Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Sluggish Path to Pardon

Chris Matyszczyk used his Technically Incorrect column for CNET News this morning to observe that the House of Lords is likely to debate and then approve granting a pardon to Alan Turing for his previous conviction on the crime of "gross indecency" (the epithet of the time for homosexuality). Turing's sentence included chemical castration, and his criminal status probably led to his suicide at the age of 41 in 1954. The headline for Matyszczyk's piece (which I assume he composed himself) is:
Code-breaker Alan Turing to be pardoned (finally)
While I sympathize with the parenthesis, I have to observe that the House of Lords has reacted with far prompter "deliberate speed" than the Vatican did in coming up with a pardon for Galileo. It seems appropriate to recognize this on a weekend that featured the opening of a new animated film about a racing snail.

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