Friday, 6 November 2009

Royal obsession

On this anniversary of the defeat of the Republic referendum we are all reflecting a bit about monarchy.
A couple of articles in the press this week reminded me of this bizarre obsession we all seem to have worldwide with the idea that leadership and the right to rule is some how an inherited characteristic.
Touring Australia is a "Crown Prince" of the former Indian State of Rajpipia (here). How can you be a "Crown Prince" of a former state. I mean there is nothing to rule.
However the good prince, an openly gay man, is touring Australia and Asia to campaign against laws which criminalise homosexuality. His argument being that this aggravates the AIDS problem, I mean you are unlikely to admit to being gay if you are going to be executed!!!
I suppose the 'royal' status is a hook to grab attention. And why is it any different from a joke I might tell at the beginning of a sermon?
Likewise the Institute of African Royalty is meeting this week( see Associated Press's report here). At least these people may have some claim to represent some regional and sectional interests, though it is yet to be demonstrated that birthright is necessarily the best determinant of who might or might not represent the interests of a group of people.
There is a good photo of some leaders in traditional dress here....look at the footwear!

Meanwhile the ever smug Mr Abbott reminds us on RN this a.m. that we have 'evolved' our conception of monarchy by not focussing on the Windsors any more but rather on who the GG is.
Well, isn't that precisely what the Republican Movement wanted?

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