The laws of man may bind him in chains or may put him to death, but they never can make him wise, virtuous, or happy.
more John Quincy Adams quotes
It is precisely this clinging to victimhood as a means of demonstrating one’s virtue and advancing one’s well-being that has led us into a society in which welfare and quotas are “civil rights,” government handouts are “entitlements,” and payment to girls having babies out of wedlock are “compassionate,” while hard-working, ambitious people are “greedy,” punishment of crime is “oppression,” and an independent thinker who stands for courage and self-reliance is dismissed as an “Uncle Tom.”
more J. Tucker Alford quotes
Gun control has proved to be a grievous failure, a means of disarming honest citizens without limiting firepower available to those who prey on the law-abiding. Attempting to use the legal system to punish the weapon rather than the person misusing the weapon is similarly doomed to fail.
more Doug Bandow quotes
For a punishment to be just it should consist of only such gradations of intensity as suffice to deter men from committing crimes.
more Cesare Beccaria quotes
The punishment of death is the war of a nation against a citizen whose destruction it judges to be necessary or useful.
more Cesare Beccaria quotes
Let us revise our views and work from the premise that all laws should be for the welfare of society as a whole and not directed at the punishment of sins.
more John Biggs, Jr. quotes
Virtue is persecuted more by the wicked than it is loved by the good.
more Buddha quotes
The gods had condemned Sisyphus to ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight. They had thought with some reason that there is no more dreadful punishment than futile and hopeless labor.
more Albert Camus quotes
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury... nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb, nor shall be compelled in any Criminal Case to be a witness against himself, not be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
more Constitution of the United States quotes
I hear much of people's calling out to punish the guilty, but very few are concerned to clear the innocent.
more Daniel Defoe quotes
The function of the prosecutor under the federal Constitution is not to tack as many skins of victims as possible against the wall. His function is to vindicate the rights of the people as expressed in the laws and give those accused of crime a fair trial.
more Justice William O. Douglas quotes
The liberty of the press would be an empty sound, and no man would venture to write on any subject, however, pure his purpose, without an attorney at one elbow and a counsel at the other. From minds thus subdued by the fear of punishment, there could issue no works of genius to expand the empire of human reason.
more Thomas Erskine quotes
There is no zeal blinder than that which is inspired with a love of justice against offenders.
more Henry Fielding quotes
There are only two places in the world where time takes precedence over the job to be done. School and prison.
more William Glasser quotes
If we cannot learn, if the only effect upon us of the presence of the dynamiter in our midst is to make us multiply punishments, invent restrictions, increase the number of our official spies, forbid public meetings, interfere with the press, put up gratings -- as in one country they propose to do -- in our House of Commons, scrutinize visitors under official microscopes, request them, as at Vienna, and I think now at Paris also, to be good enough to leave their greatcoats in the vestibules ... I venture to prophesy that there lies before us a bitter and an evil time.
more Auberon Herbert quotes
For my part I think it is a less evil that some criminals should escape, than that the government should play an ignoble part.
more Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. quotes
Every crime is born of necessity.  If you want less crime, you must change the conditions.  Poverty makes crime.  Want, rags, crusts, misfortune - all these awake the wild beast in man, and finally he takes, and takes contrary to law, and becomes a criminal.  And what do you do with him?  You punish him.  Why not punish a man for having consumption?  The time will come when you will see that that is just as logical.  What do you do with the criminal?  You send him to the penitentiary.  Is he made better?  Worse.  The first thing you do is to try to trample out his manhood, by putting an indignity upon him.  You mark him.  You put him in stripes.  At night you put him in darkness.  His feeling for revenge grows.  You make a wild beast of him, and he comes out of that place branded in body and soul, and then you won't let him reform if he wants to.
more Robert G. Ingersoll quotes
It is not only vain, but wicked, in a legislature to frame laws in opposition to the laws of nature, and to arm them with the terrors of death. This is truly creating crimes in order to punish them.
more Thomas Jefferson quotes
Those who have sought the most in gun control have sought the least in the punishment of criminals.
more Robert J. Kukla quotes
The burning of an author’s books, imprisonment for opinion’s sake, has always been the tribute that an ignorant age pays to the genius of its time.
more Joseph Lewis quotes
Now all acts of legislature apparently contrary to natural right and justice, are, in our laws, and must be in the nature of things, considered as void. The laws of nature are the laws of God: A legislature must not obstruct our obedience to him from whose punishments they cannot protect us. All human constitutions which contradict His laws, we are in conscience bound to disobey. Such have been the adjudications of our courts of justice.
more George Mason quotes
We need criminals to identify ourselves with, to secretly envy and to stoutly punish. They do for us the forbidden, illegal things we wish to.
more Karl A. Menninger quotes
Distrust everyone in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.
more Friedrich Nietzsche quotes
An avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty. It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws. He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates his duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
more Thomas Paine quotes
Some writers have so confounded society with government, as to leave little or no distinction between them; whereas they are not only different, but have different origins. Society is produced by our wants, and government by wickedness; the former promotes our happiness positively by uniting our affections, the latter negatively by restraining our vices. The one encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron, the last a punisher. Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one ...
more Thomas Paine quotes
Most of the harm in the world is done by good people, and not by accident, lapse, or omission. It is the result of their deliberate actions, long persevered in, which they hold to be motivated by high ideals toward virtuous ends.
more Isabel Paterson quotes
It is clear that thought is not free if the profession of certain opinions make it impossible to earn a living.
more Bertrand Russell quotes
If the prisoner should ask the judge whether he would be content to be hanged, were he in his case, he would answer no. Then, says the prisoner, do as you would be done to.
more John Selden quotes
It is the deed that teaches, not the name we give it. Murder and capital punishment are not opposites that cancel one another, but similars that breed their own kind.
more George Bernard Shaw quotes
For a government to declare a vice to be a crime, and to punish it as such, is an attempt to falsify the very nature of things. It is as absurd as it would be to declare truth to be a falsehood, or falsehood a truth.
more Lysander Spooner quotes
I consider marijuana the worst of all narcotics, far worse than the use of morphine or cocaine. Under its influence men become beasts... Marijuana destroys life itself. I have no sympathy with those who sell this weed. The government is going to enforce this new law to the letter.
more Judge John Foster Symes quotes
Welfare mostly subsidizes people in poverty, helping few escape from it. In their hearts, most people who are poor would like to be rich, or at least self-sustaining, but this president never talks about how they might achieve that goal. Instead, he criticizes those who made the right choices and now enjoy the fruits of their labor. Rather than use successful people as examples for the poor to follow, the president seeks to punish the rich with higher taxes and more regulations on their businesses.
more Cal Thomas quotes
The executive branch of this government never has, nor will suffer, while I preside, any improper conduct of its officers to escape with impunity.
more George Washington quotes
In Europe, when tobacco was first introduced, it was immediately banned. In Turkey, if you got caught with tobacco, you had your nose slit. China and Russia imposed the death penalty for possession of tobacco.
more Andrew Weil, MD quotes
But once a culture develops sufficiently to become skeptical, the idea of censorship becomes less attractive. To suppress a book or a picture or a sculpture or a play or a film is a terrible act of aggression against the artist who created it. This is a miming of capital punishment; it destroys the life that has been emanated by a life.
more Rebecca West quotes
As one reads history, not in the expurgated editions written for schoolboys and passmen, but in the original authorities of each time, one is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted; and a community is infinitely more brutalised by the habitual employment of punishment than it is by the occasional occurrence of crime.
more Oscar Wilde quotes
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