Nothing can be more abhorrent to democracy than to imprison a person or keep him in prison because he is unpopular. This is really the test of civilization.
On a planet that increasingly resembles one huge Maximum Security prison, the only intelligent choice is to plan a jail break.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
No obligation to justice does force a man to be cruel, or to use the sharpest sentence.
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.
They were being driven to a prison, through no fault of their own, in all probability for life. In comparison, how much easier it would be to walk to the gallows than to this tomb of living horrors!
Justice is justice though it's always delayed and finally done only by mistake.
History is full of people who went to prison or were burned at the stake for proclaiming their ideas. Society has always defended itself.
I have paid no poll-tax for six years. I was put into a jail once on this account, for one night; and, as I stood considering the walls of solid stone, I could not help being struck with the foolishness of that institution which treated me as if I were mere flesh and blood and bones, to be locked up...I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through, before they could get to be as free as I was.
If punishment reaches not the mind and makes not the will supple, it hardens the offender.
To make punishments efficacious, two things are necessary. They must never be disproportioned to the offence, and they must be certain.
Prison continues, on those who are entrusted to it, a work begun elsewhere, which the whole of society pursues on each individual through innumerable mechanisms of discipline.
We have our own system, ... and journalists in our system are not put in prison for embarrassing the government by revealing things the government might not wish to have revealed. The important thing is that our system, under which journalists can write without fear or favor, should continue.
America is the land of the second chance – and when the gates of the prison open, the path ahead should lead to a better life.
If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.
I was in prison, and you came unto me. Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
~(Jesus Christ) Matthew 25:36, 40