To be in prison so long, it's difficult to remember exactly what you did to get there.
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 object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
Society has used the juvenile courts to create a caste system where there are throw-away people.
The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business.
When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.
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.
Federal prison, if you get any of it, you're going to have to do 85% of it. And the reason why I called it that is because I had a friend who got sent to the federal joint and his whole... it wasn't about him being in jail. He cried about the 85%.
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.”
Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter.
The difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion is the thickness of a prison walls.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
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.
What restrains us from killing is partly fear of punishment, partly moral scruple, and partly what may be described as a sense of humor.