I can tell you this on a stack of Bibles: prisons are archaic, brutal, unregenerative, overcrowded hell holes where the inmates are treated like animals with absolutely not one humane thought given to what they are going to do once they are released. You're an animal in a cage and you're treated like one.
The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.
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.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
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.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
A country is in a bad state, which is governed only by laws; because a thousand things occur for which laws cannot provide, and where authority ought to interpose.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
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.
No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.