BANISHMENT

Banishment for a period or for life, punishment to which one condemns delinquents, or those one wishes to appear as such.

Not long ago one banished outside the sphere of jurisdiction a petty thief, a petty forger, a man guilty of an act of violence. The result was that he became a big robber, a forger on a big scale, and murderer within the sphere of another jurisdiction. It is as if we threw into our neighbours' fields the stones which incommode us in our own.

Those who have written on the rights of men, have been much tormented to know for certain if a man who has been banished from his fatherland still belongs to his fatherland. It is nearly the same thing as asking if a gambler who has been driven away from the gaming-table is still one of the gamblers.

If to every man it is permitted by natural right to choose his fatherland, he who has lost the right of citizen can, with all the more reason, choose for himself a new fatherland; but can he bear arms against his former fellow-citizens? There are a thousand examples of it. How many French protestants naturalized in Holland, England and Germany have served against France, and against armies containing their own kindred and their own brothers! The Greeks who were in the King of Persia's armies made war on the Greeks their former compatriots. One has seen the Swiss in the Dutch service fire on the Swiss in the French service. It is still worse than to fight against those who have banished you; for, after all, it seems less dishonest to draw the sword for vengeance than to draw it for money.

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