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intercept any of the benefits similarly won for themselves by others, or any of those which Nature has conferred on them; no legal penalties can rightly be inflicted on him. But when, by murder, theft, assault, or minor aggression, he has broken through these limits, the community is warranted alike by absolute and by relative expediency in putting him under restraint. On the relative expediency of doing this we need say nothing: it is demonstrated by social experience. Its absolute expediency not being so manifest, we will proceed to point out how it is deducible from the ultimate laws of life.
All life depends on the maintenance of certain natural relations between actions and their results. This is true of life in both its lowest and its highest forms. If respiration does not supply oxygen to the blood, as in the normal order of things it should do, but instead supplies carbonic acid, death very soon results. If the swallowing of food is not followed by the usual organic sequencesthe contractions of the stomach, and the pouring into it of gastric juice-indigestion arises, and the energies flag. If active movements of the limbs fail in exciting the heart to supply blood more rapidly, or if the extra current propelled by the heart is greatly retarded by an aneurism through which it passes, speedy prostration ensuesvitality rapidly ebbs. In which, and endless like cases, we see that bodily life depends on the maintenance of the established connections between physiological causes and their consequences.
Among the intellectual processes, the same thing holds. If certain impressions made on the senses do not induce the appropriate muscular adjustments—if the brain is clouded with wine, or consciousness is preoccupied, or the perceptions are naturally obtuse; the bodily move ments are so ill-controlled that accidents ensue. Where, as in paralytic patients, the natural link between mental
CONDITIONS TO COMPLETE LIFE.
impressions and the appropriate movements is broken, the life is greatly vitiated. And when, as during insanity, evidence fitted, according to the usual order of thought, to produce certain convictions, produces convictions of an opposite kind; conduct is reduced to chaos, and life endangered or cut short. So ito is with the more involved phenomena. Just as we here find that, throughout both its physical and intellectual divisions, healthful life implies continuance of the established successions of antecedents and consequents among our vital actions; so shall we find it throughout the moral division. In our dealings with external Nature and our fellow men, there are relations of cause and effect, on the maintenance of which, as on the maintenance of the internal ones above instanced, complete life depends. Conduct of this or that kind tends ever to bring results which are pleasurable or painfulaction to bring its appropriate reaction; and the welfare of every one demands that these natural connections shall not be interfered with.
To speak more specifically, we see that in the order of Nature, inactivity entails want; and that, conversely, by activity are secured the means of material benefit. There is an ordained connection between exertion and the fulfil ment of certain imperative needs. If, now, this ordained connection is broken—if labour of body and mind have been gone through, and the produce of the labour is intercepted by another, one of the conditions to complete life is unfulfilled. The defrauded person is physically injured by deprival of the wherewithal to make good the wear and tear he had undergone; and if the robbery be continually repeated, he must die. Where all men are dishonest a reflex evil results. When, throughout a society, the natural relation between labour and its produce is habitually broken, the lives of many are not only directly undermined; but the lives of all are indirectly under mined by the destruction of the motive for labour, and by the consequent poverty. Thus, to demand that there shall be no breach of the normal sequence between labour and the benefits obtained by labour, is to demand that the laws of life shall be respected.
What we call the right of property, is simply a corollary from certain necessary conditions to complete existence: it is a formulated recognition of the necessary relation between expenditure of force and the need for force-sustaining objects obtainable by the expenditure of Torce—a recognition in full of a relation which cannot be wholly ignored without causing death. And all else regarded as individual rights, are indirect implications of like nature-similarly insist on certain relations between man and man, as conditions without which there cannot be completely maintained that correspondence between inner and outer actions which constitutes life. It is not, as some moralists have absurdly asserted, that such rights are derived from human legislation; nor is it, as asserted by others with absurdity almost as great, that there is no basis for them save the inductions of immediate expediency. These rights are deducible from the established connections between our acts and their results. As certainly as there are conditions which must be fulfilled before life can exist, so certainly are there conditions which must be fulfilled before complete life can be enjoyed by the respective members of a society; and those which we call the requirements of justice, simply answer to the most important of such conditions.
Hence, if life is our legitimate aim—if absolute morality means, as it does, conformity to the laws of complete life; then absolute morality warrants the restraint of those who force their fellow-citizens into non-conformity. Our justifi. cation is, that life is impossible save under certain condi. tions; that it cannot be perfect unless these conditions are
WHAT MAY BE DEMANDED OF THE CRIMINAL.
naintained unbroken; and that if it is right for us to live, it is right for us to remove any one who either breaks these conditions in our persons or constrains us to break them.
Such being the basis of our right to coerce the crimi nal, there next come the questions :-What is the legiti. mate extent of the coercion? Can we from this source derive authority for certain demands on him ? and are there any similarly-derived limits to such demands ? To both these questions there are affirmative answers.
First, we fină authority for demanding restitution or compensation. Conformity to the laws of life being the substance of absolute morality; and the social regulations which absolute morality dictates, being those which make this conformity possible; it is a manifest corollary that whoever breaks these regulations, may be justly required to undo, as far as possible, the wrong he has done. The object being to maintain the conditions essential to complete life, it follows that, when one of these conditions has been transgressed, the first thing to be required of the transgressor is, that he shall put matters as nearly as may be in the state they previously were. The property stolen shall be restored, or an equivalent for it given. Any one injured by an assault, shall have his surgeon's bill paid, compensation for lost time, and also for the suffering he has borne. And similarly in all cases of infringed rights.
Second, we are warranted by this highest authority in restricting the actions of the offender as much as is need. ful to prevent further aggressions. Any citizen who will not allow others to fulfil the conditions to complete lifewho takes away the produce of his neighbour's labour, oi deducts from that bodily health and comfort which his neighbour has earned by good conduct, must be forced to desist. And society is warranted in using such fürce as
may be found requisite. Equity justifies the fellow-citi zens of such a man in limiting the free exercise of his faculties to the extent necessary for preserving the free exercise of their own faculties.
But now mark that absolute morality countenances no restraint beyond this—no gratuitous inflictions of pain, no revengeful penalties. Complete life being the end of mo. rality; and the conditions it insists on being such as make possible this complete life to all members of a community; we cannot rightly abrogate these conditions, even in the person of a criminal, further than is needful to prevent greater abrogations of them. Freedom to fulfil the lawe of life being the thing insisted on, to the end that the sum of life may be the greatest possible; it follows that the life of the offender must be taken into account as an item in this sum; and that we must permit him to live as completely as consists with social safety. It is commonly said that the criminal loses all his rights. This may be so according to law, but it is not so according to justice. Such portion of them only is justly taken away, as cannot be left to him without danger to the community. Those exercises of faculty, and consequent benefits, which are possible under the necessary restraint, cannot be equitably denied. If any do not think it proper that we should be thus regardful of an offender's claims, let them consider for a moment the lesson which Nature reads us.
We do not find that those divinely-ordained laws of life by which bodily health is maintained, are miraculously suspended in the person of the prisoner. In him, as in others, good digestion waits on appetite. If he is wounded, the healing process goes on with the usual rapidity, When he is ill, as much effect is expected from the vis medicatrix naturae by the medical officer, as in one who has not transgressed. His perceptions yield him guidance as they did before he was imprisoned; and he is capable