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A Monument to the homosexual Victims of the Nazis

Appeal

The Federal German capital, Berlin, needs a memorial to the persecuted homosexual victims of National Socialism.

Such a monument should set a signal against intolerance, animosity towards and  the ostracism of gays and lesbians.

In 1935 the Nazis passed a law ordering the criminalisation of all male homosexual activity. To this end Paragraph 175 of the Penal Code was severely sharpened.
The Nazi-„Justice“ system condemned tens of thousands of men for homosexual activities. Thousands were sent to concentration camps because of their homosexuality. In the camps they were usually made to wear the pink triangle.
Very few survived the ordeal of the camps. For homosexuals the years spent under Nazi rule meant a life of enforced self-denial, permanent danger, and fear of being discovered or betrayed.
 

“Those who were murdered should not be denied the one thing, in our impotence, we can give them – commemoration.”
(Theodor W. Adorno)

 

After the crimes of the Nazis, Germany extended its guilt in relation to homosexuals by continuing the persecution. The Paragraph 175 of the Penal Code of the Federal Republic of Germany which remained in force until the year 1969 was the unchanged Nazi version of 1935. The Federal Law on Compensation continued to ignore that persecution based on homosexuality.
Nor was there any  compensation for the destruction of the lesbian and gay civil rights movement by the national socialists.
We are putting forward the case for collective compensation, which makes the recognition of the injustices clear, includes the needs of the work of remembering, and is also dedicated to  the struggle for the human rights of lesbians and gays.
 

The Prisoners with the pink triangle did not live long.
(Reimund Schnabel
Die Frommen in der Hölle
(The  Pious in Hell))

 

With the establishment of the memorial to the murdered Jews of Europe a monument will exist in Berlin that reminds people of the German responsibility and encourages opposition to all forms of anti-Semitism.
In the same way memorial sites to other victims of national socialism are necessary. The separate memorials should not indicate the differences of the various groups, but encourage people to consider the special history of the particular group.
The establishment of a memorial to the persecuted homosexuals is intended - at long last - to provide a worthy form of honouring their memory in the German capital, Berlin.

 

This appeal is supported by the following signatories:

Marianne Birthler
Federal Official responsible for the Archives of the GDR secret police (Stasi)

Dr. Alexander Brenner
Chairman of the Jewish Congregation in Berlin

Frank Bsirske
Chairman of ver.di (trade union)

Michel Friedman
Deputy President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany

Günter Grass
Author

Prof. Dr. Walter Jens
Author

Dr. Inge Jens
Editor

Bischöfin Maria Jepsen
Hamburg

Günter Jeschonnek
Author

Anetta Kahane
Regional Bureau for Foreigners Affairs

György Konrád
President of the Academy of the Arts in Berlin-Brandenburg

Dr. Margot Käßmann
Bishop of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church, Hannover

Dr. Larissa Klinzing
Executive Committee-member of the GEW (Teachers’ Trade Union)

Margret Mönig-Raane
Deputy Chairman of  ver.di

Dr. Günter Morsch
Director of the Foundation for Brandenburg Memorial Sites

Joachim Müller
Advisory Council, Foundation for Brandenburg Memorial Sites

Dr. Lore Maria Peschel-Gutzeit
Minister of Justice in Hamburg

Romani Rose
Chairman of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma

Lea Rosh
Publicist and Journalist, Chairperson of the
“Association for a Monument to the Murdered Jews of Europe”,

Prof. Dr. Reinhard Rürup
Historian, Scientific Director of the Foundation “Topography of Terror“

Prof. Dr. Julius Schoeps
Moses Mendelssohn Centre

Dieter Schulte
Chairman of the DGB (Central Council of German Trade Unions)

Jakob Schulze-Rohr
Architect

Paul Spiegel
President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany

Eva-Maria Stange
Chairperson of the GEW (Teachers’ Trade Union)

Susanne Stumpenhusen
Chairperson of ver.di in Berlin-Brandenburg

Ulrich Thöne
Chairman of the GEW in Berlin

Christa Wolf
Author

and many more...

 

 

 

 

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A Chronicle of Persecution

Artistic Competition

Colloquium on the Artistic Design Competition

Tribute for gay victims of Nazism
Germany is planning to build a memorial to commemorate the thousands of homosexuals persecuted under the Nazis...
(BBC News, 14.11.2003)
continue...

Survivors of a forgotten holocaust -
Peter Tatchell announced the start of the film "Paragraph 175" in Great Britain with this article in "The Independent"...
continue...

Germany remembers the pink triangle men
Germany is finally beginning to acknowledge the gay men who suffered and died in concentration camps, writes Denis Staunton in The Irish Times (March 29, 2000)
continue...

 

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