I will not fault your clarity, Roy, but I will first eliminate two red herrings before attempting to bring focus and trust that you will accept my attempt to narrow our discourse.
First, let’s set aside the matter of wick-dipping. I believe that were we to uncover the data, the Royals would be no more engaged than we commoners. We disagree that the misbehaviour of the Royals is statistically exceptional. Your focus on this is not germane.
Second, let’s set aside the evocative headline of divine right. The English Civil War settled that matter for me. The Royalists held that kings derived their authority from God, and the Parliamentarians that their authority was derived from a contract with the people. From others came de rege et regis institutione, the justification of tyrannicide, the severance of the church and state, the confirmation that the people could call the king to account. Divine right died 400 years ago. Therefore, we disagree that “the fatal flaw … in the monarchy is the fundamentally anti-democratic nature of hereditary entitlement.”
Your “republican mind” probably embraces ‘all men are created equal, … with certain unalienable [sic] Rights … Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness’ which probably derives from the French who made the success of the American Revolution possible. In France, the three central features of the first version of the French Constitution (note that this was adopted in 1791 and was after the American Revolution and that there have been 15 versions of the French Constitution since.) were: France becomes a Constitutional Monarchy and the King comes under the supervision of the government, that nobility and clergy lose their exceptional privileges, and that the legislative authority resides in an elected assembly. The English have no written constitution so I cannot refer to that.
I do not believe that all men are created equal. I do believe that all have a right to life and liberty. I don’t believe that the nobility and the clergy have been stripped of their privileges. I do not accept that the fundamental legislative authority is within the halls of parliament. I do not accept that hereditary rights are suppressed in a republic.
The case has face validity. Look to the American example: All equal? Rights protected? Look to the Catholic church. Look to the power of money. Look to the hereditary power of the Rockefeller’s, Kennedy’s, Bush’s, Roosevelt’s, Trudeau’s. Look to the influence of lobbyists. Look further, the record is clear.
I absolutely believe that the monarchy continues at the pleasure of the people and that the Royal Family works diligently for the benefit of all in ways that no other institution can. I do not believe that the power of the people to remove an elected tyrant has teeth. Hitler, Putin, Trump.
For 30 years genealogy has been my hobby. The product satisfies for me a need to know, a need to understand, a need to have context, a need to define purpose. The process satisfies for me the need to be challenged in deciphering and proving and documenting. It provides me with an escape from the mundane and takes me to sacred from profane. Others build works of art and I admire them for that.
Our roots are probably in different soils given your recent arrival.
My son is the eighth generation to serve. Most were career soldiers – not all. We were on the Peninsula, we were at Waterloo, we held the line in 1812, we repulsed the Fenians, we went west with Middleton, we went to Europe twice in the 20th century. We came to this land 200 years ago. We served with the Royal Canadian Rifle Regiment before there was a Canada. We were born here before Confederation. We settled on land granted for service. Along the way we served also in peace in the far-flung reaches of the Empire – peaceful by our presence.
At the critical moment, you are correct, soldiers fight for friends. Next level up, the soldier’s family is the Regiment – embodied in the Colours. Next level up, soldiers defend the realm. Perhaps, then, our perspectives derive more from a personal history than from an objective examination.
I agree to your proposal for a Christmas cease-fire.
Publisher’s Note – a time tested way to “weigh in” is an ODN poll. Once it gets to a hundred it is gone. Let’s see what it will see. And I will enforce the cease-fire.