The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
It is safer that a bad man should not be accused, than that he should be acquitted.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
One should respect public opinion insofar as is necessary to avoid starvation and keep out of prison, but anything that goes beyond this is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny.
Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.
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.
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.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
It is the deed that teaches, not the name we give it. Murder and capital punishment are not opposites that cancel one another, but similars that breed their own kind.
One man meets an infamous punishment for that crime which confers a diadem upon another.
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.
Experts and the educated elite have replaced what worked with what sounded good. Society was far more civilized before they took over our schools, prisons, welfare programs, police departments and courts. It's high time we ran these people out of our lives and went back to common sense.
To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
I was put into jail as I was going to the shoemaker's to get a shoe which was mended. When I was let out the next morning, I proceeded to finish my errand, and, having put on my mended shoe, joined a huckleberry party, who were impatient to put themselves under my conduct; and in half an hour -- for the horse was soon tackled -- was in the midst of a huckleberry field, on one of our highest hills, two miles off, and then the State was nowhere to be seen.