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Monday, 18 July 2011

Royal recognition for gay atheist code breaker

The UK gay Humanist charity the Pink Triangle Trust (PTT) has warmly welcomed the recent unveiling by the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh of a memorial at Bletchley Park to honour those who played a pivotal role in decryption operations during World War II, notably the celebrated gay codebreaker and founder of the modern computer Alan Turing who was referred to in the Queen’s speech.

Commenting on this event the PTT’s Secretary George Broadhead said: “It is great that these people who played such a vital part in ensuring allied victory in the last world war should be honoured in this way. For we gay Humanists, most of whom identify as atheist, it is especially welcome that the gay mathematical genius Alan Turing, who was himself a committed atheist, was given special recognition.

“Turing was treated abominably by the authorities when he was prosecuted for having a gay sexual relationship in 1952. He was obliged to undergo chemical castration and later committed suicide. He has since been rehabilitated. A statue of him was erected in Manchester, where he last lived and worked, and following a campaign led by Humanists Richard Dawkins, Stephen Fry and Peter Tatchell, former Prime Minister Gordon Brown made an official apology on behalf of the government. However, nothing can compensate for the tragic loss of such a genius.”

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