I've never made any secret that I'm not a monarchist. It is in the tagline for my blog. I do things which conflict with that. For instance, I avidly collect magazines and some memorabilia whenever a royal event happens. I also read articles and lurk on message royal message boards. Not to mention that I went to Britain for William and Catherine's wedding and hit royal landmarks during my recent trip.
I'm a complicated individual. Don't judge me.
However, I also disagree with the monarchy. Not based on anything political but on principle. The idea of bowing down to someone because of an accident of their birth is an anathema to me. During twitter arguments I secretly rejoice when a republican has made a valid point and fume when a monarchist has shot it down with a predicable, yet valid, one. I have a hard time understanding monarchists who admire the royals for the sake of admiring them. Showing deference because they believe royals and those in authority are somehow 'better' than the rest of us. It is just not true.
On this occasion in particular, my republican leanings make me wonder what we are celebrating for. The Queen's longevity? She definitely has great genetics. Sure, her stellar sense of duty should be acknowledged but it also goes without saying. Yet people try. At the rate we are exhausting saccharine platitudes, will there be anything left to say in the future? Is it any wonder the republicans are vociferously presenting the other side? In all honesty, I think members of the Republican movement make themselves look bad when they try to argue against it. Railing against an 89 year old woman would make anyone look bad.
However, sometimes you can also have too much of a good thing. In the last four years we have had the royal wedding, Diamond jubilee, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, now this. Planning for her 90th birthday is underway and there is even speculation about her Platinum jubilee in 2022. Haven't we run out of cake yet?
Despite all of this, reading the coverage about Queen Elizabeth II becoming the longest serving monarch in British history, I can't help but feel a small sense of pride. She made it! Looking at photographs of her, I see her evolution, the growing respect. Her sense of duty is unquestionable and all in all, I would say she has been an asset to her realms. History will be kind to her. Because she has set the bar so high, the same cannot be said about those that come after her.
Based on this, getting off the fence has its appeal. Even if it only for one day. Despite this temptation, I know that I will never be a monarchist (nor a true republican), but I will always remain fascinated.
© Marilyn Braun 2015
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