The worst of prison life, he thought, was not being able to close his door.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.
Governments have tried to stop crime through punishment throughout the ages, but crime continued in the past punishment remains. Crime can only be stopped through a preventive approach in the schools. You teach the students Transcendental Meditation, and right away they’ll begin using their full brain physiology sensible and they will not get sidetracked into wrong things.
Probably the only place where a man can feel really secure is in a maximum security prison, except for the imminent threat of release.
It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
Only free men can negotiate. Prisoners cannot enter into contracts.
I asked a man in prison once how he happened to be there and he said he had stolen a pair of shoes. I told him if he had stolen a railroad he would be a United States Senator.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.
The contagion of crime is like that of the plague. Criminals collected together corrupt each other; they are worse than ever when at the termination of their punishment they re-enter society.
Three hundred years ago a prisoner condemned to the Tower of London carved on the wall of his cell this sentiment to keep up his spirits during his long imprisonment: “It is not adversity that kills, but the impatience with which we bear adversity.”
We have initiated programs for re-entry offenders, since some 500,000 to 600,000 offenders will come out of prison each year for the next three or four years. We want to have positive alternatives when they come back to the community.
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.
Forgiveness, that noblest of all self-denial, is a virtue which he alone who can practise in himself can willingly believe in another.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
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.
If it's near dinner-time, the foreman takes out his watch when the jury has retired, and says: "Dear me, gentlemen, ten minutes to five, I declare! I dine at five, gentlemen." "So do I," says everybody else, except two men who ought to have dined at three and seem more than half disposed to stand out in consequence. The foreman smiles, and puts up his watch:--"Well, gentlemen, what do we say, plaintiff or defendant, gentlemen?
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.