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perfon may infinuate himself into the favour of the public, rent a ftore and turn vendue master; the five per cent. commiffion on all goods he dif poses of is fure and fafe profit, and in time he may make fome money, get credit, and turn merchant; indeed any huckfter or grog-fhop keeper with care, induftry, and a little roguery, will make money faft, and may commence a merchant; a young man who is fent out fupercargo, if he conducts himfelf very prudently, may gain the good will of his friends, and they may fet him up in bufinefs; I knew many fupercargoes who were intrufted with confiderable properties forgot themselves and lived more extravagant than men of fortune; had their merchandize fold at vendue at the laft at less than first cost; and by bad management and diffipation ruined themselves and friends.
From what I have faid, you will very naturally conclude, that though they are ftyled merchants in the West Indies, they are only factors; and here I muft obferve, that I have often wondered how European merchants can poffibly give fuch large and long credits to thofe fators, confidering the precarioufnefs of life, the uncertainty of payments, the diftance of place, and the difficulties and rifques they fo frequently run, even at the Jaft, of getting paid at all, by adopting either mild, litegative, or coercive methods.
"Look round, and fee what others do,
As foon as a man gets poffeffion of fome property, though it may be all on credit, or at best three fourths of it, he is ftimulated by cruel pride and haughty ambition to fignalize himself in fome public character, untill he is elevated, ftep after ftep, as I fhall now mention; the firft honour conferred upon him is that of a juftice of the peace; next he infinuates himself into the favour of the few freeholders of the parish wherein his involved or mortgaged property lies, and gets chofen a reprefentative of the affembly: I have known the most illiterate, rude, aukward tradefmen, fuch as carpenters, bricklayers, mill-wrights, tinkers, taylors, fhavers or barbers, legiflators in the West Indies.
The next manovre is to get himself chofen one of the council or affiftant judges; in order to accomplish which, he artfully infinuates himfelf into the favour of the commander in chief, or the prefident, by giving a few good dinners, &c. &c.
When a man is appointed a juftice of the peace he should have four volumes of Burns Juftice by him; and if he be of a fiery arbitrary nature, he should endeavour to curb and moderate his paffions, to fteer clear of prejudice, and to look upon all men to be as good as himself; and never to be fo weak or filly to think that all the law is contained in Burns Juftice, leaft he brings himself into trouble: Burns Justice is
only an index to part of the
laws" a little
learning is a dangerous thing." I know a ma
giftrate who was put to vaft expence at common
When a man gets into the affembly, or be-
Any man, though ignorant of the law, may be appointed chief or affiftant judge, which I think is very improper, for none but old experienced barristers fhould fill fuch places. Should you be elevated to a tribunal of justice, say little, look grave and attentive, and you may pass for a man of sense; but I would advise you, however, to pay particular attention to the evidences, to let common sense direct you, and not to be
baffled by the quirks or chicanery of lawyers; and least your memory may prove false to forget the obligation you entered into, to write down and get by wrote, or to paste it over the place you fit when adminiftering justice, an oath, as follows:
You do fwear, that you will, according to the best of your skill, confcience, and judgment, do equal right, law and juftice, to his Majefty and all his fubjects and people, both rich and poor, without favour or affection, hatred or malice, or having regard to any person whatsoever that hath any matter, caufe or any thing at any time depending before you.
So help you GOD.
This may prevent you from cenfure before God and man; for every fubject, the meaneft as well as the greateft, has an equal right to justice. Juftice fhould not be bought or fold, nor fhould it be delayed from any man, for "every man has a natural unalienable right to look upon himself equal to any man whatsoever." It is not eftates or titles that makes one man better than another; men only excell in fouls and fentiments. When judges or magiftrates fhew favour or affection, hatred or malice, to any par ticular individual (even to the poor tar, who has been barbarously treated on his voyage by the
remorseless Guinea captain) who applies to them for juftice, it is a violation of the law, and a strong proof of the depravity of the human
How odious muft men appear who are chosen out from among the reft to diftribute justice, when they are capable of corruption?-and I am forry to be obliged to say that there are too many of this kind, not only in Jamaica, but all over the West Indies.
"When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when the wicked beareth rule, the people murmur.'
From all I have now faid, you may be affured, that if you do not behave yourself courteously, humble, and fubmiffive, and keep your tongue as it were with a bit and bridle, and your mind clofe to yourself, you never will be a great man: Shakespeare fays most pointedly,
But it is a common proof,
"That lowlinefs is young ambition's ladder,
Those who are born in the country are called Creoles, the men in general, save only those who drink ftrong liquors to excefs, are of a fickly, pale, yellowish complexion, meagre, weak, and emaciated