The number of laws is constantly growing in all countries and, owing to this, what is called crime is very often not a crime at all, for it contains no element of violence or harm.
Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices - just recognize them.
Virtue pardons the wicked, as the sandal-tree perfumes the axe which strikes it.
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.
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.
Justice is that virtue of the soul which is distributive according to desert.
America is the land of the second chance – and when the gates of the prison open, the path ahead should lead to a better life.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
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.
When is conduct a crime, and when is a crime not a crime? When Somebody Up There -- a monarch, a dictator, a Pope, a legislator -- so decrees.
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.
It is the deed that teaches, not the name we give it. Murder and capital punishment are not opposites that cancel one another, but similars that breed their own kind.
Faults of the head are punished in this world, those of the heart in another; but as most of our vices are compound, so also is their punishment.
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.
I have paid no poll-tax for six years. I was put into a jail once on this account, for one night; and, as I stood considering the walls of solid stone, I could not help being struck with the foolishness of that institution which treated me as if I were mere flesh and blood and bones, to be locked up...I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through, before they could get to be as free as I was.
Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.
Educate your children to self-control, to the habit of holding passion and prejudice and evil tendencies to an upright and reasoning will, and you have done much to abolish misery from their future lives and crimes to society.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
The uneven impact of actual enforcement measures tends to mirror and reinforce more general patterns of discrimination (along socioeconomic, racial and ethnic, sexual, and perhaps generational lines) within the society. As a consequence, such enforcement (ineffective as it may be in producing conformity) almost certainly reinforces feelings of alienation already prevalent within major segments of the population.