We’re currently in the grip of an intense royal fever, with Prince Harry and his new wife, Meghan Markle, on an Australian tour AND sharing the news that they’re expecting their first baby in spring, news that comes hot on the tail of the second royal wedding this year (of the less well known and less popular cousin, Eugenie).
But while Australians are thirstily drinking in every ounce of gossip the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have to throw our way, a recent independent poll has revealed that we are overwhelmingly in favour of abandoning the monarchy and becoming a republic.
Young people are leading the calls for change; with 58.6 per cent of 25-34 year olds polled agreeing that Australia should have an Australian head of state. While the reasons floated by the Australian Republican Movement are convincing, as a “young person” (I fall into the age group above), I want to make a case for remaining a part of the monarchy. Hear me out.
1. We’re in good (amazing, really) company.
As a Commonwealth nation, we’re like a cosy little family with the likes of Canada and New Zealand.
Do we really want to abandon Jacinda and Justin like this?
2. If we seek independence, we will be in… not good company.
I’m looking at you, USA.
3. The Queen as head of state is largely symbolic.
Whenever we discuss (fight to the death) about a Republic vs. Monarchy in our house, my husband, a staunch republican, likes to mention that the royal family can take our livestock at any time. While they technically probably can, I don’t lie in bed at night worrying that Prince Charles is going to take the crown and claim possession of my elderly Maltese x Shih-Tzu or my tabby cat. And I worry about a lot of crazy things when I’m lying in bed.
My point is, when is the last time Lilibet interfered in Aussie politics?
4. But maybe she should.
How stable is our government? Did you know that medical personnel no longer use the “who is the current and last Prime Minister?” question as a means of ascertaining whether you’ve suffered a brain injury BECAUSE NO ONE KNOWS. True story, I once failed this test following an accident because I forgot that Kevin Rudd became PM a second time for about five minutes after Julia Gillard and before Tony Abbott. I actually argued it with the doctor: “Fuck off! He did not.”
My kids aren’t ready to cross the road by themselves yet, and I just don’t think these guys are ready for the responsibility of being properly in charge just yet.
5. The Royal Family are so relatable.
After all, don’t we all have an aunt who did a thing and is no longer welcome at Christmas lunch?
They weren’t always relatable though. In fact, they used to be the standard that one should aspire to (or that was the idea). Now, they’re marrying commoners, divorcees, making unfortunate fancy dress choices, getting their toes sucked by random men who aren’t their husbands, and trying to sell their ex’s dirty secrets to News of the World, just like the rest of us.
If you think it’s just the young generation of royals who are (trying to be) more relatable, you’d be mistaken. The Queen herself (reportedly) drinks champagne like it’s going out of fashion, and wears Essie nail polish. Same.