Courtesy of some comments on a Slashdot post, I have just learned that Alan Turing was homosexual. To which I say, “Good for him.” According to a biography on him, he was, sadly, chemically castrated in 1952. What a way to treat the man who pretty much invented modern computing machines! The irony is not lost that so many who despise and discriminate against homosexuals have to thank someone who would be the target of their hate for the very technology that they use to spread their message so efficiently today.
Hopefully the day will come when our institutions stop worshipping faux heros and start truly appreciating men like Turing for their real accomplishments in the advancement of our collective knowledge.
At the personal level, I find I am often surprised when I learn that a person I respect is different than I am in some such unperceivable way. It comes not from the previously unknown knowledge, but instead from the self-realization that it does not affect my opinion of them whatsoever. Why do I find myself surprised at my own non-bias? Is it because my mind naturally revolts against the idea, thus proving that it is a sin, as the hate-peddlers might suggest? Or is it because my culture has spent so much energy talking about it that it has been ingrained into my subconcious mind, that it must matter, and thus I am merely surprised by my own empirical evidence to the contrary?
I’d have to say the latter, especially since I don’t believe in that whole sin thing.
Oh, and thanks Mr. Turing for giving me a job.