Now I’m not suggesting that our beloved and hated (depending on which side of the tea cup you fall) British monarchy accepts change at a pace that makes a three-toed sloth appear to have the agility of a cheetah, but after 300 years (a century for each sloth’s toe) the law of succession is rushing into the present to give equal birthrights to daughters.
This means that if the firstborn child of future king William and his bride, the Duchess of Cambridge Kate, is a girl, she will be first in line to become monarch. Prior to this change, succession skipped over any females to land at the feet of a younger brother.
Duchess Kate must be sighing with relief at this news, too, since past queens who failed to birth a son tended to lose their heads — literally.
Brits, of course, have had nearly 60 years to get used to the idea of a woman upon the throne with HRH Queen Elizabeth II, so this won’t come as too big of a shock, but another change may stir the pot a little more. At a meeting of Commonwealth leaders last week, it was also agreed that a future monarch would no longer be forbidden from marrying a Roman Catholic. If this sort of forward thinking carries on, in a few centuries they’ll be able to marry someone who isn’t white or even someone of the same sex. And here I thought it was a big deal when they stopped marrying their cousins.
The anti-monarchists are naturally still displeased as the changes only apply to one family. Basically, if you’re not born a Windsor, you can never rule. (Sounds like our senate; unless you’re glad-handing with the party in power, or went to school with the prime minister, you can’t become a senator).
Several campaign groups see this little hitch as a major problem and are calling for an elected head of state. Naturally, they will want Simon Cowell to lead the televised election process with the lowest-polling candidates being voted off each week after a nail-biting song-and-dance show.
Of course, if that were to happen, our next figurehead would end up being King Justin Bieber or Queen Susan Doyle.
Some change isn’t always for the best. M
Song Stuck in my head
“Broke” by Andrea June
I debated this one as Victoria’s Andrea June has delivered such an eclectic and interesting mix of songs on her indie EP Never Mind The Moon. I especially love the word play in “Mary Shelley” about the young woman who created Frankenstein; and the macabre “Bonne Nuit” with its catchy accordion, but “Broke” is the one I keep coming back to. Maybe it’s the lightness of my own wallet, or just the funky piano and June’s gorgeous voice.