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Should Canada keep the Monarchy?

Should Canada keep the Monarchy?


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Zephyr

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"Canadian monarchy" as in the one we already have or as in something like Harper becomes king with his son next in line (and his brother after that)?

That sir is beside the point. The alternative is a Republic, by that I specifically mean a 'democratic' Republic. with elected officials and not a hint of Monarchy in another form. Regardless of these other positions that might be listed, that is the direction I am ultimately supporting. How Canada gets there will probably be in phases, if it gets there at all. The fact that there are people out there with transitional programmes is significant, polls are significant.

There is more than one mind on this as there are on many issues.
 

AndreaPalladio

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Ah. A democratic republic. Because the leaders of those are so well respected. Like George W. Bush or Moshe Katsav. Or thought of at all - there can be very few people who could pick the presidents of Italy, or Germany, or Portugal, or Austria, etc. out of a crowd.
 

scarberiankhatru

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You really should stop editing your posts retroactively, Zephyr.

Has my point changed? I believe I have indicated in a past post why that happens, but I could care less about your objection.

Yes, your points *do* change when you go back and insert comments that should come later, or remove things entirely.
 

AndreaPalladio

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.
Right or wrong in your predictions, the need of a Queen is not shared by all. And in the long run it is not something to fear but rather embrace. Those other Commonwealth countries are leaning in the republic direction already, and Canada has made it more difficult to do so than any of those former colonies. (In the UK itself, the Royal institution is getting its share of questioning everyday, but that will be left for another discussion, on another day.)


You forget that the UK experimented with republicanism for 12 years, found it distasteful, and abandoned the experiment. None of the Queen's realms has opted for a republican system since Sri Lanka in 1972, and before that Pakistan in 1956. One can hardly argue that republicanism benefited either state.
 

Zephyr

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You really should stop editing your posts retroactively, Zephyr.

And you really should stop lecturing me, or anyone else for that matter, on how to post. As per usual, you are motivated by another opportunity to sidetrack an already spirited discussion, to engage in your now familiar sidebar of personal attacks. But if that is what you want to do, go ahead, all you are accomplishing is to make yourself more transparent with each entry.

I prefer to discuss the topic at hand, and not get entrapped in your personal agenda.
 

Hydrogen

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You forget that the UK experimented with republicanism for 12 years, found it distasteful, and abandoned the experiment. None of the Queen's realms has opted for a republican system since Sri Lanka in 1972, and before that Pakistan in 1956. One can hardly argue that republicanism benefited either state.


But that is not to say that a former colony could not become a successful democratic republic either. The success or failure of such a government has nothing to do with the presence or absence of the monarchy.
 

Vexil

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One major problem with the Canadian monarchy is that it's not Canadian, it's British. While the office of Sovereign of Canada is legally distinct from that of Sovereign of the United Kingdom, we nevertheless rely on a British family to supply us with a Canadian head of state in the same person. That person has never been born here, doesn't and has never lived here, and occupies an office in which no Canadian has a say.

One solution would be to patriate the monarchy, and have a Canadian fill the role. That ought to satisfy monarchists, because a Canadian monarchy would be kept intact. It ought to satisfy patriots who dislike the monarchy because it's vested overseas, but who would like to avoid a republic.

Yet it wouldn't satisfy, would it? It seems most monarchists are actually lovers of the British monarchy, and prefer imposing that on Canada. And patriots would see patriation as as half-measure, not meeting the demands of a democracy. Besides, it would open debate about just who is fit to be king/queen of Canada.

Knowing this, monarchists cling to the status quo, avoid debate, and use "heritage" as a catch-phrase and anti-United States language to fan emotional fears. Republicans, or those who are so by default, argue abolition is the only solution.

If patriation is not realistic, then abolition must come. Preserving an overseas monarchy for Canada does the opposite of serving this country. It impinges our ability to celebrate our own people. Our laws, our lawsuits, our highways, our government copyrights, our national honors, our public lands--including cherished national parks--everything is promulgated in the name of the sovereign, or given over to him/her in name. We give homage to a non-resident sovereign on every coin of this land. No Canadian has ever been permitted to appear on the head of our own coins! New citizens, police, members of parliament and city council--all currently must swear allegiance to an overseas non-Canadian. And it doesn't end there. They are also made to swear allegiance to that person's heirs and successors, in order to gain the rights we the people desire to give them. Who, then, truly is sovereign?

"Only symbolic", you say? Symbols are crucial to a people's identity by the very fact they are symbols. They point to a greater reality than their mere physical or named properties. They have the power to ignite the imagination of a nation, to foster kinship and confidence, or to divide and deflect patriotic zeal overseas. In Canada, continued use of British symbols and names impedes the use of native ones. For every insignia that uses a crown, for every "royal" name, we witness a lost opportunity to develop our own symbols and names.

Yet, despite these colonial customs, some have been created: the Maple Leaf flag, the national anthem. Think how powerful those are, and how much more we might be if Canadian symbols and names replaced every British one. Would you deny that greater glory by insisting we continue paying homage to things and persons non-Canadian?

Just one result of our current situation: royal flags and those of the governor general and lieutenant governors take precedence over our Maple Leaf--some 30 flags in all. On the First of July, our paramount day, when the governor general visits Parliament Hill, our flag is taken down off the Peace Tower while the personal pennant of the GG goes up!

One of the greatest services a Canadian can do is to work for the ultimate independence of our nation. We have, for some time, possessed the maturity to take this last great step. With sincere thanks for the service of those in Britain, we can now give a Canadian the job. It need not be messy. The governor general's office could be made into that of a head of state. Even if selection of the GG remained the same as today, at least a Canadian would represent Canada to ourselves and the world. Perhaps even the office itself might be democratized.

The time to plan for change is now. With the advancing years of the current queen, Canada could inherit a new king whether it likes it or not. A new reign would make change more difficult, given this nation's propensity to avoid offending the sovereign (though frankly, being relieved of duties for Canada would probably come as a relief). We need to start work now to explore the choices that would lead to greater confidence, patriotism, and democracy for this nation.
 

Zephyr

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Just as this discussion was beginning to tumble, these last two posts by Hydrogen and Vexil have returned first balance and then elevation. I applaud you both.

I particularly want to express my thanks to Vexil, not just because it is your first post - in which you set an impressively high standard right of the gate - but because of the careful and thoughtful way in which you explored a rather emotional issue for many, without compromising your position. Obviously I agree with you, but you have stated it better than anyone I have read recently, and with an economy and force of reason that I admire.

Welcome aboard Vexil!
 

scarberiankhatru

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And you really should stop lecturing me, or anyone else for that matter, on how to post. As per usual, you are motivated by another opportunity to sidetrack an already spirited discussion, to engage in your now familiar sidebar of personal attacks. But if that is what you want to do, go ahead, all you are accomplishing is to make yourself more transparent with each entry.

I prefer to discuss the topic at hand, and not get entrapped in your personal agenda.

How can one discuss anything with you when you go back and change every post you make?
 

AndreaPalladio

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But that is not to say that a former colony could not become a successful democratic republic either. The success or failure of such a government has nothing to do with the presence or absence of the monarchy.
True, it is theoretically possible. Of course, the fact that is has never happened suggests that it is highly unlikely.
 

scarberiankhatru

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People that claim we "need" to get rid of the monarchy see it as a solution to some problem (such as 'we won't be independent until ---'). There is nothing remotely resembling a concensus that such a problem even exists. If we did get rid of the monarchy, we'd probably put a Brit like John A. McDonald on our coins, and keep the governor general's position of ceremonial cheerleader and PM stand-in but change the title to something befitting Stephen Harper's brother.
 

Zephyr

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Well ... what can you say when there is so much effort to return to where we were before. Maybe you just laugh and shake your head.

scarberiankhatru - in your last two posts, between attempts to drag down matters to a level that you are comfortable, and essentially repeating a prior entry, what is the point? Do you think you have addressed what is on the table this way? I would hope that after such an insightful post by Vexil, you would leave an equally thoughtful response, but who am I fooling, you did what I expected you to do - no more, no less.

(Oh, by the way, if you are having so much difficulty in responding to this post or any other post of mine, because you think they are changing so much that you cannot respond, you have always had the option to look to other posts, or just respond to the topic at hand. Far be it from me to expect you to put up with such horrific posts, even if they are mine. Spare yourself from the frustrations that will inevitably come in the future: namely, more of the same.)
 

scarberiankhatru

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Well ... what can you say when there is so much effort to return to where we were before. Maybe you just laugh and shake your head.

scarberiankhatru - in your last two posts, between attempts to drag down matters to a level that you comfortable, and essentially repeating a prior entry, what is the point? Do you think you have addressed what is on the table this way? I would hope that after such an insightful post by Vexil, you would leave an equally thoughtful response, but who am I fooling, you did what I expected you to do - no more, no less.

(Oh, by the way, if you are having so much difficulty in responding to this post or any other post of mine, because you think they are changing so much that you cannot respond, you have always had the option to look to other posts, or just respond to the topic at hand. Far be it from me to expect you to put up with such horrific posts, even if they are mine. Spare yourself from the frustrations that will inevitably come in the future: namely, more of the same.)

Another lecture from Prof. Zephyr!

Why shouldn't we return to a point in the discussion that hasn't been resolved: why is it so important that we get rid of the monarchy?

We could get rid of the monarchy and create alternate institutions that fill the void, but we don't need to. As long as there's no pressing need, some people won't want to. It's utterly absurd to claim that we are not fully independent because other countries have gotten rid of the monarchy and we haven't. Shouldn't a nation be above that kind of petty peer pressure? Would Canada be free of British influence if we erased the Queen from our coins? Of course not. Our "greater glory" will not be well-served by rewriting history like so many internet posts and pretending our colonial phase never happened.

I'll respectfully dismiss Vexil on the grounds that I do not accept the basic premise of his argument that the monarchy is a problem that needs fixing.
 

scarberiankhatru

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I think this whole debate should be reframed: instead of shooting first and asking questions later - or, saying let's get rid of the monarchy and only then finding justification - we should ask what does Canada need or what will improve our country. Removing the monarchy may very well be useful to some end...enough people may support change if, you know, there's an actual reason behind it.
 

Prometheus The Supremo

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what will become of the monarch butterflies?

president butterflies? maybe freedomflies? ;)
 

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