Tag Archives: Holocaust

Gay History - May 6, 1933: The Attack on Magnus Hirschfeld's Berlin Institute for Sexual Research and the Nazi “Säuberung” Book Burnings [VIDEO]

Gay History – May 6, 1933: Nazi Youth Attack Magnus Hirschfeld’s Berlin Institute for Sexual Research – The “Säuberung” Book Burnings [RARE VIDEO]

May 6,1933: The Berlin Institute for Sexual Research and the Nazi “Säuberung” Book Burnings

On May 6, 1933, less than six months after Adolf Hitler and the Nazis had come to power, Nazi Youth of the Deutsche Studentenschaft made an organized attack on the Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute of Sex Research

The works of Magnus Hirschfeld, the Jewish doctor and sexual reformer were hardly in line with Aryan ideas about the nation’s sex life: his model of intermediate sexual stages allowed room for homosexuality as well as for hermaphrodites or transvestites. He welcomed racial mixing as an enrichment of the diversity of human life.  The Nazi reaction was unequivocal: “We will not have our people demoralized, so burn, Magnus Hirschfeld!”

On the night of May 10th.  Hitler Youth and right-wing students in 34 university towns across Germany marched in torchlight parades “against the un-German spirit” and called for Nazi officials, university faculty and chaplains, and student leaders to address the participants and spectators. Then, singing songs and taking “fire oaths” as band music played, in large open-air bonfires, the students burned thousands of “un-German books,” taken in raids on public and university libraries, private collections, and bookstores. The events also received widespread media attention – not only newspaper coverage, but also “live” radio broadcasts of the songs and speeches.

The seemingly “spontaneous” demonstrations in Berlin were actually carefully orchestrated by Nazi leader Josef Goebbels, the Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, as part of the Nazi policy of Gleichschaltung (“synchronization”), which sought to align all elements of German society, polity, and culture with Nazi ideology by purging them of Jews and those considered “politically suspect” and by defining their work as “degenerate.”  40,000 people gathered in the square at the State Opera to hear Joseph Goebbels deliver a fiery address: “No to decadence and moral corruption!” Goebbels enjoined the crowd. “Yes to decency and morality in family and state! I consign to the flames the writings of Heinrich Mann, Ernst Gläser, Erich Kästner.”

The era of extreme Jewish intellectualism is now at an end. The breakthrough of the German revolution has again cleared the way on the German path…The future German man will not just be a man of books, but a man of character. It is to this end that we want to educate you. As a young person, to already have the courage to face the pitiless glare, to overcome the fear of death, and to regain respect for death – this is the task of this young generation. And thus you do well in this midnight hour to commit to the flames the evil spirit of the past. This is a strong, great and symbolic deed – a deed which should document the following for the world to know – Here the intellectual foundation of the November Republic is sinking to the ground, but from this wreckage the phoenix of a new spirit will triumphantly rise.— Joseph Goebbels, Speech to the students in Berlin

Three days later on May 13, 1933 famed gay writer Christopher Isherwood wrote:  

“It is a quarter past midnight and I have just finished packing. In eight hours I am going to leave Berlin, perhaps for ever……. I have already made the journey several times in my head, composed funny postcards to all my friends. And now the day which seemed too good, too bad to be true, the day when I should leave Germany, has arrived, and I only know about the future that, however often and however variously I have imagined it to myself, the reality will be quite different.” 

By the time of the book burning, Hirschfeld had left Germany for a speaking tour that took him around the world; he never returned to Germany.

On his 67th birthday, 14 May 1935, Hirschfeld died of a heart attack in his apartment at the Gloria Mansions I building at 63 Promenade des Anglais in Nice.

76 years after the destruction of Hirschfeld’s Institute of Sex Research in 2011, the Federal Cabinet of Germany granted 10 million euros to establish the Magnus Hirschfeld National Foundation (Bundesstiftung Magnus Hirschfeld), a foundation to support research and education about the life and work of Magnus Hirschfeld, the Nazi persecution of homosexuals, German LGBT culture and community, and ways to counteract prejudice against LGBT people.

Gay History - April 4, 1938: Gestapo Announces That Gay Prisoners To Be Sent To Concentration Camps

Gay History – April 4, 1938: Gestapo Announces That Homosexual Prisoners Are To Be Sent To Concentration Camps

Paragraph 175 was a provision of the German Criminal Code established in May 1871 that made homosexual acts between males a crime. It was not until the German Nazi party in April of 1935 broadened the law so that the courts could prosecute any “lewd act” whatsoever, even one involving no physical contact. That move caused convictions of gay men under Paragraph 175 yo multiply by a factor of ten to over 8,000 per year by 1937.

Just when it seemed things couldn’t get any worse for gay men in Germany, on April 4, 1938, the Gestapo publicly announced that men condemned for homosexuality would be deported to concentration camps.

Under the orders of Heinrich Himmler, leader of the SS, the police the Gestapo arrested around 100,000 men suspected of the crime of homosexuality.

In his memoirs, Rudolf Hoess, commandant at Auschwitz, describes how the camp guards would often assign homosexuals forced to wear pink triangles for recognition to some of the most dangerous jobs and they were sometimes separated from other prisoners to prevent homosexuality being “propagated” to other inmates and guards. Judges and officials at SS camps could even order the castration of homosexual prisoners without consent whenever they wished.

Survival in camps took on many forms. Some homosexual prisoners secured administrative and clerical jobs. For other prisoners, sexuality became a means of survival despite the Gestapo’s best attempts to stop it. In exchange for sexual favors, some Kapos protected a chosen prisoner, usually of young age, giving him extra food and shielding him from the abuses of other prisoners

SS doctors also performed cruel experiments on prisoners to “cure” them of their homosexuality. In fact, these tests resulted in illnesses, mutilations and the deaths of hundreds upon hundreds of gay prisoners.

Even though there are no definite statistics on the number of homosexuals murdered at the Nazi camps, estimates range anywhere from 100,000 to 200,000 gay men were detained in concentration camps under the Nazi regime with little chance of survival.

Paragraph 175 stayed in effect in Germany until 1969. Even after the concentration camps were liberated gay prisoners who had survived would be sent to sent to regular prisons to finish out the terms of their sentences.

In 1985, gays and lesbians had wanted to place a plaque in the camp at Dachau, but it was not until 10 years later, in 1995, that they would be officially recognized as victims of the Holocaust

Image result for pink triangle
Image result for pink triangle
Image result for pink triangle

Germany To Remove Convictions of 50,000 Gay Men Under Nazi-era Law Paragraph 175

After decades of lobbying, victims and activists hailed a triumph in the struggle to clear the names of gay men who lived with a criminal record under article (Paragraph) 175 of the German penal code.

Germany’s article 175 outlawed “sexual acts contrary to nature … be it between people of the male gender or between people and animals”. Sex between women was not explicitly illegal.

Although it dated from 1871, it was rarely enforced until the Nazis came to power, and in 1935 they toughened the law to carry a sentence of 10 years of forced labour.

More than 42,000 men were convicted during the Third Reich and sent to prison or concentration camps where countless numbers died or were killed.

The article was finally dropped from the penal code in East Germany in 1968. In West Germany, it reverted to the pre-Nazi era version in 1969 and was only fully repealed in 1994.

“More than two decades after article 175 was finally wiped from the books, this stain on democratic Germany’s legal history has been removed,” Sebastian Bickerich, of the government’s anti-discrimination office, said in a statement.

The sinister Paragraph 175  was in effect until 1969. Even after the concentration camps were liberated gay prisoners would be sent to sent to regular prisons to finish out the terms of their sentences.

Learn more about paragraph 175 and watch the award winning documentary of the same name by clicking HERE

 

VP Mike Pence Visits Dachau Nazi Concentration Camp In Germany, Makes No Formal Comment About Victims

VP Mike Pence Visits Dachau Nazi Concentration Camp In Germany, Makes No Formal Comment

 

Mike Pence visited former Nazi concentration camp on Sunday and was joined by a survivor of the camp and other officials. The US vice president apparently did not speak publicly during his tour and recognize the victims of the infamous death camp.

Pence was in Germany to speak at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday (18 February) and traveled to Brussels later on Sunday for meetings with Nato and EU officials.

During his Dachau visit which Pence made with his wife Karen and eldest daughter Charlotte, a tour of the former concentration camp, passing through the wrought iron gate bearing the inscription, “Arbeit macht frei“, or “Work sets you free”.

The group walked around the prison yard and inspected a map showing the camps around Germany and various Nazi-occupied countries in Europe.

The Pences also met with Karl Freller, director of the Foundation of Bavarian Memorial Sites as well as Abba Nabor, a Jewish Lithuanian, a survivor of the camp who now lives in Israel.

When questioned as to why there was no acknowledgement of the six million Jews killed during the Holocaust, Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks said “we are an incredibly inclusive group and we took into account all of those who suffered”, with Holocaust victims including “priests, gypsies, people with mental or physical disabilities, communists, trade unionists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, anarchists, Poles and other Slavic peoples, and resistance fighters”.

Please note how gays and lesbian victims of the holocaust were left out of the above statement.

The Trump/Pence presidential campaign had the full support and backing of the White Supremacist and Neo-Nazi parties.

 

Tel Aviv, Israel Unveils Monument To LGBT Victims of the Nazi Holocaust

Tel Aviv lgbt memorial

The city of Te Aviv, Israel unveiled a memorial Friday honoring gays and lesbians persecuted by the Nazis, the first specific recognition in Israel for non-Jewish victims of the Holocaust.

A concrete, triangle-shaped plaque details the plight of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people under Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. It resembles the pink triangles Nazis forced gays to wear in concentration camps during World War II and states in English, Hebrew and German: “In memory of those persecuted by the Nazi regime for their sexual orientation and gender identity.”

Unlike their persecution of Jews, the Nazis viewed being gay as a “public health problem” since gay German men did not produce children,

Israel was born out of the Holocaust and its 6 million Jewish victims remains seared in the country’s psyche. Israel holds an annual memorial day where sirens stop traffic across the nation, it sends soldiers and youth on trips to concentration camp sites and often cites the Holocaust as justification for an independent Jewish state so Jews will “never again” be defenseless.

But after 70 years, openly gay Tel Aviv councilman Eran Lev thought it was time to add a universal element to the commemoration.

“The significance here is that we are recognizing that there were other victims of the Holocaust, not just Jews,” said Lev, who initiated the project during his brief term in office.

The Nazis kept files on 100,000 people, mostly men. But the excact number of German LGBT sent to concentration camps and killed will never be known but leading scholar Rüdiger Lautmann believes that the death rate of homosexuals in concentration camps may have been as high as 60%.  LGBT prisoners were subjected to harsher labor than smaller targeted groups, such as the political prisoners, and furthermore suffered a much higher mortality rate. They also lacked a support network within the camps and were ostracized in the prison community. Homosexuals, like the mentally ill and many Jews and Roma, were also subjected to medical experimentation in the hopes of finding a cure to homosexuality at the camp in Buchenwald

After the war, the treatment of homosexuals in concentration camps went unacknowledged by most countries, and some men were even re-arrested and imprisoned based on evidence found during the Nazi years. It was not until the 1980s that governments began to acknowledge what happened to the LGBT individuals and not until 2002 that the German government apologized to the gay community . In 2005, the European Parliament adopted a resolution on the Holocaust which included the persecution of homosexuals.

The Tel Aviv landmark joins similar memorials in Amsterdam, Berlin, San Francisco and Sydney dedicated to gay victims of the Holocaust.

Let us never forget and never forget.

Source: LGBTNation
Gay History - April 4, 1938: Gestapo Announces That Gay Prisoners To Be Sent To Concentration Camps

Moscow Bans Tribute To Gay Holocaust Victims Because It Would Promote Homosexuality

Pink Trangle prisoners

The city of Moscow has banned a commemorative tribute to the gay, lesbian and transgender victims of the Holocaust because it could “influence” children on homosexuality.

Via Gay Star News:

Around 20 participants applied to hold a peaceful event in Kudrinskaya Square in Moscow on 5 November. The intention of the tribute was to also spread the message about not repeating past mistakes and ensuring something like the Holocaust never happens again. But the authorities rejected the application, saying paying tribute to gay victims of Nazi Germany could potentially “influence” children on homosexuality.

Additionally Moscow has recently denied approval of two LGBT rallies. One to highlight the importance of combating homophobia in sport and the other for Russia to join the Schengen Agreement to allow the LGBT community freedom of movement in a single visa.

But remember the International Olympic Committee thinks Russia and FABULOUS and a perfect choice for the 2014 Games.  Just like the IOC did in 1936 when they were held in Berlin under Adolf Hitler.