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Prison Quotes

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.”

Father James Keller
Total votes: 14

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 don't like jail, they got the wrong kind of bars in there.

Charles Bukowski
Total votes: 19

Crime succeeds by sudden despatch; honest counsels gain vigor by delay.

Tacitus (Caius Cornelius Tacitus)
Total votes: 13

If you treat prisoners well, they will be less angry, less inclined to violence inside prison, less likely to provoke violent actions by guards, less likely to have reason to file brutality lawsuits that cost taxpayers a bundle and waste administrators' time. And most important, well-treated prisoners will be less likely to leave prison angrier, more vicious and more inclined to criminal behavior than when they went in.

Frank Wood, Commissioner of Corrections, Minnesota
Total votes: 17

If you strike at, imprison, or kill us, out of our prisons or graves we will still evoke a spirit that will thwart you, and perhaps, raise a force that will destroy you! We defy you! Do your worst!

James Connolly
Total votes: 10

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.

Daniel Webster
Total votes: 15

As we grow in wisdom, we pardon more freely.

Madame de Stael
Total votes: 13

The idea that the sole aim of punishment is to prevent crime is obviously grounded upon the theory that crime can be prevented, which is almost as dubious as the notion that poverty can be prevented.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 16

Fast closed with double grills And triple gates–the cell To wicked souls is hell; But to a mind that's innocent 'Tis only iron, wood and stone.

Paul Pelisson Fontanier
Total votes: 16

The guilt of enforced crimes lies on those who impose them.

Seneca
Total votes: 15

A man will be imprisoned in a room with a door that's unlocked and opens inwards, as long as it does not occur to him to pull rather than push.

Ludwig Wittgenstein
Total votes: 14

Distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.

Friedrich Nietzsche
Total votes: 21

It is safer that a bad man should not be accused, than that he should be acquitted.

Titus Livy
Total votes: 15

I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Total votes: 13

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.

Michael Badnarik
Total votes: 24

Shyness is the prison of the heart.

Spanish Proverb
Total votes: 15

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.

Janet Reno
You voted 2. Total votes: 18

A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 8

The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.

Hiram Mann
Total votes: 24

It was only when I lay there on the rotting prison straw that I sensed within myself the first stirrings of good. Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not between states nor between social classes nor between political parties, but right through every human heart, through all human hearts. And that is why I turn back to the years of my imprisonment and say, sometimes to the astonishment of those about me, bless you, prison, for having been a part of my life.

Aleksander Solzhenitsyn
Total votes: 13

Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.

Thomas Denman
Total votes: 12


Most people fancy themselves innocent of those crimes of which they cannot be convicted.

Seneca
Total votes: 10

The torment of human frustration, whatever its immediate cause, is the knowledge that the self is in prison, its vital force and 'mangled mind' leaking away in lonely, wasteful self-conflict.

Elizabeth Drew
Total votes: 20

The solution to our drug problem is not in incarceration.
 

Barry McCaffrey
Total votes: 6