A Modest Proposal is brilliant, biting, hilarious satire, that is as horrifyingly relevant in 2020 as it was in 1729. This reads like one of those brilliant editorials from The Onion, or a Hannity monologue.
I am embarrassed to admit that, until last week, I had never read this essay. I knew it existed, but I never made the effort, and I am so glad that I finally did.
My education wasn’t particularly diverse, broad, or focused on art and literature. I went to a parochial school for elementary education, and they were more interested in indoctrination and spreading religious propaganda than they were at actually educating us. We learned the sort of facts that can’t be denied, like math and stuff, but history, art, music, and literature were all presented from a clear and deliberate point of view that encouraged blind devotion and adherence, working backwards from a conclusion. I was never encouraged to ask questions, learn independently, or encouraged to challenge myself outside of the classroom.
By the time I was in middle school, I was struggling to deal with my abusive father, and I just did what I had to in school to keep my grades up and not fail. My teachers were fantastic, but the curriculum was very narrow, and there was little appreciation for art and literature in it. When I got into high school, I was working full time on Star Trek. I had a magnificent on-set tutor who took me all the way from grade 9 to grade 12, who encouraged me to do all the things my previous educators had not, but by that time it was just too late for me. I have regretted all of this, from the moment I became aware of it in my 30s, and I’ve been working hard to educate myself in the middle of my life, since I was not educated fully at the beginning of my life.
I am so embarrassed and disappointed that my education is a mile wide and half an inch deep. I realized this years ago, and I’ve been doing what I can to educate myself, using college lectures that are online, and by reading as much as I can, to expose myself to the great works of art and literature that my parents didn’t care about, and my educators didn’t teach me about.
There’s a ton of study available to you, if you want to go that way. Here’s the Wikipedia link to get you started:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Modest_Proposal
This is about 26 minutes long, including my introduction. I hope you’ll listen, and I’d love your feedback, if you do.