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.
In jail a man has no personality. He is a minor disposal problem and a few entries on reports. Nobody cares who loves or hates him, what he looks like, what he did with his life. Nobody reacts to him unless he gives trouble. Nobody abuses him. All that is asked of him is that he go quietly to the right cell and remain quiet when he gets there. There is nothing to fight against, nothing to be mad at. The jailers are quiet men without animosity or sadism.
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.
Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our duty is to furnish it well.
The best situation of all, and one frequently utilized, is for jails and prisons to allow volunteer ministers of all faiths to enter prisons and offer their services to the inmates who want them. That way, the religious needs of inmates are met but without government funds being spent.
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.
Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
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.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
Fast closed with double grills And triple gates–the cell To wicked souls is hell; But to a mind that's innocent 'Tis only iron, wood and stone.
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.”
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
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.
Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.
Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.