Benjamin Franklin’s “Modest Proposal”?





I have to write a 2 page essay in MLA format discussing if Benjamin Franklin had wrote a "Modest Proposal" (based off Swift's "Modest Proposal") to King George III, what would he propose. I'm having problems coming up with anything. It's difficult to compare The Declaration of Independence and A Modest Proposal. Any ideas? I'm not asking for anyone to come up with my paper, I just need some ideas to get the ball rolling.Thanks in advance!



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One Response to “Benjamin Franklin’s “Modest Proposal”?”

  1. humstrum says:

    Well if you read A Modest Proposal, you should remember what it’s about. Swift was making fun of England’s view of Ireland, and suggesting that they eat Irish babies.The American colonists felt pretty much this way about England in the mid 1700s. The colonists suffered many abuses, real and imagined, at the hands of King George III. The last 2/3 of the Declaration of Independence details some of these abuses. Colonists had no right of free trade with other nations. They had no right to fair public trials. Or to be free from British troops stationed here during peacetime. They had no representation in Parliament to vote on how they were taxed, or to petition the king, to write him with requests and suggestions about how they were to be ruled.In fact the revolution began not with the colonies wanting independence, but with them wanting the same rights as other British subjects, English people. Why should they have less rights just for living in colonies across an ocean?So Franklin (always a sparkling wit) might have suggested that since the only purpose of the American colonies was to produce food and wealth for Britain, why not have the Brits just eat Americans? They’re not actually -citizens- of Britain; they don’t have the rights of citizens, they’re not represented in the government, the Brits show them no respect at all. So why not just eat them?You can’t eat the Red Indians (that’s what the Brits called them then) because they’re filled with disease. They’re dropping like flies! (Of course they were dying in large numbers from diseases they got from the White Man, for which they had no resistance.) So don’t eat them. Feed the to the colonists, then eat the colonists that survive!Think how Americans would taste! People from Massachusetts and New Hampshire will be stringy and tough. Pennsylvania, now that started out as a Quaker settlement, so people from there will taste like oatmeal! Virginians will be soft and tender, but will taste like tobacco and cotton. Rhode Island is small so it would take several Rhode Islanders to fill a casserole.Get the idea? 8