Fr Jim Cogley
Society in general only makes judgments in relation to persons. The question of ‘what have you done’ then easily translates into how you should be treated or punished. The question of ‘what happened to you, that you should have behaved in this manner’ is rarely asked, although it is slowly becoming more part of out judicial system, where a person’s background is given some consideration. This is where judgment becomes tempered by mercy. Because something is understandable does not make it excusable, and every person must take responsibility for his or her actions. The vast majority of offenders avoid taking personal responsibility, and instead look for someone to blame, whether it be parents, upbringing or society. Always its easier to fix the blame than the problem, its easier to look outwards than to face the pain of what is hurting within.