Every night I switch on the news and shake my head. A little more forcefully each night, and it is with regret that I must admit as the late great Father Ted Crilly announced: “Those Protestants, up to no good as usual”. Bit mad all this isn’t it? Bridebook have estimated the cost to be £32m. That’s an awful lot of money, and while technically Prince Charles is paying for the bulk of this and not the taxpayer, it still means the taxpayer is essentially footing the bill for some rich people getting married. I also find it weird that people would actively rather watch a wedding they weren’t invited to on the telly, but that’s just me. We aren’t even getting a day off, what a waste of everyone’s time, eh?
There is almost something quite sad about this hero-worship of the Royals, further reinforced by the story of Karen Anvil. From the proceeds of a picture she took of Meghan Markle on Christmas Day, the single mother was finally able to afford the bedposts she needed. Before that, she merely had a mattress on the floor. How perverse is that? Meghan gets a free wedding while Karen had to sleep on the floor. I wonder how long it will take for people to wake up and see the inherent injustice of this situation, you have nothing to lose but your chains.
One of the most enjoyable things on the internet at the minute is the absolute oddballs camped out in Windsor, head to toe in Union Flag. Imagine doing this with your free time, spending days on end to see strangers who you’ve never met and never will meet drive past for 10 seconds. They might wave to you though, £82m of a Sovereign Grant well spent, right? Conservative councillor and council leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Simon Dudley said beggars could present the town in a “sadly unfavourable light” and requested that police remove them from the streets in the run-up to the wedding. Camp-out by all means… as long as it’s in a Union Jack onesie seems to be the message.
Thames Valley Police have been taking away the possessions of people sleeping rough near Windsor Castle until Monday in a bid to increase security. While this is “voluntary”, the alternative is that they will be seized anyway if they are unattended for any reason. Imagine being this dense, blaming the homeless for painting your town in an unfavourable light. Not the systematic inequality in your society which causes this schism. I find it strange how the most ardent Tories who espouse how poverty is effectively a choice that can be avoided by hard work can simultaneously accept the divine right of kings without question.
It’s often raised how vital the Royals are to the economy, but let’s not be as naive as to say that tourism would end with the monarchy. 82.6 million people visited France in 2016, compared to 35.8 million international visitors to the U.K. For the sake of preventing a gammon explosion, no I am not advocating turning Buckingham Palace into a Mosque, nor the regicide of the French Revolution. But surely, in a time of austerity it is time to have a serious conversation around the continuation of the Monarchy. But let’s not pretend London will drop below Kabul in the Lonely Planet guide if there was to be the establishment of a Republic.
Meghan and Harry do seem quite sound in fairness, Meghan has consistently spoke about female empowerment, while Harry has made important contributions in regards to Mental Health; but this is no reason to fund their opulence while 300,000 people are homeless and 14 million live in poverty. How is this acceptable? Stop paying attention to how lovely their dresses are, and in the words of my good friend Chuck D of Public Enemy,”Fight The Power”.