Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
Whatever is worthy to be loved for anything is worthy of preservation. A wise and dispassionate legislator, if any such should ever arise among men, will not condemn to death him who has done or is likely to do more service than injury to society. Blocks and gibbets are the nearest objects with legislators, and their business is never with hopes or with virtues.
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.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.
The worst prison is not of stone. It is of a throbbing heart, outraged by an infamous life.
Civilization is maintained by a very few people in a small number of places and we need only some bombs and a few prisons to blot it out altogether.
It was only when I lay there on the rotting prison straw that I sensed within myself the first stirrings of good. Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not between states nor between social classes nor between political parties, but right through every human heart, through all human hearts. And that is why I turn back to the years of my imprisonment and say, sometimes to the astonishment of those about me, bless you, prison, for having been a part of my life.
Intellectual despair results in neither weakness nor dreams, but in violence. It is only a matter of knowing how to give vent to one's rage; whether one only wants to wander like madmen around prisons, or whether one wants to overturn them.
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!
Prosecution I have managed to avoid; but I have been arrested, charged in a police court, have refused to be bound over, and thereupon have been unconditionally released - to my great regret; for I have always wanted to know what going to prison was like.
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.
Prison makes you a better judge of character. You pick up on people much faster.
In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.