Page:Transportation and colonization.djvu/105

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under a proper system of penal discipline would have been visited with speedy and condign punishment, were generally overlooked, and a variety of indulgences afforded, utterly inconsistent with a state of penal discipline.

This has been especially the case all along, with convicts assigned either as domestic servants, or in any capacity whatever in the colonial towns. To consider transportation as a punishment, in the case of a large majority of such convicts, is pre-eminently absurd. Those of them that are employed as domestic servants have generally much lighter labour to perform, and much better fare, than free servants in the mother country; and after a few years' service, they obtain tickets of leave, or certificates of freedom; when they begin the world for themselves with prospects of success in business, or with means of dissipation, utterly beyond the reach of the industrious classes in England. Those, on the other hand, who are employed as clerks or shopmen, have probably a much better situation, and more money to spend in profligate courses, than they ever had at home; a state of things which naturally induces intolerable impudence and assumption. In the case of convicts assigned to settlers in the country, their condition depends in great measure on the character of the master, and in particular in-