In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
Law is merely the expression of the will of the strongest for the time being, and therefore laws have no fixity, but shift from generation to generation.
Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter.
Wicked deeds are generally done, even with impunity, for the mere desire of occupation.
It is certain that the study of human psychology, if it were undertaken exclusively in prisons, would also lead to misrepresentation and absurd generalizations.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
The difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion is the thickness of a prison walls.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
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.
We're in a war. People who blast some pot on a casual basis are guilty of treason.
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.
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.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
Whatever is worthy to be loved for anything is worthy of preservation. A wise and dispassionate legislator, if any such should ever arise among men, will not condemn to death him who has done or is likely to do more service than injury to society. Blocks and gibbets are the nearest objects with legislators, and their business is never with hopes or with virtues.