If we look at Houston, which is a very environmentally toxic place, we find that it has one of the highest levels of young men going to prison and also among the highest levels of illiteracy in the country.
Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.
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.
He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.
If you treat prisoners well, they will be less angry, less inclined to violence inside prison, less likely to provoke violent actions by guards, less likely to have reason to file brutality lawsuits that cost taxpayers a bundle and waste administrators' time. And most important, well-treated prisoners will be less likely to leave prison angrier, more vicious and more inclined to criminal behavior than when they went in.
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.
No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
There is no peace because the making of peace is at least as costly as the making of war - at least as exigent, at least as disruptive, at least as liable to bring disgrace and prison and death in its wake.
It is safer that a bad man should not be accused, than that he should be acquitted.
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 law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
I just remember that disturbing feeling of walking into that prison, the complete loss of privacy, the complete loss of stimulation, dignity.
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.
The thoughts of a prisoner - they're not free either. They keep returning to the same things.
A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.