I am sure most of us have seen some glimpses of the celebrations and pageantry marking Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee. The Jubilee is marking the Queen’s 60 years on the British throne. For most British citizens, the Jubilee comes as a source of great national pride as did Prince William’s wedding last year. Though in recent times the Queen’s role as leader of the British Commonwealth has become more celebratory, she still holds some political say such as the power to appoint political officers. Due to the vast amount of colonies and territories the British Empire amassed during their heyday, millions around the world joined in the celebrations. I learned a lot about the British monarchy in my high school world history classes and how crucial the King or Queen was to the political, social and economic interests of the Commonwealth.
I, like many young people around the world, have grown indifferent to the purpose or role of the monarchy, especially in a time of great democratic change in all corners of the world. In this op-ed for CNN, the author makes an argument for the abolishment of the British throne. In my native country of Ghana, the monarchy is a big part of everyday life though they also have little political say. This NY Times article talks about how Ghanaians in the Bronx recently chose their own king in keeping with custom from the mother country. The article correctly notes that young Ghanaians like myself have little or no involvement in the affairs of the organization that chose the king as our upbringing in a democratic society, both home and abroad, have led to an indifferent attitude towards monarchies.
In an age of great political change towards democracy, do we still need monarchies? I will be interested in hearing your thoughts on this.