Ellis Boyd 'Red' Redding Addresses the Parole
Board for the Final Time
Please, sit down. Ellis Boyd Redding, your files say you've
served 40 years of a life sentence. You feel you've been
Redding: Rehabilitated? Well, now, let me see. You know, I don't have any idea what that means.
Interviewer: Uh, well, it means
you're ready to rejoin society --
Redding: -- I know what
you think it means, sonny. To me, it's just a made up word, a politician's
word, so that young fellas like yourself can wear a suit and a tie and
have a job. What do you really wanna know? Am I sorry for what I did?
Interviewer: Well, are you?
Redding: There's not a
day goes by I don't feel regret. Not because I'm in here, or
because you think I should. I look back on the way I was
then, a young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime.
I wanna talk to him. I wanna try to talk some sense to him
-- tell him the way things are. But I can't. That kid's long
gone and this old man is all that's left. I gotta live with
It's just a bullshit word.
So you go on and stamp your form,
sonny, and stop wasting my time.
Because to tell you the truth, I don't
give a shit.