The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.
On average, drug prisoners spend more time in federal prison than rapists, who often get out on early release because of the overcrowding in prison caused by the Drug War.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
The object of punishment is prevention from evil; it never can be made impulsive to good.
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.
Care should be taken that the punishment does not exceed the guilt; and also that some men do not suffer for offenses for which others are not even indicted.
The public have more interest in the punishment of an injury than he who receives it.
No matter how you seem to fatten on a crime, that can never be good for the bee which is bad for the hive.
Justice is that virtue of the soul which is distributive according to desert.
I never saw a man who looked With such a wistful eye Upon that little tent of blue Which prisoners call the sky.
Women now have choices. They can be married, not married, have a job, not have a job, be married with children, unmarried with children. Men have the same choice we've always had: work, or prison.
He was a first-time nonviolent possible offender, ... And under the mandatory minimums, he was put in prison for 15 years. Not only does the punishment not fit the crime, but the mandatory minimums don't give judges any discretion to look at the background of the case, to read into the specifics of the case. I don't know a judge who really is in favor of the mandatory minimums.
Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our duty is to furnish it well.
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.