In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
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.
Taught from infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison.
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.
You utter a vow, or forge a signature, and you may find yourself bound for life to a monastery, a woman, or prison.
To seek the redress of grievances by going to law, is like sheep running for shelter to a bramble bush.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
I have paid no poll-tax for six years. I was put into a jail once on this account, for one night; and, as I stood considering the walls of solid stone, I could not help being struck with the foolishness of that institution which treated me as if I were mere flesh and blood and bones, to be locked up...I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through, before they could get to be as free as I was. I did not for a moment feel confined, and the walls seemed a great waste of stone and mortar.
Whatever you think of de Sade, he was a complex figure and we should not look for easy answers with him. He was, strangely perhaps, against the death penalty, and he was never put in prison for murders or anything like that.
Faults of the head are punished in this world, those of the heart in another; but as most of our vices are compound, so also is their punishment.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
The idea that the sole aim of punishment is to prevent crime is obviously grounded upon the theory that crime can be prevented, which is almost as dubious as the notion that poverty can be prevented.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
Prisons don't rehabilitate, they don't punish, they don't protect, so what the hell do they do?
To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
To try to raise a son from inside the prison walls is a very difficult thing. But I want to say to the world my son at 16 was the one who tried the most to get me out of prison.