Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
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.
Kill a man, and you are an assassin. Kill millions of men, and you are a conqueror. Kill everyone, and you are a God.
Prisons don't rehabilitate, they don't punish, they don't protect, so what the hell do they do?
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
I have been studying how I may compare this prison where I live unto the world; Shut up in the prison of their own consciences.
No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.
Well, I don't think prisons are the answer to everything, obviously.
We who live in prison, and in whose lives there is no event but sorrow, have to measure time by throbs of pain, and the record of bitter moments.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
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.
There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.
Educate your children to self-control, to the habit of holding passion and prejudice and evil tendencies to an upright and reasoning will, and you have done much to abolish misery from their future lives and crimes to society.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.
We have initiated programs for re-entry offenders, since some 500,000 to 600,000 offenders will come out of prison each year for the next three or four years. We want to have positive alternatives when they come back to the community.
The thoughts of a prisoner - they're not free either. They keep returning to the same things.
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.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
Faults of the head are punished in this world, those of the heart in another; but as most of our vices are compound, so also is their punishment.