I did not watch Oprah Winfrey’s sit-down with the two British fugitives the other night. I have not watched—except by accident—any clips from the conversation. I did not find it startling at all to discover that the British monarchy is shot through with racism. It is hilarious, however, to discover such a deep well of feeling on the American Right for the Family Windsor, and for an institution that we ran off these shores nearly three centuries before my family arrived here from another of the monarchy’s criminally mismanaged properties.
However, I yield my pride of place for contempt of this passel of crowned jugheads to Patrick Freyne of the Irish Times. I can’t top this.
Having a monarchy next door is a little like having a neighbour who’s really into clowns and has daubed their house with clown murals, displays clown dolls in each window and has an insatiable desire to hear about and discuss clown-related news stories. More specifically, for the Irish, it’s like having a neighbour who’s really into clowns and, also, your grandfather was murdered by a clown.
Beyond this, it’s the stuff of children’s stories. Having a queen as head of state is like having a pirate or a mermaid or Ewok as head of state. What’s the logic? Bees have queens, but the queen bee lays all of the eggs in the hive. The queen of the Britons has laid just four British eggs, and one of those is the sweatless creep Prince Andrew, so it’s hardly deserving of applause.
I’d get arrogant about the idea of an Ewok head of state, but I am a citizen of a country that was presided over for four years by an overstuffed Hutt, so I don’t have a lot of room to talk.
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