He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
Forgiveness, that noblest of all self-denial, is a virtue which he alone who can practise in himself can willingly believe in another.
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our duty is to furnish it well.
On average, drug prisoners spend more time in federal prison than rapists, who often get out on early release because of the overcrowding in prison caused by the Drug War.
I can tell you this on a stack of Bibles: prisons are archaic, brutal, unregenerative, overcrowded hell holes where the inmates are treated like animals with absolutely not one humane thought given to what they are going to do once they are released. You're an animal in a cage and you're treated like one.
Federal prison, if you get any of it, you're going to have to do 85% of it. And the reason why I called it that is because I had a friend who got sent to the federal joint and his whole... it wasn't about him being in jail. He cried about the 85%.
Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.
If you strike at, imprison, or kill us, out of our prisons or graves we will still evoke a spirit that will thwart you, and perhaps, raise a force that will destroy you! We defy you! Do your worst!
We have our own system, ... and journalists in our system are not put in prison for embarrassing the government by revealing things the government might not wish to have revealed. The important thing is that our system, under which journalists can write without fear or favor, should continue.
There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.