Since I’m technically a descendant of Brits, I’ve had more than a passing interest in all things that have their roots there. What we call soccer, bangers and mash (heck, that’s my nickname), and everything that has aired on the BBC or ITV in the last few years, especially in daytime. And yes, the royal family.
But my vision of it was, until last fall, always laser-focused on the matriarch whose reign spanned my entire lifetime, as well as the majority of those who were living on this planet. When Queen Elizabeth II finally passed at the age of 96 after a record-breaking 70 years of service, it was truly the end of an era. There is no THE CROWN without the beloved, bold, determined woman who wore it so proudly and withstood the decades of turmoil around her, not to mention family dynamics that arguably rival those we’ve seen with the Kardashians.
A sister who dared to be involved with a divorced man? A son who had ties to Jeffrey Epstein, who once was married to a voluptuous redhead who loved to suck toes? A grandson who married a commoner–a biracial American ACTRESS, begods–and was so traumatized by his childhood he felt compelled to write a tell-all book about it? And, of course, a daughter-in-law she once despised but, upon her tragic death, a legacy she needed to confront in order to save the legacy and respect of she and the other survivors after her candor, honesty and progressiveness captured the nation and ultimately reshaped a generation’s attitude toward them? Elizabeth Windsor endured it all.
But today, after a looong winter and extensive, expensive preparatation, her oldest son, King Charles III, finally was officially coronated, along with his second wife, dubbed Queen Camilla, a woman who Diana Spencer once dubbed “the rottweiler”, At 73, he is the oldest person to begin his rule in the history of the monarchy. And let’s tactfully say he isn’t quite as striking nor regal as was his mum. It was pomp and circumstance with centuries-old traditions being reenacted to a worldwide audience, many, like me, choosing not to sleep the night in order to watch. The other times I did this for the family were on occasions where the crown was only a guest star–Charles and Diana’s Royal Wedding, the coverage of Diana’s death at the hands of French paparazzi, and, last summer, both the Queen’s jubilant celebration and, later, her funeral.
There were truly lovely moments, such as the appearance of two of Charles’ grandchildren. The approach to the abbey. And yes, the first images of the new King and Queen. But when I read the NEW YORK TIMES’ Melissa Kirsch this morning, I realized that not only am I truly not a Brit, I’m in a minority of people who cared As she wrote:
|In a recent poll of 3,070 adults in Britain, 64 percent of respondents said they had little to no interest in today’s coronation. The ceremony has been modified to be more inclusive, but still “the hoary rituals of the coronation are a reminder of how — in a secular, multiethnic, digital-age society — the crown is fundamentally an anachronism,” wrote The Times’s London bureau chief, Mark Landler.|
|An over-the-top coronation for a new king does make for an incongruous viewing experience while Commonwealth nations call for Britain to redress its colonialist legacy and the country reckons with a cost-of-living crisis. The dissonance is for the best, I think. It’s possible to be fascinated by the pageantry while remaining skeptical of it, to gawk at the fairy-tale elements of the coronation while still questioning the system that supports them.
Several anti-monarchy protesters were arrested in central London ahead of the coronation of King Charles III on Saturday, their group has said, as the Metropolitan Police force faces scrutiny for its approach toward demonstrators at the historic event.
Thousands gathered in central London on Saturday to celebrate the once-in-a-generation event. But it also drew demonstrators, with protesters wearing yellow T-shirts booing and shouting “Not My King” throughout the morning.
Republic, Britain’s largest anti-monarchy group, told CNN that police – without providing any reason – arrested organizers of the anti-monarchy protest.
They stood up despite the immediate possibility of incarceration, as ABC News had reported yesterday:
Republic shared a link on its website to the letter in question, which was dated April 27. In the letter, the U.K. Home Office’s Police Powers Unit details new criminal offenses that will be rushed into law to prevent disruption.
“Our tolerance for any disruption, whether through protest or otherwise, will be low,” the police force said in a statement on Wednesday. “We will deal robustly with anyone intent on undermining this celebration.”
The changes are part of the so-called Public Order Bill, which came into effect on Wednesday after passing through U.K. Parliament and receiving royal assent from Charles. Under the new law, protesters who interfere with “key national infrastructure,” such as blocking roads and railways, could face 12 months behind bars, an unlimited fine or both; anyone “locking on” or physically attaching themselves to other people, objects or buildings to cause “serious disruption” could face 6 months behind bars, an unlimited fine or both; and police will be empowered to stop and search protesters suspected of having intent to commit an offense.
Hmmm. A government that seems more intent on cracking down on public protest than open discussion about desired changes? Does that sound–hmmm–a bit familiar?
So I suppose there’s a chance that at some point there’s a possibility the new King might entertain someone who somehow could become his own version of it here again. Only I kind of doubt he’s going to as relative reverent as he was to the Queen, especially when anyone close to him shares this image:
Perhaps our interest in all of this comes from the same place where our interest in reality television is. A man-child who never left his mother’s house, apparently likes to show off his legs, and is as loved and respected as he is because of people he fathered with a now-canonized martyr whose absence on this day was felt all the more. After all, his dalliances with said Rottweiler are still seen as the reason she was in that limo in Paris while she was trying to maintain a private life. Had things worked out differently, we might have gotten a QILF this morning.
There are truly grave problems in England these days, not unlike here. This morning’s revelry was a quick aside, and yet, a reminder of exactly how preposterous a monarchy under such disliked people seem to so many he actually rules. Many of the Republic protestors are advocating that an elected official be designated as monarch rather than have it be inherited by bloodlines.
Given how much I see this as reality television, I’ll cast my vote. And because I have something in common with my choice, please don’t castigate me too much for it. Did you know that the Kardashians are actually descendants of Scottish ancestors? If you don’t believe me, believe BUSTLE’s Stephanie Downs:
(A)ccording to the Daily Record, journalist Craig Williams discovered that Kim Kardashian and her famous siblings are related to Scottish outlaw and folk hero Robert Roy MacGregor through their mom, Kris Jenner. Through her distant relation to MacGregor, the Keeping Up With the Kardashians fam is related to Prince Gregor, the younger brother of Kenneth MacAlpin, who is regarded as the first king of the Scots.
Now there’s a QILF!!!
Until next time…