In this series we look at various heroes and advocates of the LGBTQIA family.
In this article we focus on Ally, Jeremy Bentham.
By today’s standards Jeremy Bentham would be seen as an ally for most certainly the gay and bisexual community.
In a time when hangings or time in stocks for the smallest of ‘crimes’ there was man, a true humanitarian who stood out.
Jeremy Bentham (1747(48)- 1832) was a social reformer. It is thought that Bentham was the first person to first argue for any form of rights for ‘sodomites’, although his main piece that he wrote wasn’t published until the nineteen seventies it certainly proves his mind set. He believed that buggery was a victimless crime and it didn’t deserve the sentence it stood for.
He saw the popular negative attitudes against homosexual acts as irrational and full of prejudice fuelled by religion. Most probably the reason why it went unpublished at the time was fear of reprisal. He was one of the main voices in the fight to debunk the practice of hangings for buggery and time in the pillory. He also campaigned for women’s rights and the abolition of slavery in the British Empire.