Law is merely the expression of the will of the strongest for the time being, and therefore laws have no fixity, but shift from generation to generation.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
To be in prison so long, it's difficult to remember exactly what you did to get there.
Concepts of justice must have hands and feet to carry out justice in every case in the shortest possible time and the lowest possible cost. That is the challenge to every lawyer and judge in America.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
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.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
Virtue pardons the wicked, as the sandal-tree perfumes the axe which strikes it.
The mellow sweetness of pumpkin pie off a prison spoon is something you will never forget.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
It is true you cannot eat freedom and you cannot power machinery with democracy. But then neither can political prisoners turn on the light in the cells of a dictatorship.
A man will be imprisoned in a room with a door that's unlocked and opens inwards, as long as it does not occur to him to pull rather than push.
The worst of prison life, he thought, was not being able to close his door.
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.
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.
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.
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.