To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
The mellow sweetness of pumpkin pie off a prison spoon is something you will never forget.
We have our own system, ... and journalists in our system are not put in prison for embarrassing the government by revealing things the government might not wish to have revealed. The important thing is that our system, under which journalists can write without fear or favor, should continue.
The only effect of public punishment is to show the rabble how bravely it can be borne; and that every one who hath lost a toe-nail hath suffered worse.
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.
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 English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
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.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
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.
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.
He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.