Thankfully the Queen isn’t dead. But what happens when she dies? I know that technically the eldest child inherits and becomes the new monarch of the UK, the Commonwealth and the Dominions. That being said, QE2 has been reigning since 1953, 65 years, nearly half of Canada’s time as a nation, and most of Canada’s time as an independent state. Under HRM Elizabeth II Canada repatriated its constitution and nearly broke up fixing the damn thing. Queen E has become synonymous with the Canadian Crown and I find it difficult to imagine a world without the old lady. I know others have the same feeling because I have heard the term “Canadian Republic” bandied about. That’s how iconic this woman has become; her death could signify the end of Canada’s Parliamentary Monarchy.
While I don’t believe any Canadian politicians have enough nerve to promote a republic, the same cannot be said about the Commonwealth. Last month the Telegraph reported how the Commonwealth has started to debate whether it was necessary for the monarch to be the head of the Commonwealth after the Queens death. Apparently, it is not written that Commonwealth leadership is hereditary which has left the door open to not have Charles lead it. Part of the sticking point is that there are fifty-three Commonwealth states, only sixteen of which have the British monarchy as their head of state.
Personally, I think the Commonwealth is underused, especially the Realms (those with the Monarch as head of state). In a post Brexit world, I think the UK will have three options on the table: go it alone hacking out mediocre trade deals, become a minor partner of the USA, or try and reinvigorate the Commonwealth as an economic/trade partnership. The latter might reek of colonialism, but maybe only if the monarch was the head of the Commonwealth.
A Welsh friend of mine is appalled about Canadians apathy towards the monarchy, he believes we should be a republic. I just don’t see the point of the change. I am probably a royalist, I like the monarchy as an institution. I think it adds a to the Canadian identity and connects us with our history. That being said, I understand his trepidation towards the Monarchy, the relationship of the Welsh, Scots, and Irish with the English Crown has not always benevolent. Where in Canada (if you aren’t from one of the First Nations) the crown is an ethereal concept that we have no relationship with.
In a world where Western Countries are weakening and disgarding their political institutions I find myself clinging to the longevity of the Crown.
Vive la Reine!