When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
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 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.
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.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
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.
The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.
Written laws are like spiders' webs, and will, like them, only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful will easily break through them.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
The thoughts of a prisoner - they're not free either. They keep returning to the same things.
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.
Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.
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.