Written for Concrete Student Newspaper
This isn’t another republican rant (in the lower-case, I-prefer-my-tea-parties-indoors sense) against the monarchy. Sure, they’re freeloading toffs who enjoy a better life than the masses who pay for it out of their confusion between love of country and respect for bureaucrats who insist they have been divinely ordained to rule it, but then who isn’t?
Instead I wish to take this opportunity for debate provided by the rare occurrence of the royalty sticking their head over the parapet of Balmoral to remind us they’re still there, so blindly unaffected by the credit crunch they may well hold a royal wedding to celebrate their prosperity.
This isn’t a knock at Will and Kate (mazel tov, by the way). As someone married by their 21st birthday, I can respect young love and a commitment to making it last (as well as the caché it holds at student parties – try ‘beer me, wife’ on anyone other than your spouse and see how far that gets you.) My point is that it’s time we defined our relationship with the royal family. Either they’re the soap opera we pay a license fee for, the public service that provides a hospital visit to the 1,000,000th patient or the tourism magnet that pays for itself – and if so they can expect their funding to be frozen with the BBC’s, have their public sector jobs slashed, or at least be demanded to show receipts, expenses and spreadsheets to demonstrate how our investment is being returned.
It’s about time we established a contract with the Windsors. We’ll pretend we still believe in the deity they claim appointed them if they promise to pick up their side of the dowry, keep the Nazi uniforms and Parisian assassinations to a minimum and axe Edward from the show – he adds nothing.