Monday, May 22, 2006

God Save the Queen!

From the Monarchist,

" seems only proper that we continue to reserve one day of every year to commemorate the institution that goes to the very core of our narrative and identity as a people. The story and spirit of Canada is every bit as much tied to the national significance of May the 24th, as it is to the significance of July the 1st and November the 11th, the three occasions which respectively evoke the memory of King, Country and those who died for it.

When I was growing up, I thought the Monarchy was a complete joke. A bunch of rich, spoiled elitists who travel with pomp and circumstance, yet lack any sort of meaningful role. And could you blame me? For most of the 1990's the Monarchy was cannon fodder for Tabloid magazines. Divorce after divorce, affairs, cheating, lying, and of course, the death of Princess Diana.

But as Beaverbrook pointed out, Canada's history stands lockstep with the British Monarchy. Will we now dishonour that past by cutting all ties today? Many wish to pull Canada in a direction that does not include her Majesty the Queen. They say we ought to establish and maintain our Canadian distinctiveness. But our current system of government is distinctively Canadian,

Once the "British" character of Canada is properly understood and accepted, then arguments on that score against the Monarchy are shown to be the unnatural thing they are. People will see how we got the Monarchy. They will understand that it was not imposed on an already existing country but brought here by the settlers who created Canada, just as all the other institutions we enjoy were. They will then appreciate that in standing on guard for the red-coated Mounties they are in fact cherishing a Canadian development and manifestation of their "Britishness". And it will be impossible for even the most stupid or malicious individual to say that the Queen and her family are foreigners, since all will see that not only do they come to us out of our own history but that they are also linked "forever" -- the word is Sir John A. Macdonald’s -- to the sense of purpose that underlies Canada.

So today, along with the kind folks at the Monarchist and Canadians from coast to coast to coast, I recognize and celebrate Victoria Day.

God Save the Queen.