I do not understand the fascination with the Royals, and not just the British fascination but the almost universal interest in the machinations of a family whose position is derived from a mysterious and as yet unseen “God” and the fortunes of birth.
At least in the origins of the Crown, before a more civilized England, there were the battles, intrigues, and violent ascensions to the throne from the various competing kingdoms. The Tower of London, the scene of so many catastrophic separations of the “Head” from the “State” is reduced to nothing more than a tourist attraction.
I bet the job of Royal Executioner isn’t even filled anymore.
Why the fascination?
The current monarch, Queen Elizabeth, ascended to the throne in 1953. Prince Charles has been the heir apparent since that moment, filling his time with marrying, divorcing, and marrying again (some would say up, some down) while he waits for the long awaited “The Queen is Dead, Long Live the King.”
Wouldn’t be ironic if he went first? As the Angel of Death approached, all he could say was, “Are you freaking kidding me? I am this close…” Then, oblivion.
The British Royal Family is worth about eighty-eight billion dollars. Depending on what reference sources you use, the cost of maintaining the family is forty million dollars, but rental income on the royal properties paid to the government is 160 million so, according to some sources, the British Government makes money on the family.
Either way, it would seem to me that being gainfully employed as a Royal hardly seems of any value to society. I suppose the Queen, or King, bears certain responsibilities, but what about the rest of them? You don’t see many Princes, or Dukes, or Earls leading great armies in battle or commanding naval armadas harassing the Spanish or the Portuguese anymore.
Not only does the sun set on the British Empire, but it barely extends beyond the British Isles. All those criminals they transported to Australia have turned it into a more powerful nation than England.
Even Barbados is now independent of the Crown. It is only a matter of time before Northern Ireland regains their rightful independence. The Scots may have voted to stay within the United Kingdom, but the Brits leave them alone anyway. The Scots have always managed their own destiny.
The once mighty British Empire, the vaunted United Kingdom of yore, is but a shadow of its former self.
Yet, if any of the Royals so much as pass wind, it makes headlines in the tabloids across the globe.
The coronation of Charles, should that ever happen, will dominate the news feeds for weeks leading up to the ceremony and will be outdone only by the coverage of the funeral for the Queen.
Now I am sure the Queen is an amiable woman. Clearly she has served the Empire well in all her years as Queen, but it may be time to relegate the concept of royalty to the history books.
We shed the yoke of a royal family years ago, and it has served us well. Even when those who have come along to pretend to American Royalty, we rid ourselves of such pretensions.
Plus, we are not good at bowing to anyone.