Turing and Erasure
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Politics and Activism

Misrepresentation Is Hurting The LGBTQ+ Community, It Needs To End Now

We can do better.


Judging by sexuality needs to end.

Alan Turing is a name that many know now after the release of the film "The Imitation Game". Benedict Cumberbatch did a phenomenal job of portraying the struggle of the genius who so greatly helped the Allied Forces win World War 2.

Oh, wait….let me stop here for a moment.

So, that's the first time you've heard of him?

I wish I could say I was surprised.

Alan Turing is the creator of the Turing Machine, which is considered to be an early model of the computer.

He was a brilliant computer scientist, mathematician, logician, cryptanalyst, philosopher, and theoretical biologist. Turing played a pivotal role in cracking intercepted coded messages that enabled the Allies to defeat the Nazis in many crucial engagements, including the Battle of the Atlantic, helping the Allied Forces win the war. Let me reiterate...his work helped the Allies win World War 2.

Well, that may be because of one single item: Alan Turing was gay, which at the time was unfortunately illegal. So while he was an absolutely brilliant man, he was overlooked in favor of his coworkers because he was outed. He even had to go to such lengths as to feigning interest in one of his female co-workers so that he could continue his work. Turing was literally almost erased from the wartime history because of his sexuality.

Which brings about the point of LGBTQ erasure, not only in history like in Alan Turing's case but also in film.

We constantly see society's norm of heterosexual relationships--meaning guy meets girl, they fall in love, get married, etc. If there is a homosexual relationship, it's either portrayed as either a fling, a drunken mistake for comedic effect, or a hush taboo-esk situation. It completely, although it's most likely unintentional, alienates anything but the hetero. To give credit where credit is due, shows and films like "Rent", "Love, Simon", "American Horror Story", and "Legend Of Korra" provide snippets of healthy relationships with gay and bisexual characters.

While I completely understand that there are those who do not approve of same-sex relationships, it doesn't change the fact that they are still around. As someone who grew up extremely conservative, I was taught that it was wrong, a sin, so I can see where those people are coming from. However, it isn't fair that communities get overlooked simply over beliefs and opinions. It isn't okay that people are abused, mistreated, and overlooked.

The man who gave us so many advances in technology and codebreaking, a literal hero - and I had to wait for a movie to come out to even know who he was. It breaks my heart that he was simply being true to himself, but because of personal biases and discriminatory laws, he was almost removed from his project. While this may not be the "norm", we need to realize that we need to look past sexuality and actually look at the person. Because when we do that, we can see who people truly are and how absolutely brilliant they can actually be.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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