Monday, March 04, 2013

Shhhhh...don't say it too loudly. Maybe it's time for the Queen to cut back her duties

Much like the observation I made about how no one is allowed to criticize Catherine and get away with it, there is another topic that seems to be off-limits. Despite the Queen's age and her recent trip to the hospital, one thing has become clear.

Do not question whether the Queen should scale back her royal duties.

Nope. She will die with her boots firmly strapped on, thank you very much.

Look at people scoffing at the Pope retiring. Regardless of how gracefully he did it. Our Queen would never do that! If she were to scale back, would people see it as a dereliction of her royal duties or breaking her sacred oath? She was 27 when she made that vow. Could something have changed in the interim?

Much like the any discussion about her abdicating, there seems to be no question about delegating. Whatsoever. That's what people say. What the Queen herself thinks is unknown. But looking back over her medical history, as the Telegraph so helpfully did we can see that she is made of good stock. Which is very impressive but doesn't change the fact that she is almost 87.

Another thing that has become clear. Though maybe people are not willing to admit it lest it jinx everything.

The Queen is human. And mortal.

And this must come as a shock because she seems as though she will live forever. The Victorians must have felt the same way about their Queen too. But look what happened. While Queen Elizabeth seems to be superhuman in terms of her work ethic, she gets ill. She goes into the hospital, media camp outside, her obituary one click away from being posted. Could it be that she needs to start slowing down?


Slow down? How dare you insinuate that she might be human and mortal. That she might have limits. What's up with that?

I don't think anyone would suggest that the Queen completely retire. (Actually I did, but never mind). Nor are they suggesting she should move into a retirement community where no one will ever visit her. Quite the contrary. People may think she can go on forever and take pride in her stamina but mark my words. The older she gets, the louder the question will become.

As unquestioningly dedicated to the service of her nation as she has been, there are benefits to passing the torch. Especially while she is still cognizant enough to do so. She has a son waiting in the wings and a younger generation growing older by the minute. All ready to help out if need be. And wouldn't it be good for them to have a chance to shine while they're all still photogenic and vertical?

Maybe the time has come for her to seriously consider...


© Marilyn Braun 2013

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Rman said...


Once again, a very good article. No doubt I wish The Queen to continue to have many more years of great health and happiness.

I do think reality is kicking in that she's an older woman now and those years of thinking that she has her whole life of duty ahead is now slipping away. It seems like if you even mention the thought of Her Majesty taking it easy a bit, people get a bit edgy.

I think it's good that at age 86, she's still able to get around better than most and able to carry on her job as Monarch. Although, I think there will come a time that she will have to slow down a bit and have Charles & Camilla, William & Catherine, Harry and the rest of the family take on a great deal of royal duties. She's approching her 90's and that's just the reality.

I just hope that if she decide to step back a bit and focus on her health, the world will allow her to do it and not think she's turning her back on her vow to royal duty.

Marilyn Braun said...

Hi Rman,

Thanks! :)

The Queen is a remarkable woman and has more than proven her dedication to her role. I think people just expect it this to go on and on when, like you said, the reality is, she is getting older. As you say, any suggestion to do otherwise makes people edgy. Completely agree with you.

I don't quite know if people want to acknowledge the limitations of her age. Too busy taking pride in this fact. She can set records for being the oldest monarch in history, eventually the longest reigning, the longest married, but at what cost to her personal health?

Better to delegate while she can rather than when she is too incapacitated and the choice has to be made for her. More dignified that way. If anyone has earned the right to put their feet up it is HM and Prince Philip!