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.”
Prisons don't rehabilitate, they don't punish, they don't protect, so what the hell do they do?
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
I can tell you this on a stack of Bibles: prisons are archaic, brutal, unregenerative, overcrowded hell holes where the inmates are treated like animals with absolutely not one humane thought given to what they are going to do once they are released. You're an animal in a cage and you're treated like one.
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.
Civilization is maintained by a very few people in a small number of places and we need only some bombs and a few prisons to blot it out altogether.
America is the land of the second chance – and when the gates of the prison open, the path ahead should lead to a better life.
Justice is that virtue of the soul which is distributive according to desert.
To try to raise a son from inside the prison walls is a very difficult thing. But I want to say to the world my son at 16 was the one who tried the most to get me out of prison.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
Concepts of justice must have hands and feet to carry out justice in every case in the shortest possible time and the lowest possible cost. That is the challenge to every lawyer and judge in America.
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.
I never saw a man who looked With such a wistful eye Upon that little tent of blue Which prisoners call the sky.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
If two people fight on the street, whose fault is it? Who is the criminal? It is the government’s responsibility because the government has not educated the people to not make mistakes. The people have inadequate, incompetent education, so they make mistakes! It is such a fraud.
Intellectual despair results in neither weakness nor dreams, but in violence. It is only a matter of knowing how to give vent to one's rage; whether one only wants to wander like madmen around prisons, or whether one wants to overturn them.