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Many a wise person has pondered the plight of the prisoner. From Mark Twain to Oscar Wilde to Fyodor Dostoevsky, the issue of imprisonment has inspired many heartfelt remarks. The following quotes speak to our intellect as well as our emotions. In a society that rushes to warehouse human lives, we urge you to slow down, pause, and contemplate the unique reality of imprisonment. We hope you will find yourself thinking - perhaps even feeling - that we can do better.

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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.
~Walter Savage Landor
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Our measure of rewards and punishments is most partial and incomplete, absurdly inadequate, utterly worldly; and we wish to continue it into the next world. Into that next and awful world we strive to pursue men, and send after them our impotent paltry verdicts of condemnation or acquittal. We set up our paltry little rod to measure heaven immeasurable.
~William Makepeace Thackeray
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Hanging was the worst use a man could be put to.
~Sir Henry Wotton
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To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder.
~Albert Einstein
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Pardon is the virtue of victory.
~Giuseppe Mazzini
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Virtue pardons the wicked, as the sandal-tree perfumes the axe which strikes it.
~Moslih Eddin
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Clemency alone makes us equal to the gods.
~Claudian
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It behooves us always to bear in mind, that while actions are always to be judged by the immutable standard of right and wrong, the judgments which we pass upon men must be qualified by considerations of age, country, station, and other accidental circumstances; and it will then be found that he who is most charitable in his judgment is generally the least unjust.
~Robert Southey
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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
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Law is merely the expression of the will of the strongest for the time being, and therefore laws have no fixity, but shift from generation to generation.
~Henry Brooks Adams
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