John Graham Cumming has started an official petition for the British Prime Minister to “apologize for the prosecution of Alan Turing that led to his untimely death.” The petition already has over fifteen thousand signatures.
Alan Turing was the greatest computer scientist ever born in Britain. He laid the foundations of computing, helped break the Nazi Enigma code and told us how to tell whether a machine could think.
He was also gay. He was prosecuted for being gay, chemically castrated as a ‘cure’, and took his own life, aged 41.
The British Government should apologize to Alan Turing for his treatment and recognize that his work created much of the world we live in and saved us from Nazi Germany. And an apology would recognize the tragic consequences of prejudice that ended this man’s life and career.
All British citizens and residents (including expats) can sign the petition online. The deadline for signatures is January 20, 2010.