The Queen is dead, long live the King!
You have to hand it to the Brits – they really know how to go all out with the pomp and hoopla around any big royal event. The death of Queen E Two has provided monarchists worldwide with the greatest show in royal history. Aside from the legions of military personnel, bands and choristers that marched and warbled on the day of the big shebang, the airwaves for the last two weeks have been overloaded with retrospectives of her reign, interviews from royal commentators, tributes from politicians new and used, an assortment of reminiscences from those with tenuous ties to the monarch such as corgi breeders, dog psychologists and more…. it was surprising they didn’t interview her hair stylist and manicurist. And between these were sprinkled countless happy or teary-eyed ‘average person on the streets’ clips – everybody fondly remembering good Queen E while they gear up to crown King C3 in the next big extravaganza.
All this attention no doubt warms the hearts of monarchists as it gives a boost to the royal cause, support for which has been declining over the years. Here in Kanadoodle we’re told that less than half of people aged 65+ and less than a third aged 18 – 34 feel any real tie with the monarchy. Since the beginning of QE2’s reign, far more countries have left the British Commonwealth than now remain, but that doesn’t mean Kanadoodle will leave the British Commonwealth any time soon. Our population isn’t so much stridently Republican as blasé about the whole thing – besides, leaving the Commonwealth would require a constitutional change approved by the politicians in every province in the land – a group that has difficulty agreeing that the sun will rise in the east.
Since our politicians are incapable of changing the status quo, like it or not, Kanadoodlians should focus on the advantages. Sure, Republicans find the notion that some chucklehead inheriting a throne, with everyone bowing and scraping before them, is a repugnant curiosity in a modern age of democratic ideals. But Republicans face their own challenges, with an endless string of ethically challenged chuckleheads getting elected to lead the country.
Republicans claim an advantage in that a leader needs talent and skill to win their job, rather than just inheriting it whether they have any talent or skills at all – and they can be tossed out by the will of the people. Royalist supporters point to the ‘stability’ of having a monarch – someone who can devote their entire life to opening shopping malls and waving at adoring throngs without fear of becoming a de-elected king/queen.
Royalist have the sterling example of a monarch to guide their behavior – “Use your knife and fork, Billy – and stop eating like a pig! What WOULD the Queen/King think?” Republicans have to rely on a republic’s icons – rock stars and super jocks, to set the tone: “Use your knife and fork, Billy – and stop eating like a pig. What WOULD…” Woops – let’s chalk that one up for the royalists.
Monarchists derive great pleasure and thrills from all the historic trappings and pageantry associated with royalty. Never mind that, if you looked at any current monarch, they got the job because one of their ancestors won a war of succession between a bunch of megalomaniacs and proved to be the nastiest, most bloodthirsty and ruthless contestant of the lot. Republicans derive great pleasure and thrills from the historic trappings of elections, Parliamentary question period and mud slinging. Never mind that, if you look at any successful politician, they got they job by lying, prevaricating, back-stabbing and looking better on television sound bites than the other ruthless megalomaniacs contesting for the job.
Face the facts Kanadoodle! A constitutional monarch has everything a modern politician dreams of: fame, fortune, everyone bowing and scraping before them, head honcho without being responsible for any of the decisions that get the electorate outraged and, no matter how good, bad or horrible they are at the job, they get it for life. Yes, our current crop of wannabes no doubt dream of rising above the mud – exchanging question period for a crown and scepter. Behold them preening in front of a mirror, getting the tilt of the crown just so on their tiny heads – King Justin T… or perhaps you prefer King Pierre P… King Jugmeet S anyone?
And then those damned republicans will no doubt come and dust off the guillotine.
TL:DR – The monarchy – some can’t live with them and some can’t live without them.