Thursday, October 15, 2009

It's important to forgive, but isn't it important to show remorse too?

We are often lectured by liberals on how important it is to forgive and how forgiveness has paved the way for reconciliation in South Africa and peace in Northern Ireland, but why do they never talk about showing remorse?

A case in point is the "Forgiveness Project", dedicated to "helping build a future free of conflict and violence by healing the wounds of the past". It has just hosted a reception for the IRA bomber Patrick Magee at the Houses of Parliament. This is a man who was quoted as saying "I stand by what I did".

I'm all in favour of conflict resolution, but why should we forgive an unrepentant mass-murderer? The victim must forgive, but it seems that all the perpetrator has to do is stop killing.

Forgiveness has become little more than a get out of jail free card.