Great Barrier Reef

Musing on the Monarchy

A small public garden at Healesville in Victoria has a plaque stating that the garden was planted in 1953 in commemoration of the coronation of Queen Victoria II. She was crowned in 1952, almost 65 years ago. For such a long time has she reigned; few regents could boast 65 years in office. And it is over us, Australians, that she reigns; quietly, discretely, non-politically - in the background. But will it always be so? Prince Charles has shown a disposition to make comments on political matters. Will he continue the monarchy in the same silent manner? Surely his time must come soon – no one lives forever. What will happen then? What could happen then?

To Australians it seems strange to have a foreign monarch – it is seen as a quirk of history – an irrelevance. But it was due to the delegated power of the Crown that a sitting Prime Minister was removed from office. And the laws passed by Australian parliaments are not binding until signed by our Monarch, or in her place, one of her representives as Governor or Governor General. When we go walking in state forests, we are walking on Crown land – the term appears through all our land titles and many public places – think of it, Crown land, the Queen’s land, perhaps soon the King’s land?

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