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.
If it's near dinner-time, the foreman takes out his watch when the jury has retired, and says: "Dear me, gentlemen, ten minutes to five, I declare! I dine at five, gentlemen." "So do I," says everybody else, except two men who ought to have dined at three and seem more than half disposed to stand out in consequence. The foreman smiles, and puts up his watch:--"Well, gentlemen, what do we say, plaintiff or defendant, gentlemen?
Intellectual despair results in neither weakness nor dreams, but in violence. It is only a matter of knowing how to give vent to one's rage; whether one only wants to wander like madmen around prisons, or whether one wants to overturn them.
We're in a war. People who blast some pot on a casual basis are guilty of treason.
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.
There are only two places in the world where time takes precedence over the job to be done. School and prison.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.
Here the great art lies, to discern in what the law is to be to restraint and punishment, and in what things persuasion only is to work.
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.
Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.
Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.
You utter a vow, or forge a signature, and you may find yourself bound for life to a monastery, a woman, or prison.
When the Nazis came for the communists, I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.
Forgiveness, that noblest of all self-denial, is a virtue which he alone who can practise in himself can willingly believe in another.