The number of laws is constantly growing in all countries and, owing to this, what is called crime is very often not a crime at all, for it contains no element of violence or harm.
Those magistrates who can prevent crime, and do not, in effect encourage it.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
History is full of people who went to prison or were burned at the stake for proclaiming their ideas. Society has always defended itself.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
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.
The world itself is but a large prison, out of which some are daily led to execution.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
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.
Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.
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.
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.
What restrains us from killing is partly fear of punishment, partly moral scruple, and partly what may be described as a sense of humor.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
I have been studying how I may compare this prison where I live unto the world; Shut up in the prison of their own consciences.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
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?