The Royal Family
I understand why when looking superficially at the idea of having a Royal Family some might think the tradition is out-dated and hence irrelevant in today's society in which most countries don't 'need' a Queen. Of course our Royal Family is a tradition of the United Kingdom which means that some people automatically ask, 'Shouldn't history be kept in the past?' But I would argue that we are very lucky as a nation to have the opportunity to preserve a history for which we are renowned world-wide.
*The Queen's not-so-humble abode. Remember, she only actually lives in a little corner of it.*
Naturally, some believe that its simply 'not fair' that the Queen and her family just happened to have been lucky enough to have been born into their charmed existence and that they do not deserve what they get. Again, I'd have to say that this is a very materialistic way of looking at things. Yes, the Queen lives in Buckingham Palace in the center of London. Yes, her and her family get to travel across the globe on a regular basis. Yes, the Queen and her family are often seen wearing a variety of jewels and expensive designer garments. No, we don't see the Queen or her family riding the tube on their way to a nine-to-five job. No, the Queen doesn't have to buy her food shopping from Aldi because its been a particularly 'tight week'. No, the Royal Family don't have to be snapping photos and home movies of their special days, because the BBC does that for them.
*Kate Middleton wearing THAT Zara dress*
BUT its not all drinking champers on the Royal Throne. Imagine being born into a family in which you KNOW you'd be almost disowned if you didn't take over the family business. Imagine giving up Christmas Day with your family to make speeches to millions of people you don't even know. Imagine not being allowed to hold hands with your husband in public because it's not the 'done thing'. Imagine not being able to sit with your poorly grandpa in hospital but having to put on a brave face for the country. Imagine not being able to go anywhere without ten tonnes of security. Imagine your every move from what you say, wear and drink, being under constant scrutiny. Its surely not easy, and the freedom which we take for granted is sacrificed by the Royal Family in order to allow our country to preserve our heritage.
*Prince Harry leaving Mahiki after a particularly heavy night on the lash... We've all been there...*
To anyone who says that the Royal Family as it stands now is regressive and irrelevant in modern day, I'd totally disagree. Prince Phillip has stood behind and supported his wife, the Queen, since 1952 which is admirable considering the lack of rights for women at the time of her coronation. Prince William doesn't just roll in 'undeserved' wealth, but actually WORKS as an RAF Search and Rescue Pilot, just like any other man who does the same job, regardless of his ancestry. Princess Catherine shops in Zara. Prince Harry boozes in Mahiki. Heck, the whole family were grooving along to the likes of Will.I.Am and Jessie J at the Jubilee Concert last night! Meanwhile, each and every one of the core family gets actively involved in charity work, and more specifically, The Prince's Trust, which among other work assists underprivileged people nationwide to access opportunities which might not have been available to them otherwise in the economic recession. So I would argue that the Royal family is progressive, rather than regressive, extremely relevant to society and significantly more understanding and empathetic than the corrupt leaders with whom they are unjustly compared.
The Diamond Jubilee
Any occasion which unites the nation for a celebration is fine by me, and the Diamond Jubilee has done just that. So the Thames River Pageant cost a million squillion pounds, the roads have been closed for four days and BBC1 has been hijacked with Royalty-related coverage. But its been worth it, in my opinion, to be part of a historical event which will be spoken about for hundreds of years. And where the money is concerned, if you consider the amount of money the Queen has made for the country over the past 60 years of her reign, in tourism alone, I think it was the least we could do to honour the second-longest reigning monarch of our country. If you don't want to go to a party, or watch some of the countries biggest musical legends so far at the Jubilee concert, or even have a lie-in for your Bank Holiday day off work, then by all means don't. But don't for one second pretend its for any other reason than your general Grinch-ishness, love for attention-seeking controversy and lack of patriotic spirit.
I HAVE SPOKEN :P
So that's where I stand on the whole situation... Feel free to disagree in the comments, I know that last sentence was a bit naughty and I know that some people out there are very passionate about their dislike for the Royal Family and all things monarchy-related. However, I feel passionate about not letting Scrooges ruin my extended weekend with what I feel is un-necessary negativity.
Did you have a good Jubilee weekend? Are you angry about the festivities? Can you put forth a valid, mature and unoffensive argument for loving or hating the idea of having an active monarchy?
Love and snuggles