Paragraph 175 

Everyone who hasn't been spending inordinate amounts of time dwelling beneath rocks knows what Hitler's Third Reich did to millions of innocent Jews during World War II. Not quite as universally well known is the fact that the Nazis killed large numbers of others, too -- Poles, Roma Gypsies, Jehovah's Witnesses, priests, pastors and the disabled. German dissidents were executed, as were homosexuals. Between 1933 and 1945 the Nazi regime arrested 100,000 men for real or suspected homosexuality. Being gay wasn't only frowned upon in Hitler's Germany -- it was outright illegal. The documentary Paragraph 175 (referring to the section of the German penal code outlawing homosexuality) reveals the fate of these men, only about 4,000 of whom survived the Fuhrer's death machine. Five appear in this film to relate their harrowing stories for the first time to a world audience. Paragraph 175 screens free tonight at 7 p.m. at the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; 314-746-4599 or www.mohistory.org).
Wed., June 24, 7 p.m., 2015

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