&T. 34] THE POLICY OF THE CASTLE 257
I should reproach myself for the rest of my life with not having put my opinion on record that, in the present state of feeling, the law is not strong enough as it stands. For the ordinary law to be sufficient to repress crime it is necessary that the majority of the population be on the side of the injured person, and in the disturbed parts of Ireland the vast majority are, in cases of an agrarian nature, invariably on the side of the criminal. In spite, then, of all my wishes being that we could trust to the ordinary law, I must repeat my conviction that to make up our minds to face the winter without stronger powers would be very dangerous. If her Majesty decides upon coercive legislation, what form is it to take ? . . . The one remedy suggested by every landlord and every agent is the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act; and though the opinion of one class, particularly when in a great state of alarm and indignation, should certainly not be held conclusive as to the necessity of strong measures, it may nevertheless, if strong measures are resolved upon, be a good guide as to what direction they should take. The same remedy as to the whole of Connaught except Sligo is recommended by the police inspectors in their answer to a recent circular. Authority would therefore point to a suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act as the proper remedy, and common sense would appear to make the same suggestion. The sudden imprisonment of some of those who are known to instigate or to commit these crimes would strike general terror in a way that nothing else would, for no man would know how far he was suspected or whether his own turii might not come next. . . .'
VOL. i. S