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Prison Quotes

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.

Georges Bataille
Total votes: 27

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.

John Milton
Total votes: 16

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.

Warren E. Burger
Total votes: 24

The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.

Clarence S. Darrow
Total votes: 17

America is the land of the second chance – and when the gates of the prison open, the path ahead should lead to a better life.

George W. Bush
Total votes: 20

I am an expert of electricity. My father occupied the chair of applied electricity at the state prison.

W. C. Fields
Total votes: 21

To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.

Albert Einstein
Total votes: 28

Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.

A. R. Ammons
Total votes: 22

The world is a prison in which solitary confinement is preferable.
 

Karl Kraus
Total votes: 30

I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.

Calvin Coolidge
Total votes: 30

I know not whether laws be right, or whether laws be wrong; All that we know who lie in gaol is that the wall is strong; And that each day is like a year, a year whose days are long.

Oscar Wilde
Total votes: 29


Written laws are like spiders' webs, and will, like them, only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful will easily break through them.

Anacharsis
Total votes: 25

The contagion of crime is like that of the plague. Criminals collected together corrupt each other; they are worse than ever when at the termination of their punishment they re-enter society.

Napoleon Bonaparte
Total votes: 26

The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.

David Herbert Lawrence
Total votes: 20

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.

Corazon Aquino
Total votes: 34

Crimes generally punish themselves.

Oliver Goldsmith
Total votes: 26

Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Total votes: 22

The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.

Horace Mann
Total votes: 25

Liberty is rendered even more precious by the recollection of servitude.

Marcus Tullius Cicero
Total votes: 25

The worst of prison life, he thought, was not being able to close his door.

Stendhal (pseudonym Henri Beyle)
Total votes: 25

It was only when I lay there on the rotting prison straw that I sensed within myself the first stirrings of good. Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not between states nor between social classes nor between political parties, but right through every human heart, through all human hearts. And that is why I turn back to the years of my imprisonment and say, sometimes to the astonishment of those about me, bless you, prison, for having been a part of my life.

Aleksander Solzhenitsyn
Total votes: 25

Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.

Antonin Scalia
Total votes: 23

Oh who is that young sinner with the handcuffs on his wrist? And what has he been after that they groan and shake their fists? And wherefore is he wearing such a conscience-stricken air? Oh they're taking him to prison for the colour of his hair.

A. E. Housman
Total votes: 28

Body is a home, a prison and a grave.

James Runcie
Total votes: 17

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.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Total votes: 22