No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
I never told a victim story about my imprisonment. Instead, I told a transformation story - about how prison changed my outlook, about how I saw that communication, truth, and trust are at the heart of power.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
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.
Nothing can be more abhorrent to democracy than to imprison a person or keep him in prison because he is unpopular. This is really the test of civilization.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
What restrains us from killing is partly fear of punishment, partly moral scruple, and partly what may be described as a sense of humor.
There is no greater punishment of wickedness that that it is dissatisfied with itself and its deeds.
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.
A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.
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 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.