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.
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.
A man will be imprisoned in a room with a door that's unlocked and opens inwards, as long as it does not occur to him to pull rather than push.
It is true you cannot eat freedom and you cannot power machinery with democracy. But then neither can political prisoners turn on the light in the cells of a dictatorship.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
One of the problems that the marijuana reform movement consistently faces is that everyone wants to talk about what marijuana does, but no one ever wants to look at what marijuana prohibition does. Marijuana never kicks down your door in the middle of the night. Marijuana never locks up sick and dying people, does not suppress medical research, does not peek in bedroom windows.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
You utter a vow, or forge a signature, and you may find yourself bound for life to a monastery, a woman, or prison.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
Oh who is that young sinner with the handcuffs on his wrist? And what has he been after that they groan and shake their fists? And wherefore is he wearing such a conscience-stricken air? Oh they're taking him to prison for the colour of his hair.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
Most people fancy themselves innocent of those crimes of which they cannot be convicted.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.