A Modest Proposal.

Essay by brandih2 November 2003

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The satirical essay, A Modest Proposal, discusses how the consideration of others as equal entities had not been taken into account in Ireland. Rather they were exploited unmercifully by the British government.

While in Ireland Swift observed that the Irish peasants citizens were too poor to feed their families with the staggering poverty and over population among the lower classes of Ireland. To solve the problem of the poverty-stricken, oppressed and uneducated population of Catholics in Ireland, Swift proposes that thousands of the children should be killed and eaten. This will help both the overpopulated poor, who can't afford to care for their children anyway, and the rich, who will get a good meal out of the whole process.

As soon as introduction Swift points out what the purpose will be for his proposal:

First, eating the poor children will solve the problem of population among the papists, or the Catholics. Second, it will make the remaining papists richer, since they will have such valuable commodities to sell in exchange for rent credit, etc. Third, it will help the economy since less money will have to be spent on the upbringing of so many poor children. Lastly, will produce a better cultural environment for Ireland as a whole, encouraging marriage and the charms of the tavern.

Ironically though, his intentions in offering such a proposal sheds light on the horrible situation of English/Irish tensions in Ireland. As a result, the proposal can be given and received with seriousness which proves that everyone involved has lost the thinnest shred of human decency and respect.