Ask Paul B: From Superhero of the World to Suicide? Imitation Game Recognizes the Superhero

Dear Paul B Readers,

As I watched yet another otherwise boring Academy Awards show, I was treated to an usually brave and irreverent speech. Graham Moore, who happens to be a Chicago writer, and specializes in adaptation to film projects, stole the show. The movie for which he wrote (which was my favorite for 2014,) The Imitation Game, is the story of a mathematician, genius/code-breaker and cryptanalyst who worked for the Brit’s during WWII. In short, this other worldly stubborn man built a computer to help break the Nazi’s code, before his superiors literally pulled the plug on his expensive project. How important was this work? His ability to break this code early on in the war enabled America, Great Britain, France, Russia and others to shorten The War by at least two years, perhaps four, while saving upwards of FOURTEEN MILLION LIVES. How many people do we hear about now (or ever,) that have managed to save thousands of lives, let alone FOURTEEN MILLION LIVES?

Alan Turing just happened to be gay, and during the 1940’s and 1950’s, it was extremely unpopular, almost hideously criminal. Mr. Turing, rather than ride in parades and receive invitations to every leader of every nation, was forced to endure hormone therapy to “cure his homosexual disease,” after the war. He is believed by many to have ended his own life at forty-one, with little to no attention from the press at the time. Only now do we realize the HUGE IMPACT of this man, and the horrible treatment he was forced to endure after his incredible “world-saving” work, and the wars end. Thank the Good Lord for this incredibly factual recreation of a story whose hero was unknown to everyone. I have always been a WWII history buff, and read of the Brit’s and their incredible code-breaking divisions, and their inherent genius for this type of work, but I never learned of this astoundingly brave man named Alan Turing. Experts claim that he shortened WWII by from two to four years!!! Some fifty million people lost their lives during this horrendously four year period of death and destruction. Consider two MORE YEARS of this war… My Dad was amongst the first wave of GI’s at Utah beach. Would he have survived if the war dragged on for an additional three or four years? How many of our Dads, needless to say any of us, would be alive today without Alan Turing’s relentless dedication to break the Nazi code? I only ask that you read about him, learn about him, and remember his tremendous “GIFT” to the world. Turing’s birthday is June 23rd. Mark it, remember it! Graham Moore sure made certain of it. Mr. Moore wanted to end his life at sixteen, because he didn’t think he belonged…In Moore’s speech, he implored kids who felt “weird, strange or didn’t belong,” to stay strong, don’t change, be themselves.” He also asked kids to pass it forward one day, to others who “didn’t belong.” Thank you, Graham Moore.

P.S. Thanks to the Weinstein Company for developing, and producing such an important movie.

— Paul B.

The Imitation Game – Official Trailer – The Weinstein Company.

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ASK PAUL B! usually appears on Thursday evenings, but occasionally appears on other days or times so the article might be introduced to new readers.

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