Irish Genocide

By Joseph R. Lansberry

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In The Moment

From 1845 to 1855 in Ireland, the peasant potato farmers experienced a water mold that led to fatal illness if eaten. This mold, Phytophthora Infestans, caused land lords to evict many of the farmers out to the streets--due to not being able to sell their potatoes--where over 1 million starved and died. The British government would not step in and help the unfortunate farmers; in fact, there was plenty of other food to be eaten however they gave it to the rich believing that the farmers had brought the famine upon themselves for being considered a lazy race.

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Perspective #1 Media Portrayed

Because the potatoes were such--and still are--a popular dish of the Irish and american poor families, along with many poor groups in general, many suffered from the tragedy. Due to the British government neglecting their people, this later became known as a genocide in the late to mid 19th century. Much economic trade ceased with the British economy all over the world for nations didn't want to be associated with them; minor groups mainly however it overall hurt the expansion of the British.

Perspective #2 Media Portrayed

A government making a choice to further expansion in the future? British government deliberately ignores over 1 million of their own people in a famine crisis letting them starve to death. With plenty to spare, they give the bounty of stored provisions to their wealthy as a disciplinary lesson towards the potato farmers for being too lazy in the past years before the Phytophthora disease; a just cause in action or a cruel glance of tyranny resulting in the country's genocide of their own people?

Media Bias Explained

The British government--having more then enough food to give out to the starving irish-- who stood by and watched their people die is something i cannot let bye without a word. To claim that a massive portion of your people are just lazy and don't deserve to live is horrible.

Criticism #1

Much of the British believed it was of divine intervention as of result to the Irish slacking. A will of God for displeasure in their moral failures. Due to this belief, Britain refused to give aid to them as over 1 million died and another 2 million fled the country.

Criticism #2

With the free-market techniques that Britain tried, but failed, the Irish were forced to leave. With neglection from the government not stepping in due to their policies of their economic market system, 1/3 of Ireland's population was gone within less than a decade. Varying opinions say that this neglection was deliberate and they believed the peasant's poverty was self-caused.
The Great Irish Famine: History of Modern Ireland - Facts, Genocide, 1847 (1997)