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For most of the medieval and early modern times death was the penalty for homosexual acts Due to the impact of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution many German States starting with Bavaria decriminalized homosexuality Prussia was the exception It heightened legislation concerning this issue which eventually was carried over in 1871 on to the Reich as a whole Burleigh and Wipperman 184 Homosexuals were never recognized as victims of Nazi persecution in either of the post-war German states This is despite the fact that while the concentration camps they were branded with the pink triangle signifying sexual preference They were harshly mistreated by camp guards and fellow inmates Two main factors produced this unsatisfactory state of affairs For one it is a reflection of mass widespread dislike toward homosexuals and their indecisiveness to prosecute their instigators due to fear of rejection among their peers towards their preference Secondly the interpretation of paragraph 175 of 1871 Reich criminal code criminalizing acts of indecency as well as sexual intercourse between two men was not repealed until 1969 This meant that homosexuals who had been persecuted and sent to concentration camps could now be punished under the same law Also homosexuals were not counted among Hitlers victims Neither post-war German state had a relevant record in this area Burleigh and Wipperman 183 In 1935 the Reichstag amended paragraph 175 of the Criminal Code to close what were seen as loopholes in the current law The new law had three parts One of them stating A male who commits a sex offense with another male or allows himself to be used by another male for a sex offense shall be punished with imprisonment Very little has been written about the tens of thousands of homosexuals who were the damnedest of the damned the outcasts among the outcasts in the concentration camps There are really only estimates of figures During the twelve years of Nazi rule nearly 50000
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