The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
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.
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.
No man survives when freedom fails. The best men rot in filthy jails, and those who cry 'appease, appease' are hanged by those they tried to please.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
Most people fancy themselves innocent of those crimes of which they cannot be convicted.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
The only difference between me and my fellow actors is that I've spent more time in jail.
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.
If you treat prisoners well, they will be less angry, less inclined to violence inside prison, less likely to provoke violent actions by guards, less likely to have reason to file brutality lawsuits that cost taxpayers a bundle and waste administrators' time. And most important, well-treated prisoners will be less likely to leave prison angrier, more vicious and more inclined to criminal behavior than when they went in.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our duty is to furnish it well.
I was in prison, and you came unto me. Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
~(Jesus Christ) Matthew 25:36, 40
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.