Trial by jury itself, instead of being a security to persons who are accused, shall be a delusion, a mockery, and a snare.
Every crime has, in the moment of its perpetration, Its own avenging angel--dark misgiving, An ominous sinking at the inmost heart.
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.
I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.
The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
Nor cell, nor chain, nor dungeon speaks to the murderer like the voice of solitude.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
The contagion of crime is like that of the plague. Criminals collected together corrupt each other; they are worse than ever when at the termination of their punishment they re-enter society.
It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
Taught from infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
One of the many lessons that one learns in prison is, that things are what they are and will be what they will be.
Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
It is true you cannot eat freedom and you cannot power machinery with democracy. But then neither can political prisoners turn on the light in the cells of a dictatorship.