Coerced apology

I saw this on a legal blog; a high school student was convicted of forced sexual touching of another student and as part of sentencing was ordered to write a “a sincere written letter of apology … mean[ing] an admission that he did what he was accused of what he’s doing [sic] and [is] sorry he put her in that position.”

That part of the sentence was appealed but upheld but should an apology be required as part of a criminal sentence? It seems to me that a mandated apology is worthless. When I was a kid I’d be a jerk to one of my sibs, my mother would tell me to apologize and I’d respond with a grudging “I’m sorrrry.”

I’m sure some people are convicted and really are sorry and sincerely apologize to their victims, others are only sorry that they got caught but know the system and know how to come up with an apology that will please the court. Some can’t apologize because they are innocent but are pleading guilty to avoid a much longer sentence.
So why bother?

If I were a crime victim I would regard a court mandated apology as worthless.

Yeah, America is often just obsessed with apologies. I agree, an apology given only after a shakedown is suspect.

If a person were truly sorry, they would not have to be forced or even asked to apologize. He would reach out to the victim on his own & ask for forgiveness. Coercion means nothing.

I think it’s still something appropriate to teach children - to humble yourself and admit wrongdoing. So I do “make” my children apologize.

I don’t think it’s appropriate to coerce from adults, though you’d hope they could come to that conclusion on their own.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.