To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
Corporal punishment falls far more heavily than most weighty pecuniary penalty.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
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.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
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.
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.
Women now have choices. They can be married, not married, have a job, not have a job, be married with children, unmarried with children. Men have the same choice we've always had: work, or prison.
To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.
If you strike at, imprison, or kill us, out of our prisons or graves we will still evoke a spirit that will thwart you, and perhaps, raise a force that will destroy you! We defy you! Do your worst!
The idea that the sole aim of punishment is to prevent crime is obviously grounded upon the theory that crime can be prevented, which is almost as dubious as the notion that poverty can be prevented.
The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
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.