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Do you agree with posthumous awards?

Gordon Brown has apologised for the treatment of computer pioneer Alan Turing following an online petition. Is there still a place for posthumous pardons and apologies?

Mr Turing is best known for his code-breaking work at Bletchley Park during WWII. He also made significant contributions to the emerging fields of artificial intelligence and computing.

However, in 1952 he was prosecuted for gross indecency after admitting a sexual relationship with a man. Two years later he killed himself.

Do you agree with Gordon Brown's apology? Should Alan Turing be given a posthumous knighthood? Would you like to see anyone else receive a similar pardon?

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Published: Friday, 11 September, 2009, 10:27 GMT 11:27 UK

All comments as they come in

Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 23:46 GMT 00:46 UK

No.

English, not British, London, England

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 23:08 GMT 00:08 UK

A posthumous knighthood seems rather ridiculous. The apology is OK but decades too late. The state prosecuted a man for something that must have affected 100s if not 1000s of men, & in Turing's case led him to commit suicide (I believe *that* was a crime in those days).

Turing needs to be remembered, because of his codebreaking work - with many others - at Bletchley, & also for his work developing the world's first real computer. I have to say a knighthood is devalued these days.

[JonnyStort]

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 22:56 GMT 23:56 UK

Just who is Brown apologising to? Alan Turing has been dead for over fifty years after being chemically castrated. No amount of words or deeds will do him any good and it is sad for us to believe otherwise.

His whole story should be told in schools as a reminder that even our greatest heroes can fall foul of petty politicians and their stupid laws.

fillandthrowpist always, United Kingdom

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 22:42 GMT 23:42 UK

I am pleased that this has been put on the record as an appalling injustice. A knighthood is certainly justified for the man who conceived the "Turing test". Particularly as we will almost certainly be using it in anger in the coming decade.

jeremy slawson, plymouth, United Kingdom

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 22:35 GMT 23:35 UK

yep,about time,the people at bletchley should all be celebrated and commerated,and Alan Turing was a real heroe in all the best ways that title connotes,good on u everyone in the government who realised this...!

david robert lloyd, llandudno, United Kingdom

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 22:10 GMT 23:10 UK

I don't think they way these things are delivered is the correct method. I had some posthoumous a couple of months ago and by the time it got delivered to my house it had gone off and started to seep through the envelope.

[exasperated_durham]

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:53 GMT 22:53 UK

Can we have one for Oscar Wilde while we're at it?

Kathryn Jones, Lancaster, United Kingdom

I wish I'd said that!

Stuart Wilson, Baughurst

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:50 GMT 22:50 UK

You want to make a monument for those who fought for our freedom? No little monument or a few unfulfilled words and pretence is going to do it. A fitting monument would be that every nation, police their government, military, politics and economic system. Make this your priority, make it stand for what it is suppose to stand for and nothing other. Governments have become the true Big Brother stealing, lying, terrorizing, torturing, enslaving, murdering and destroying the minds of the people.

Lee Sanders Jr, Phenix City, AL. North America, United States

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:47 GMT 22:47 UK

Pointless

Artuk, Dawlish

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:36 GMT 22:36 UK

I think that government should stay well away from areas they are not needed, not wanted and have nothing to do with them. And that is almost everything they tackle nowadays.

How anyone who is a member of that disreputable club called parliament can even begin to thing they have the moral authority to make any pronouncements based on decency, ethics or conscience is beyond me.

Sam Slade, Colchester, United Kingdom

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:25 GMT 22:25 UK

This is, surely a question that should be left alone.
Alan Turing was a most brilliant man and without him the Second World War could have had very different consequences.
However, he was a man of his time and that time did not allow the excesses that are fully accepted today. So, maybe it is best to let sleeping dogs lie. No, it would not be right to grant a knighthood to Turing. One might as well also consider Oscar Wilde in the same context - and no doubt many more.

David Michael, London, United Kingdom

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:23 GMT 22:23 UK

It shouldn't have taken a petition,but there again that's how blind this Labour government is.One thing I won't be able to do is pardon them for the last 15 years of misery.

harry, uk

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:16 GMT 22:16 UK

I most certainly do agree that an apology for Alan Turing is long over due . The more I read about this genious the more I feel so sad at the way he was treated. I have never heard for instance that a cure for homosexuality was injections , considered appropiate in place of a prison sentence which apparently he accepted and these had an awful effect on him. To think such behaviour by authority has happened in the quite recent past alarms me . Just what else goes on behind closed doors ?

johnbournemouth, Bournemouth

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:11 GMT 22:11 UK

Surely a more fitting memorial would be an accurate report by the BBC - with more than the impact-laden flash and dazzle of the cracking of Enigma. Turing;

- Designed the first stored computer programme
- Addressed the issue of artificial intelligence
- Invented the Turing Test, designed to differentiate between man and machine
- Was an exceptional athlete
- Invented the 'Turing Machine' - a method of computing still development today

Please tell the whole story!

TH, Liverpool

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Added: Saturday, 12 September, 2009, 21:00 GMT 22:00 UK

It's a shame Gordon CANT apologise for everything him, Tony & NuLabour has done to this country!!

Saying sorry to something that happened many decades ago is nice for the family/friends etc... but Gordon won't ever say sorry for completely messing up this country!

Jon, London

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DEBATE STATUS

Total comments:
718
Published comments:
621
Rejected comments:
97
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