The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
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.
Forgiveness, that noblest of all self-denial, is a virtue which he alone who can practise in himself can willingly believe in another.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.
If we look at Houston, which is a very environmentally toxic place, we find that it has one of the highest levels of young men going to prison and also among the highest levels of illiteracy in the country.
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.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
I am an expert of electricity. My father occupied the chair of applied electricity at the state prison.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.