To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
A country is in a bad state, which is governed only by laws; because a thousand things occur for which laws cannot provide, and where authority ought to interpose.
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
No man survives when freedom fails. The best men rot in filthy jails, and those who cry 'appease, appease' are hanged by those they tried to please.
Whatever you think of de Sade, he was a complex figure and we should not look for easy answers with him. He was, strangely perhaps, against the death penalty, and he was never put in prison for murders or anything like that.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices - just recognize them.
If we look at Houston, which is a very environmentally toxic place, we find that it has one of the highest levels of young men going to prison and also among the highest levels of illiteracy in the country.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
Most people fancy themselves innocent of those crimes of which they cannot be convicted.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
Society has used the juvenile courts to create a caste system where there are throw-away people.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
Written laws are like spiders' webs, and will, like them, only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful will easily break through them.
You utter a vow, or forge a signature, and you may find yourself bound for life to a monastery, a woman, or prison.