What other human disasters, resulting from bureaucratic incompetence, could be targets for another “modest proposal”?

Expert Answers info

Maureen Green eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write104 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

Jonathan Swift's "A Modest Proposal" famously suggested that those throughout the British kingdom eat Irish babies in order to prevent, among other things, overpopulation of the poor, thereby reducing the burden on tax-paying Brits.

The first bureaucratic nightmare that comes to mind is the Flint, Michigan water crisis, widely reported in early 2016. The facts of the crisis are nearly as horrific as Swift's own proposal, where the long-term health and well-being of thousands were sacrificed by those people's elected officials for short-term economic gain.

Just as Swift took his readers to task for their faux gentility and proclaimed Christian brotherhood, so could a contemporary satirist address how Michigan's government put so many unsuspecting citizens in harm's way without their knowledge or adequate justification.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial