This weekend will mark Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom’s Diamond Jubilee — the 60th year of her reign.However, in the 21st century, isn’t the monarchy little more than an anachronism? A ceremonial head of state, decided by blood?
Theoretically the practice seems in-egalitarian, and practically, there’s a good argument that its a huge waste of funding. One anti-monarchy group says that the Royals cost the British taxpayer more than £200 million ($320 million), according to AP reports. Even official estimates say that she costs £40 million a year.
Despite that, in a poll in 2006, only 18 per cent of Brits polled favoured a Republic. A poll from this year found that 69% of those polled thought the UK would be worse off without the monarchy.
What’s stopping the UK from ditching the royals? They chopped off one’s head and lived as a republic for 11 years under Oliver Cromwell, remember.
The Queen has perfected the art of saying enough, but never saying anything that might offend.
Matthew Norman of the Telegraph sums it up:
None of us has a clue what the Queen thinks, and this, when you think about it, is what makes her remarkable, and best explains her success. After 60 years as sovereign, her people have barely the vaguest idea of what goes on in her head. Being the planet's most relentlessly public figure and among its most impenetrably private, at once uniquely familiar and entirely unknowable, is a paradox that never loses its power to intrigue.
The Queen came of age during World War II, and became Queen Regent in 1951. She served as a reminder of the UK's strength during that war.
Prince Philip, on the other hand, is the walking embodiment of old style values and resistance to political correctness.
The Diamond Jubilee itself is expected to send £10 billion ($15 billion) to the British economy via tourism.
Most in the UK have Monday and Tuesday off work to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
It's a big factor! During last year's Royal Wedding, a combination of Easter Weekend (usually a holiday), the Royal Wedding (a special one off) and May the 1st (usually a holiday) resulted in three long weekends in a row.
'I don't even know how to go back to normal life,' a friend in London said at the time.
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