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Prison Quotes

The idea that the sole aim of punishment is to prevent crime is obviously grounded upon the theory that crime can be prevented, which is almost as dubious as the notion that poverty can be prevented.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 12

The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
 

Bertrand Russell
Total votes: 46

There's no greater threat to our independence, to our cherished freedoms and personal liberties than the continual, relentless injection of these insidious poisons into our system. We must decide whether we cherish independence from drugs, without which there is no freedom.

William Von Raab
Total votes: 13

Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.

Antonin Scalia
Total votes: 11

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.”

Father James Keller
Total votes: 13

Show me the prison, Show me the jail, Show me the prisoner whose life has gone stale. And I'll show you a young man with so many reasons why And there, but for fortune, go you or I.

Phil Ochs
Total votes: 3

When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.

Mike Tyson
Total votes: 18

Why would anyone expect him to come out smarter? He went to prison for three years, not Princeton.

Dan Duva
Total votes: 14

No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.

Carrie Chapman Catt
Total votes: 12

We're in a war. People who blast some pot on a casual basis are guilty of treason.

Daryl Gates
Total votes: 9

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.

Daniel Berrigan
Total votes: 9

I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement.

Calvin Coolidge
Total votes: 18

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.

Jessica Mitford
Total votes: 16

Concepts of justice must have hands and feet to carry out justice in every case in the shortest possible time and the lowest possible cost. That is the challenge to every lawyer and judge in America.

Warren E. Burger
Total votes: 12

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.

James Usher
Total votes: 11


Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Total votes: 10

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.

Jimmy Hoffa
Total votes: 20

Whatever you think of de Sade, he was a complex figure and we should not look for easy answers with him. He was, strangely perhaps, against the death penalty, and he was never put in prison for murders or anything like that.

Philip Kaufman
Total votes: 8

There is a point at which even justice does injury.

Sophocles
Total votes: 14

How dreadful it is when the right judge judges wrong.

Sophocles
Total votes: 7

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.

Winston Churchill
Total votes: 7


Most people fancy themselves innocent of those crimes of which they cannot be convicted.

Seneca
Total votes: 10

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.

Walter E. Williams
Total votes: 18

In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.

Eldridge Cleaver
Total votes: 12

When it comes to freedom, we are but prisoners of our own desires.

Eric Schaub
Total votes: 10