One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
To be in prison so long, it's difficult to remember exactly what you did to get there.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
Prison makes you a better judge of character. You pick up on people much faster.
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.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
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.
Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.
Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices - just recognize them.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
Society has used the juvenile courts to create a caste system where there are throw-away people.
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.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
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.
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.
If it's near dinner-time, the foreman takes out his watch when the jury has retired, and says: "Dear me, gentlemen, ten minutes to five, I declare! I dine at five, gentlemen." "So do I," says everybody else, except two men who ought to have dined at three and seem more than half disposed to stand out in consequence. The foreman smiles, and puts up his watch:--"Well, gentlemen, what do we say, plaintiff or defendant, gentlemen?
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.