It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
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.”
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.
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.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
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.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
We shall not yield to violence. We shall not be deprived of union freedoms. We shall never agree with sending people to prison for their convictions.
Any punishment that does not correct, that can merely rouse rebellion in whoever has to endure it, is a piece of gratuitous infamy which makes those who impose it more guilty in the eyes of humanity, good sense and reason, nay a hundred times more guilty than the victim on whom the punishment is inflicted.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
The worst of prison life, he thought, was not being able to close his door.
Care should be taken that the punishment does not exceed the guilt; and also that some men do not suffer for offenses for which others are not even indicted.