(inspired by the Lovely Jacinthe)
Cue: Rule Britannia
1. Prince Charles was an environmentalist long before it was popular, fashionable, or socially acceptable. He took a lot of flak in the media, but held his ground and is now regarded as a brilliant cutting edge thinker who was ahead of his time. (note to self: do what I think is right, not what is popular.)
2. Elizabeth, The Queen Mother was a tremendous inspiration to my grandmother's generation during the Second Great War. She became an icon for her grace under pressure during the bombing of London, and her loyalty and love and sense of duty towards the English people was exemplary - (see anecdotal historical accounts of her refusal to leave England during wartime).
3. Her Majesty, Elizabeth II has done a great job for many years, and wears great hats. She deserves her own Academy Award just for being the Queen. (note to self: wear more hats. I love hats.)
4. Masons. Most of the male Royals (especially those of a certain age) are Masons. Funky hoo-ha. (Read about it in Vanity Fair. Picture of one of the Queen's Uncles in full ceremonial regalia as the head of the Order.) The late Duke of Windsor was quoted thus: "Said he of Masonry: " The world today does require spiritual and moral regeneration. I have no doubt, after many years as a member of our Order, that Freemasonry can play a most important part in this vital need." (Source: The Learning Kingdom; Livingston Masonic Library) To be a Mason, ask a guy who used to be a King but is still a Mason. You can't abdicate being a Mason.
5. There be Druids in Windsor Castle. At least two of them - one of whom used to hang out with another Druid (Winston Churchill) - Queen Elizabeth II and the Prince of Wales both accepted posts as honorary Druids in the Wales Gorsedd. (Sophie Moore, The Gnosis Interview).
6. A sense of history, pageantry, pomp and circumstance. As a person who loves ritual (religious and otherwise), I like the idea of having an element of governing culture (notice that I did not say government) that has a tie to the past - Royals became royal originally through battle, strength, and cunning - and earned their right to govern. The question of "how" they govern is a separate discussion. In a country where a so-called majority is determined from within the ballots cast by only 30% of the citizens who can get off their couches to vote and determine who gets elected to goven our country, I'd rather take my chances on the a winner determined by skills than by how many votes they can buy or how many special interest groups they can placate. (note to self: get more radically political)
7. They boost the tourist industry wherever they go. Worth the price of admission every time. Guaranteed to put on a show. Messrs. Liz and Chuck. assure the public their production will be second to none. And of course Henry The Horse dances the waltz! (thank you John Lennon)
8. Princess Michael of Kent is a great role model. They should have let Princess Michael tutor Diana instead sending her for protocol lessons with the Queen Mum. Prestige before Protocol. Still annoyed that I missed her book signing when she was here in Winnipeg.
9. The Princess Royal (Princess Anne) does a lot of good in the world, and isn't afraid to get her hands dirty. She is actively involved in over 200 charities and organizations. And in Scotland, she outranks her older brother! She should have been born first.
10. They made room for Camilla. A few decades too late - but she's finally where she should have been 30 years ago. Comfortable as two old shoes together, they are, Chuck and Cammi. Now they should retire to Scotland and go flyfishing or grouse hunting or whatever retired noblefolk do in their golden years - and let Prince BillyBadBoy get on with the business of ruling Cool Britannia.
11. Corgis - the ultimate secret weapon. Stealth doggies. Welsh Dwarf Dogs - made for herding dragons. Big Red Dragons. HRM Lizzie keeps 4 at all times. One for each of the Four Directions of the Druid Aerts? Could it be? inquiring minds want to know...
12. Members of the Royal Family (including those in the direct line of succession) serve in active duty in Her Majesties Armed Forces in combat zones like The Falklands & Afghanistan - and not just because they like getting medals pinned on their chests by their Mum, or Grannie, or Auntie. I challenge all members of the Canadian and US governments to send THEIR sons and daughters into active combat. (cue up the Creedence Clearwater Revival... Fortunate Son...)
13. I saw the Queen be visibly moved and very kind in her response to a very old woman on the street corner (long story) and that momentary act of graciousness has stayed in my memory as a true example of nobility. Then she smiled at me.
God Save the Queen.
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