On average, drug prisoners spend more time in federal prison than rapists, who often get out on early release because of the overcrowding in prison caused by the Drug War.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
One should respect public opinion insofar as is necessary to avoid starvation and keep out of prison, but anything that goes beyond this is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny.
Kill a man, and you are an assassin. Kill millions of men, and you are a conqueror. Kill everyone, and you are a God.
Since 1957, black people have experienced double-digit unemployment - in good times and bad times. Look at the population of African Americans in prison. They represent more than half the population of prisoners in the country, 55 percent of those on death row.
The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
In jail a man has no personality. He is a minor disposal problem and a few entries on reports. Nobody cares who loves or hates him, what he looks like, what he did with his life. Nobody reacts to him unless he gives trouble. Nobody abuses him. All that is asked of him is that he go quietly to the right cell and remain quiet when he gets there. There is nothing to fight against, nothing to be mad at. The jailers are quiet men without animosity or sadism.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.