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.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
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.
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%.
To be in prison so long, it's difficult to remember exactly what you did to get there.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.
On a planet that increasingly resembles one huge Maximum Security prison, the only intelligent choice is to plan a jail break.
There is no greater punishment of wickedness that that it is dissatisfied with itself and its deeds.
Civilization is maintained by a very few people in a small number of places and we need only some bombs and a few prisons to blot it out altogether.
It is safer that a bad man should not be accused, than that he should be acquitted.
Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
Corporal punishment falls far more heavily than most weighty pecuniary penalty.
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.
It was only when I lay there on the rotting prison straw that I sensed within myself the first stirrings of good. Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not between states nor between social classes nor between political parties, but right through every human heart, through all human hearts. And that is why I turn back to the years of my imprisonment and say, sometimes to the astonishment of those about me, bless you, prison, for having been a part of my life.