We don't seem to be able to check crime, so why not legalize it and then tax it out of business.
One should respect public opinion insofar as is necessary to avoid starvation and keep out of prison, but anything that goes beyond this is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny.
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
If it's near dinner-time, the foreman takes out his watch when the jury has retired, and says: "Dear me, gentlemen, ten minutes to five, I declare! I dine at five, gentlemen." "So do I," says everybody else, except two men who ought to have dined at three and seem more than half disposed to stand out in consequence. The foreman smiles, and puts up his watch:--"Well, gentlemen, what do we say, plaintiff or defendant, gentlemen?
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
It is the deed that teaches, not the name we give it. Murder and capital punishment are not opposites that cancel one another, but similars that breed their own kind.
One man meets an infamous punishment for that crime which confers a diadem upon another.
There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.
The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
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.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
Why would anyone expect him to come out smarter? He went to prison for three years, not Princeton.
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.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
A man will be imprisoned in a room with a door that's unlocked and opens inwards, as long as it does not occur to him to pull rather than push.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.