So I'm pretty sure the human evolutionary process has stalled (or maybe regressed): The Indian government just shelled out $1.28 million to buy over 1,000 letters and documents that might reveal Gandhi was ... wait for it ... gay. That's right, we apparently are living in a time when a major governing body deemed the million-dollar cover-up of a long-dead icon's possible homosexuality a necessary and justifiable expense.
Of course, the Indian government won't come out (ha!) and say that's why they bought the archive of correspondence between Gandhi and architect Hermann Kallenbach. According to a senior official at the Ministry of Culture in New Delhi, "These (papers) are of huge importance to India to carry out research on the Gandhian view on various things, that is why we decided to purchase them."
Okay, fair enough. Until ...
Until you take a look at a passage from Pulitzer-Prize-winning author Joseph Lelyveld's book Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India, in which Lelyveld describes those "important" papers. Gandhi's words to Kallenbach stand alone as a fairly convincing argument, even without additional author input (explaining that Gandhi left his wife for Kallenbach, for example):
Your portrait (the only one) stands on my mantelpiece in my bedroom. The mantelpiece is opposite to the bed ... how completely you have taken possession of my body. This is slavery with a vengeance.
He also asked Kallenbach to promise not to "look lustfully upon any woman."
Okay, so Gandhi had a boyfriend. Probably. This is a problem because ... why, exactly? Because Gandhi's message of non-violence is for heterosexuals only? Am I missing something?
Hey, I have a much more cost-effective idea for the Indian government. Why not just go on a hunger strike?
Why do you think anybody would have a problem with Gandhi being gay?
Image via Strt's Photos/Flickr