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
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to press their case before courts since they could still be prosecuted under existing laws.
However, the contemporary Gay Rights Movement, both in the United States and in Europe, has led to a re-opening of the plight of homosexuals in Nazi Germany. The unparalleled treatment of homosexuals under the Nazi regime raises the same questions raised by the Holocaust itself: How could it happen? Can it happen again? And how can it's recurrence be prevented?