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Topic Title: Alan Turing - pardon petition
Topic Summary: Sign the petition to grant Turing a pardon fow his 1952 conviction of Gross Indecency which directly lead to his suicide
Created On: 07 December 2011 01:25 PM
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 07 December 2011 01:25 PM
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slove

Posts: 19
Joined: 30 August 2005

i'm sure many of you are aware of the move to grant Alan Turing a pardon for his 1952 conviction for Gross Indecency and his treatment thereafter.

This is certainly a contentious issue, but I've always felt that a large part of the reason why Turing is not as well know as he should be with the general public is because his reputation was tainted by this conviction. Its about time he got the recognition he deserved as a great scientist, engineer and father of computing.

If you want to sign the petition you can do so here - http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/23526http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/23526

*p.s. I am posting this in a personal capacity as a member of the IET and not as an employee. The opinions expressed above are my personal opinions and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the IET.

-------------------------
Stewart Love
Manager, Digital Services
The Institution of Engineering and Technology

Edited: 07 December 2011 at 01:32 PM by slove
 08 December 2011 10:00 AM
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CliveM

Posts: 228
Joined: 09 October 2002

Stewart,

Whilst I agree that Turing doesn't get the recognition he deserves, it was always my understanding that a pardon was only granted when someone had been wrongly convicted. Is this the case here?

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Clive Maude
 08 December 2011 11:04 AM
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amillar

Posts: 1918
Joined: 28 May 2002

See page 15 of http://webarchive.nationalarch.../royal-prerogative.pdf for a description of the Royal Pardon, including "Free pardons were traditionally granted where new evidence came to light which demonstrated conclusively that no crime was committed or that the individual did not commit the offence." It's not clear how this relates to on offence which was considered a crime at the time of conviction but is not now. Maybe if anyone knows the details of the pardon given to soldiers executed in WW1 for cowardice they could comment?

Personally I don't think it does hold back Turing's reputation now, I think the issue is more that no-one (outside us geeks) is terribly interested in who invented anything - particularly if they are a "historical" figure. (As an adoptive Cornishman don't get me started on who invented the steam locomotive!) But I do think it is an important story as to how we should be aware of the tragic and stupid consequences of blind intolerance.

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Andy Millar CEng MIET CMgr MCMI

http://www.linkedin.com/in/millarandy

"The aim of argument, or of discussion, should not be victory, but progress." Joseph Joubert
 08 December 2011 01:50 PM
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slove

Posts: 19
Joined: 30 August 2005

No, he was correctly jailed, as per the law of the land at the time.

Yes, this is a horribly relativist move in light of modern attitudes. No, I don't think that everybody who has been convicted under this law, and many others which now seem anachronistic, should be pardoned.

However, in this case I agree with it in a symbolic sense. Even if he is not granted a pardon but get some official recognition from this then I'll be happy.

-------------------------
Stewart Love
Manager, Digital Services
The Institution of Engineering and Technology
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