The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
Fast closed with double grills And triple gates–the cell To wicked souls is hell; But to a mind that's innocent 'Tis only iron, wood and stone.
He had drawn many a thousand of these rations in prisons and camps, and though he'd never had an opportunity to weight them on scales, and although, being a man of timid nature, he knew no way of standing up for his rights, he, like every other prisoner, had discovered long ago that honest weight was never to be found in the bread-cutting. There was short weight in every ration. The only point was how short. So every day you took a look to soothe your soul - today, maybe, they haven't snitched any.
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.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
Written laws are like spiders' webs, and will, like them, only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful will easily break through them.
The only effect of public punishment is to show the rabble how bravely it can be borne; and that every one who hath lost a toe-nail hath suffered worse.
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.
To seek the redress of grievances by going to law, is like sheep running for shelter to a bramble bush.
Society has used the juvenile courts to create a caste system where there are throw-away people.