The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
Virtue pardons the wicked, as the sandal-tree perfumes the axe which strikes it.
Prison continues, on those who are entrusted to it, a work begun elsewhere, which the whole of society pursues on each individual through innumerable mechanisms of discipline.
Any punishment that does not correct, that can merely rouse rebellion in whoever has to endure it, is a piece of gratuitous infamy which makes those who impose it more guilty in the eyes of humanity, good sense and reason, nay a hundred times more guilty than the victim on whom the punishment is inflicted.
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.
Since 1957, black people have experienced double-digit unemployment - in good times and bad times. Look at the population of African Americans in prison. They represent more than half the population of prisoners in the country, 55 percent of those on death row.
The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
I asked a man in prison once how he happened to be there and he said he had stolen a pair of shoes. I told him if he had stolen a railroad he would be a United States Senator.
Here the great art lies, to discern in what the law is to be to restraint and punishment, and in what things persuasion only is to work.
I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.
Justice is that virtue of the soul which is distributive according to desert.
It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
One should respect public opinion insofar as is necessary to avoid starvation and keep out of prison, but anything that goes beyond this is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny.
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.