuses from public scrutiny. Most of this "classified information" should already have been public so that we as Americans can hold our government accountable for its actions on US soil and overseas.
Due process and assumed innocence are core American values, but PFC Bradley Manning has already been subjected to unlawful pre-trial punishment like solitary confinement, sometimes naked and without access to sunlight or exercise or social interaction.
PFC Bradley Manning is a brave LGBT hero who has stood up for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning and intersex people around the world. He should be added to the list of NYC Pride Grand Marshals, which currently includes Edith Windsor, Harry Belafonte and Earl Fowlkes.
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