To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
Federal prison, if you get any of it, you're going to have to do 85% of it. And the reason why I called it that is because I had a friend who got sent to the federal joint and his whole... it wasn't about him being in jail. He cried about the 85%.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.
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.
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.
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.
I have been studying how I may compare This prison where I live unto the world; And, for because the world is populous, And here is not a creature but myself, I cannot do it. Yet I'll hammer it out.
Society has used the juvenile courts to create a caste system where there are throw-away people.
They're not supposed to show prison films in prison. Especially ones that are about escaping.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
Three hundred years ago a prisoner condemned to the Tower of London carved on the wall of his cell this sentiment to keep up his spirits during his long imprisonment: “It is not adversity that kills, but the impatience with which we bear adversity.”
We who live in prison, and in whose lives there is no event but sorrow, have to measure time by throbs of pain, and the record of bitter moments.
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.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
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.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
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.