No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.
When is conduct a crime, and when is a crime not a crime? When Somebody Up There -- a monarch, a dictator, a Pope, a legislator -- so decrees.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
Experts and the educated elite have replaced what worked with what sounded good. Society was far more civilized before they took over our schools, prisons, welfare programs, police departments and courts. It's high time we ran these people out of our lives and went back to common sense.
The world itself is but a large prison, out of which some are daily led to execution.
I have been studying how I may compare this prison where I live unto the world; Shut up in the prison of their own consciences.
There is no greater punishment of wickedness that that it is dissatisfied with itself and its deeds.
Any punishment that does not correct, that can merely rouse rebellion in whoever has to endure it, is a piece of gratuitous infamy which makes those who impose it more guilty in the eyes of humanity, good sense and reason, nay a hundred times more guilty than the victim on whom the punishment is inflicted.
There is no peace because the making of peace is at least as costly as the making of war - at least as exigent, at least as disruptive, at least as liable to bring disgrace and prison and death in its wake.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
I can tell you this on a stack of Bibles: prisons are archaic, brutal, unregenerative, overcrowded hell holes where the inmates are treated like animals with absolutely not one humane thought given to what they are going to do once they are released. You're an animal in a cage and you're treated like one.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
The best situation of all, and one frequently utilized, is for jails and prisons to allow volunteer ministers of all faiths to enter prisons and offer their services to the inmates who want them. That way, the religious needs of inmates are met but without government funds being spent.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
Those magistrates who can prevent crime, and do not, in effect encourage it.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.