I believe what is utmost important is the height of their crimes and whether or not they're personal. I would argue someone who robs a bank armed with guns is far more deserving of a second chance than a homophobe that beats a gay person down to an inch of their life. Because one crime is out of selfish want or perhaps a desperate need to for profit, meanwhile the other is solely out of hatred and it has no merit behind it. Violent crimes don't always have violence as an intention to lead up to it. Some people commit crimes because it's how they make a living. A drug dealer that commits crime out of profit deserves far more compassion than a criminal that commits crime out of entertainment. In fact, you know what? I'd argue being a drug dealer that commits crimes for profit is no worse than an innocent person that kills animals out of entertainment or luxury. Yeah, I just went there.
I mean look I can understand assault and robbery. There were times in my life when I wanted to beat certain people up for the things they've done to me, so I don't think we should be too hard on criminals like that. And I can understand stealing too. Well not a violent robbery though.
You do nothing violent at all, no rape, and no second chance back into society? That potentially could cost us over a Million dollar a prisoner to keep them locked up in jail their entire lives for petty crimes. Stupid idea and it would destroy the economy as well. Also I've never been in trouble in over 30 years so it doesn't even apply to me.
Not everyone deserves a second chance. A second chance is not given, it is earned, and to get it, one must demonstrate that their past offenses are behind them and that they have changed. For example, Michael Vick, the footballer player who ran a dogfighting team, has donated millions to charity, speaks to schools and at other venues, and lobbies for harsher dogfighting punishments, and so should be offered another chance. Meanwhile, Chris Brown has made no believable bid for redemption, and so has not earned any form of forgiveness, much less a second chance.