It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
The world itself is but a large prison, out of which some are daily led to execution.
The perfection of a thing consists in its essence; there are perfect criminals, as there are men of perfect probity.
If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.
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.
One man meets an infamous punishment for that crime which confers a diadem upon another.
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.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
Faults of the head are punished in this world, those of the heart in another; but as most of our vices are compound, so also is their punishment.
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.
It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.
I was put into jail as I was going to the shoemaker's to get a shoe which was mended. When I was let out the next morning, I proceeded to finish my errand, and, having put on my mended shoe, joined a huckleberry party, who were impatient to put themselves under my conduct; and in half an hour -- for the horse was soon tackled -- was in the midst of a huckleberry field, on one of our highest hills, two miles off, and then the State was nowhere to be seen.
He had drawn many a thousand of these rations in prisons and camps, and though he'd never had an opportunity to weight them on scales, and although, being a man of timid nature, he knew no way of standing up for his rights, he, like every other prisoner, had discovered long ago that honest weight was never to be found in the bread-cutting. There was short weight in every ration. The only point was how short. So every day you took a look to soothe your soul - today, maybe, they haven't snitched any.
No written law has been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion.
A just chastisement may benefit a man, though it seldom does; but an unjust one changes all his blood to gall.
The uneven impact of actual enforcement measures tends to mirror and reinforce more general patterns of discrimination (along socioeconomic, racial and ethnic, sexual, and perhaps generational lines) within the society. As a consequence, such enforcement (ineffective as it may be in producing conformity) almost certainly reinforces feelings of alienation already prevalent within major segments of the population.
I asked a man in prison once how he happened to be there and he said he had stolen a pair of shoes. I told him if he had stolen a railroad he would be a United States Senator.
Fast closed with double grills And triple gates–the cell To wicked souls is hell; But to a mind that's innocent 'Tis only iron, wood and stone.