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Prison Quotes

What restrains us from killing is partly fear of punishment, partly moral scruple, and partly what may be described as a sense of humor.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 24

No crime has been without a precedent.

Seneca
Total votes: 15

It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.

Sir Philip Sidney
Total votes: 7

If you want total security, go to prison. There you’re fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking…is freedom.

Dwight David Eisenhower
Total votes: 17

Nothing can be more abhorrent to democracy than to imprison a person or keep him in prison because he is unpopular. This is really the test of civilization.

Winston Churchill
Total votes: 10

I asked a man in prison once how he happened to be there and he said he had stolen a pair of shoes. I told him if he had stolen a railroad he would be a United States Senator.

Mary Harris Jones
Total votes: 22

To be in prison so long, it's difficult to remember exactly what you did to get there.

Jack Henry Abbott
Total votes: 15

I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.

Fredrich August von Hayek
Total votes: 14

Overlook our deeds, since you know that crime was absent from our inclination.

Ovid (Publius Ovidius Naso)
Total votes: 21

Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our duty is to furnish it well.

Peter Ustinov
Total votes: 10

When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.

Mike Tyson
Total votes: 22

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.

Lech Walesa
Total votes: 17

Virtue pardons the wicked, as the sandal-tree perfumes the axe which strikes it.

Moslih Eddin
Total votes: 13

The power of punishment is to silence, not to confute.

Samuel Johnson
Total votes: 11

Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Total votes: 9

It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.

Graham Greene
Total votes: 17

Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds.

Franklin D. Roosevelt
Total votes: 17

It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.

Mario Vargas Llosa
Total votes: 11

I have been studying how I may compare This prison where I live unto the world; And, for because the world is populous, And here is not a creature but myself, I cannot do it. Yet I'll hammer it out.

William Shakespeare
Total votes: 22

Money will determine whether the accused goes to prison or walks out of the courtroom a free man.

Johnnie Cochran
Total votes: 17

Wicked deeds are generally done, even with impunity, for the mere desire of occupation.

Marcellinus Ammianus
Total votes: 14

Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.

A. R. Ammons
Total votes: 10

Nelson Mandela and Malcolm X came out of prison stronger.

Philip Emeagwali
Total votes: 12


Whatever is worthy to be loved for anything is worthy of preservation. A wise and dispassionate legislator, if any such should ever arise among men, will not condemn to death him who has done or is likely to do more service than injury to society. Blocks and gibbets are the nearest objects with legislators, and their business is never with hopes or with virtues.

Walter Savage Landor
Total votes: 14

When the Nazis came for the communists, I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.

Reverend Martin Niemoeller
Total votes: 19