To require expressions of remorse from prisoners is to demand to be lied to

Remorse, writes Dalrymple,

is a private emotion, and is sullied and rendered doubtful by the possibility of personal advantage if it be expressed.


there are some crimes so heinous that remorse for them is beside the point, at least where earthly judgment is concerned.


while people may pride themselves on their compassion when they claim that no person is beyond the reach of remorse, redemption, and rehabilitation, in fact what they show is a lack of imagination. There are some crimes that are properly beyond secular forgiveness; there were many in the 20th century; and we should not confuse the realm of the secular and divine.

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