In a hilarious sign of desperation the Australian Republican Movement (or what’s left of it) have launched a new grand slogan – A Mate For Head of State.I kid you not, that’s what they’re calling it.
Since 1999, when they lost their republican referendum in what can only be described as a landslide, they’ve ummed and ahhed, come up with a horde of convoluted plans, lost a massive portion of their subscriber base and now, in 2006, it all boils down to a slogan; and a bad one at that.A mate for head of state? How about;
Already it hasn’t if Technorati (which indexes most blogs) is anything to go by. After as much publicity as their likely to get, including a nice big column in the Herald Sun, the amount of discussion around the concept amounts to four single entries. One is by Professor David Flint from Australians for Constitutional Monarchy, another from Pharoz (which included a link to the ARM’s Microsoft Paint created poster – a classy job to be sure), a New Zealand Republican site, and another at Obiter Dicta by Steve discussing the language used in a debate on the topic and not than the topic itself.The great new republican slogan has seen them feature in four blogs to date. There’s grass root support if I ever I saw it.
While I’m on the topic; the aforementioned column in the Herald Sun was written by Peter van Vliet, head of the Australian Republican Movement in Victoria. It’s a fairly yawnable piece on the etymology of the word ‘mate’ in Australia. And while he tried to use as many evocative terms as he could, such as British Monarchy (the Queen of Australia is a position separate from the British Monarchy Peter), and lied about the fact that becoming a republic wouldn’t mean leaving the Commonwealth (we’d have to get voted back in by the other members Peter), his argument seemingly boiled down to this;
One can hardly imagine walking up to the next in line for the crown, Prince Charles, and saying ``G'day mate, howya going?''
Well I saw a lady do just that when Prince Charles visited Melbourne. But Peter is right, ‘one could hardly imagine walking up to’ Prince Charles and saying “G’day mate”. I couldn’t even imagine an American doing that to their President, or a Briton doing that to Tony Blair. Not because none of these people can be our ‘mates’, our friends – but simply because I was brought up, like 99% of Australians, with manners. It’s out of respect and knowing better that we don’t approach Prince Charles and say “G’day mate”.
AND WHEREAS a defeat for monarchy and for the people in any one Realm, is a defeat for monarchy and for all our peoples in all our Realms, we do hereby mutually proclaim therefore that any further acts of disloyalty carried out against our peoples as represented by their Sovereign, or any further encroachment by the political elite on their residual powers of State, or any further attempts to undermine the legitimacy, independence and dignity of their office, shall no longer be tolerated with gradualist abandonment, but fought vigilantly and honourably with dutiful obligation, bound by our undying affection, loyal devotion and true allegiance to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, Her Heirs and Successors.
WHEREAS by the law and ancient usage of this Realm, the Kings and Queens thereof have taken a solemn oath upon the Evangelists at their respective coronations, to maintain the statutes, laws, and customs of the said Realm, and all the people and inhabitants thereof, in their spiritual and civil rights and properties: but forasmuch as the oath itself on such occasion administered, hath heretofore been framed in doubtful words and expressions, with relation to ancient laws and constitutions at this time unknown: to the end therefore that one uniform oath may be in all times to come taken by the Kings and Queens of this Realm, and to them respectively administered at the times of their and every of their coronation: may it please your Majesties that it may be enacted:
II. And be it enacted by the King's and Queen's most excellent majesties, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, That the oath herein mentioned, and hereafter expressed, shall and may be administered to their most excellent majesties King William and Queen Mary (whom God long preserve) at the time of their coronation, in the presence of all persons that shall be then and there present at the solemnizing thereof, by the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the Archbishop of York, or either of them, or any other bishop of this Realm, whom the King's majesty shall thereunto appoint, and who shall be hereby thereunto respectively authorized; which oath followeth, and shall be administered in this manner; that is to say,
III. [Inserting for Section III of the Act the 1689 oath taken by Her Majesty The Queen on Tuesday, 2 June 1953 amid great public rejoicing]
Archbishop: Madam, is your Majesty willing to take the Oath?
The Queen: I am willing.
Archbishop: Will you solemnly promise and swear to govern the Peoples of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Union of South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon, and of your Possessions and the other Territories to any of them belonging or pertaining, according to their respective laws and customs?
The Queen: I solemnly promise so to do.
Archbishop: Will you to your power cause Law and Justice, in Mercy, to be executed in all your judgements?
The Queen: I will.
Archbishop: Will you to the utmost of your power maintain the Laws of God and the true profession of the Gospel? Will you to the utmost of your power maintain in the United Kingdom the Protestant Reformed Religion established by law? Will you maintain and preserve inviolably the settlement of the Church of England, and the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government thereof, as by law established in England? And will you preserve unto the Bishops and Clergy of England, and to the Churches there committed to their charge, all such rights and privileges, as by law do or shall appertain to them or any of them?
The Queen: All this I promise to do.
Then the Queen arising out of her Chair, supported as before, the Sword of State being carried before her, shall go to the Altar, and make her solemn Oath in the sight of all the people to observe the premisses: laying her right hand upon the Holy Gospel in the great Bible (which was before carried in the procession and is now brought from the Altar by the Arch-bishop, and tendered to her as she kneels upon the steps), and saying these words:
The Queen: The things which I have here before promised, I will perform and keep. So help me God.
IV. And be it enacted, That the said oath shall be in like manner administered to every King and Queen, who shall succeed to the imperial crown of this Realm, at their respective coronations, by one of the archbishops or bishops of this Realm of England, for the time being, to be thereunto appointed by such King or Queen respectively, and in the presence of all persons that shall be attending, assisting, or otherwise present at such their respective coronations; any law, statute, or usage to the contrary notwithstanding.
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