The only difference between me and my fellow actors is that I've spent more time in jail.
Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
The torment of human frustration, whatever its immediate cause, is the knowledge that the self is in prison, its vital force and 'mangled mind' leaking away in lonely, wasteful self-conflict.
Show me the prison, Show me the jail, Show me the prisoner whose life has gone stale. And I'll show you a young man with so many reasons why And there, but for fortune, go you or I.
Whatever you think of de Sade, he was a complex figure and we should not look for easy answers with him. He was, strangely perhaps, against the death penalty, and he was never put in prison for murders or anything like that.
The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.
Probably the only place where a man can feel really secure is in a maximum security prison, except for the imminent threat of release.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
Whatever is worthy to be loved for anything is worthy of preservation. A wise and dispassionate legislator, if any such should ever arise among men, will not condemn to death him who has done or is likely to do more service than injury to society. Blocks and gibbets are the nearest objects with legislators, and their business is never with hopes or with virtues.
Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass, Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron, Can be retentive to the strength of spirit; But life, being weary of these worldly bars, Never lacks power to dismiss itself.
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.
The mellow sweetness of pumpkin pie off a prison spoon is something you will never forget.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.