The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
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.
He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.
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.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
The thoughts of a prisoner - they're not free either. They keep returning to the same things.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.
A country is in a bad state, which is governed only by laws; because a thousand things occur for which laws cannot provide, and where authority ought to interpose.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
Nor cell, nor chain, nor dungeon speaks to the murderer like the voice of solitude.
The difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion is the thickness of a prison walls.
Those magistrates who can prevent crime, and do not, in effect encourage it.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
Prison continues, on those who are entrusted to it, a work begun elsewhere, which the whole of society pursues on each individual through innumerable mechanisms of discipline.
In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.