Prince William and Princess Catherine are visiting these United States on behalf of the United Kingdom as I type these lines. There is little to do with me in all of this. This blog has of course been a place in which I and my readers have taken an interest the British Royal family and the lives and times of other royal families around the world. In fact there is a great deal to cover in such matters and most of it is not much covered in our news media. To get an idea of the importance of Spanish royalty one can take a long peek here. Feliipe VI was sworn in as King on June 19, 2014 and the event was duly marked . His proclamation was also duly celebrated and is visible in large part here. The role of the crowned heads of Europe does not become entirely clear to the average outside in just a few days, months or even years of observation. This all occurs more clearly to one who has watched events unfold over decades. This blog is not mostly about those people but mostly about my own life in much humbler circumstances most of the time.
The United States of America is in a phase in its history where it is determining what its image will be in the world and what its future direction will be. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are living symbols and embodiments of the future central and unified meaning and direction of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth which was once the British Empire. Cambridge is a university town where the royal couple who met at St. Andrew’s University have the title of their Ducal deisgnations.
But as we face the future as a nation we also face the challenge of integrating our hopes and plans for our country with the necessary commitment we all have to our own families, our own occupations and our own ideals. In these days Obama must doe the same — he must do both needful things at once. The visit is one of those aspects of this living out of change and continuity..
Certainly, the Harlem visit, the basketball game and the first family all brought home the qualities of the Afro-American world order in which we live. Certainly there was a need for something more than mere pain in race relations and their visit is a labor in that particular vineyard in deed. I am already burdened with many other things on my mind and I can’t say that the visit floods me with joy. Whatever one thinks of the final role Prince William is preparing to play he is preparing to play it after his grandmother and father are through with their bit and likely have died. The couple already has a certain aplomb and presence that is based in skill.
The questions about continuity are more present in our minds than usual in this lame duck month of Congress and two last years of the Obama Presidency. In my last post I mentioned how Advent celebrates themes that endure across time. That is part of the joy of Christianity. The British royals and other royals represent an in-between timeframe less than the eternal Kingship of Christ and more than the four years of a US Presidential term. We can remember this by seeing the current Queen of the UK and other realms with President Eisenhower.
So whatever America is doing and will be doing we will likely be dealing with royal heads of state. I hope that as far as these issues may seem from many daily lives we will take some time look at the future and see what we want it to look like for this country. Asking ourselves if we are where the Founders were hoping to get is part of the process although not the only or most important part.
My own political views are viewable in part here, here and here. I am well aware this is a proposal a long way from the mainstream as of yet. But that does not mean I do not take it seriously.
We British are a rum lot, among the first to denounce our royalty and yet regularly send them out across the world to remind nations that they continue to thrive. They are enabled because we first permit it, and the world subsequently permits it through the UN, recognising the variety of non-elected heads of state that fit alongside the, fairly or otherwise, elected premiers.
Whenever anti-royalist sentiments in the UK become shrill, the issue is immediately smacked down with proposals for the alternatives. Whether the world trusts us or not, we still don’t prefer the alternatives on offer.
A couple of minor points: though Catherine may be styled Princess William of Wales, she is not a Princess, given her ancestry. Also, the role Prince William fills will necessarily be dependent on the death of his father and grandmother. Unless the people have a hissy fit…
Your comment about the Duchess of Cambridge stays with you there. Princess Grace of Monaco, the Empress Theodosia (whose father was a bear tamer) and a thousand other royal women got their titles by the bed and the altar. She will be QUEEN CONSORT not Queen Regnant if she survives, but she will be Queen and is a Princess as is the Queen of Spain Queen today and not Letizia. You may do as you wish there but here she is a Princess by marriage. As for William — his great-grandfather on his father’s mother’s side succeeded to a living ex-king. On his father’s father’s side there are all sorts of abdications, treaties and elections in the Danish-Greek line in recent centuries. Therefore the idea that “the King is dead, Long live the King” is how it always works is like our Declaration’s blazing sentiments in that it is a matter of ideal formulations. There is an old tradition (stronger among my folk than most) but known around the world which causes one to remember the possibility of nonfatal removal from office not in a desire for turmoil but because when successions are discussed it is impolite to constantly refer to the demise of any but an openly agreed upon enemy who avows the same projection for the writer.
Nonetheless, here you are welcome to put forth your comments and I should perhaps be someone else. I am unfortunately me and this is how I write to explain myself. But my readers are likely to benefit in some cases from seeing you address these and similar issues. Nor am I trying to persuade you to change your mind. This blog has its own reason for being and is not a derivative royal watching site but I imagine that would be hard for you to credit and I do not ask you to do so.
I sense we are still getting used to each other’s style…
In case I miss the chance, I wish you every happiness and good fortune for Christmas and the New Year.
The same to you. I am glad that you are interested in taking the time to read, write and understand. The holidays are a great time to seek understanding. If I am free and in decent condition I will extend more seasonal greetings soon.
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