The government is the potent omnipresent teacher. For good or ill it teaches the whole people by its example. Crime is contagious. If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy. To declare that the end justifies the means -- to declare that the government may commit crimes -- would bring terrible retribution.
Words and Listening
In this space, you can read and reflect on the thoughts and words of a variety of people from many different times and places. But they have all looked at the world as we have and asked what imprisonment and justice mean. Imagine them speaking within the room at the trial of someone unjustly accused and listen to their different voices.
There are some questions for discussion following the quotations. You are encouraged to think about these voices and note down any ideas, comments, dreams, criticisms, reactions or images which come to mind in your notebook, journal or on your blog.
- How do you feel about these different thoughts?
- What do you think these voices are telling us?
- If you visited one of these people unjustly imprisoned in a cell, what would you say to them?
- Write some thoughts of your own in your diary