MEANWHILE FAR NORTH OF THE RIVER: WELCOME DAMES AND KNIGHTS

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By Roger Plastow 

 

It’s time for all Northsiders, Far Northsiders and even Southsiders, to stand up and be counted.

Let’s make sure everyone knows we fully support soon-to-be-Sir Tony Abbott’s decision to bring back knighthoods. Anyone who disagrees is not a nice person (I would have used the term ‘traitor’ but I’m scared of the vilification laws currently being debated).

Yes, all Victorians and all Queenslanders have to welcome the reintroduction of titles like Sir and Dame. Why, you ask? Because we are joined at the hip with the Mother Country and must never forget our proud traditions and heritage.

Victoria, like Queensland, was named after Queen Victoria. There, that’s reason enough. Just think, if it wasn’t for our beloved Queen Vickie you might now be living in Southern New South Wales. How would you feel about that?

But I know how Far Northsiders would feel. On 6 June 1859 the good Queen signed a Letters Patent separating the colony (now Queensland) from New South Wales. We are still so pleased about the divorce we even throw a big party on June 6 each year called Queensland Day.

Some of you may be philosophically opposed to the idea but please put the good of the nation before your own personal, petty ideas. After all, Dame Quentin Bryce, our beloved former Governor-General and devout republican, put aside all her often espoused and dearly held beliefs and accepted the Royal Honour.

Yes, I know Dame Quentin has strong feelings about Australia becoming a republic and a driving ambition to tell the Queen to shove the British Empire

Yes, I know Dame Quentin has strong feelings about Australia becoming a republic and a driving ambition to tell the Queen to shove the British Empire, the Commonwealth of Nations and the whole monarchy thing where the sun don’t shine. And yes, I know Dame Quentin and son-in-law Bill Shorten yearn for the day the sun sets on the Empire and a new republic of Australia is born.

But if someone like our beloved Queensland housewife Mrs Bryce can set aside her personal feelings and accept our Prime Minister’s decision (and a title) then surely we all can. And let us remember that she accepted the title with her son-in-law’s  backing so there is a universal embrace of everything royal and noble and titled.

However, some people, who are kicking up a frightful noise about soon-to-be-Sir Tony’s decision, claim the titles of Sir and Dame are meaningless. Why are they getting their knickers in a knot and other things in a tangle just because someone overseas hands out four meaningless titles a year?

My only beef with soon-to-be-Sir Tony’s decision is that he has severely restricted the number of available titles. All Victorians, even some of those south of the river, deserve titles. And all Queenslanders deserve titles. If it wasn’t for our beloved Queen Victoria who’d know what our states would have been called? Victoria could have been named South-East Australia But Not As South As Tasmania. And Queensland could have been North New South Wales, or New Not-So-Far-South Wales, or The Bit Above New South Wales, or even East Northern Territory.

So really, Victorians and Queenslanders have a lot to thank Queen Victoria for, even if she did marry her first cousin, Prince Albert. But she did inherit the throne when she was only 18. How many 18-year olds could carry out the duties of Queen these days? Some are flat out doing up their shoelaces so they wouldn’t have a clue about feeding Pal to royal corgis or delivering Christmas Day messages.

And those repugnant Republicans want to know what she does to fill in time after morning tea. Everyone knows if she’s not out defending the faith she’s probably at the races.

Just to show I know how to Google, might I add that Queen Elizabeth II is the constitutional monarch of 16 sovereign states, known as the Commonwealth realms, and their territories and dependencies; the head of the 53-member Commonwealth of Nations; the Supreme Governor of the Church of England; and, in some parts of her realm, carries the additional title of Defender of the Faith.

And those repugnant Republicans want to know what she does to fill in time after morning tea. Everyone knows if she’s not out defending the faith she’s probably at the races.

Oh and by the way, if my calculations are correct, our beloved current Queen only has to sit on the throne for another 17 months and she will be the longest serving British monarch and the longest of any female monarch in history. Now if that’s not enough to convince you to support soon-to-be-Sir Tony’s decision, and to nominate yourself for a title, nothing will.

I vaguely remember someone saying, “God save the Queen, because nothing will save the Governor-General”. Didn’t they get that wrong? Dame Quentin got everything she wanted by backing two horses – and they both won.

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