The annual figures of publicÂ ‘spending’ on the Royal Household have just been published, with the usual justifications attached.Â You’ll always be able to find more people willing to defend the monarchy than those who will shout it down. There are enough apologists for the monarchy already,Â but those numbers areÂ set to swell with the immanent arrival of the latest royal offspring. You’ll have to excuse meÂ at not being overjoyed for the happy couple.
As you can probably tell, I’m no royalist. The concept of royalty stands for something incredibly vulgar in my eyes; the premise that you are born a better person than someone else. That Royal blood is somehow different and superior to anyone else’s. It also stands at the head ofÂ the Church Of EnglandÂ in the UK, keeping that particular institutionÂ ticking over and giving it far more traction than it deserves when it comes to topics such as morality, gay marriage and women’s rights.
The main argument that isÂ continually brought up when defending the British version of aÂ monarchy is that “it brings in so much money to the country through tourism.”Â If this is the case, and I’m not convinced a sitting monarch is first on the list when considering Britain (sorry, London) as a vacation destination, it makes little difference whether you have a sitting monarch or a history of monarchy to play off. You can still keep Buckingham Palace (pronounced Buck-ing-um) standing and open it all year round to tourists. You can keep the history books open. You can still make a play on royalty when creating those awful adverts showing Britain as this wonderful place toÂ visit on holiday (pictures of London and Scotland, never anywhere else). You just don’t need to give an already substantially wealthy family (their estate is worth over $11bn) upwards of $50m a year, equating to a wage (or more accurately the biggest benefit check written to a single British family). Nobody calls the Windsors ‘scroungers’ as they spend over $1m on William and Kate’s new family home improvements, for example. But the guy who claims Job Seeker’s Allowance at $100 a week is the scum of the Earth. Britain in a nutshell.
I want no part in supporting the concept of royalty. This is nothing against the presiding family. I don’t know them personally. I don’t care that Charles married Camilla after a divorce and can still beÂ king. In fact, I’m more happy that he’s now with someone he wants to be with. But this is the kind of trivial Royal matter that is discussedÂ all-too-often. Not the “what the hell are they still doing here” subject.
No matter how much negativity the Royal Family receives, it is protected by the class system, and large pockets of the media. It won’t be allowed to die out. It won’t be allowed to fade away. There is zero chance of a public vote to rid ourselves of the concept. Listen to the British (more accurately, English) national anthem, God Save The Queen. You can’t get much more outdated than that, but still we carry on regardless. The Royal baby is going to be a cringe-worthy watch, as the wall-to-wall coverage re-emphasizes the “importance” to Britain the family has. Well I’m sorry, but it just doesn’t. Not any more. The history of royalty on the island does, but an expensive sitting family does not.