The British royal family is a very longstanding institution that’s a key part of the country’s national identity. The current Queen, Elizabeth II, is still going strong at 93 years old and is the longest-reigning British monarch, having been on the throne since 2 June 1953. She’s had consistently high approval ratings throughout her reign. For example, 90% of the British public had favourable opinions of her in 2012, the year of her Diamond Jubilee. Even though the Queen is much appreciated, the royal family as a whole isn’t free from controversy and there are some who think the institution is outdated and unnecessary in today’s world. Here are some key arguments for and against the royal family.
Arguments For The Royal Family
One of the key purposes of the royal family is to unite not only people in the UK through shared history and values, but also residents of the Commonwealth of Nations. There are currently 53 member states of the Commonwealth and together they have a population of around 2.4 million. Various members of the royal family, especially the Queen, do an excellent job of representing Great Britain on the world stage. They collectively carry out more than 2,000 engagements a year, which include things like receptions, visits to the Armed Forces, national celebrations and garden parties. Many are also heavily involved with numerous charitable causes, often setting up their own charities and helping to make a positive difference in people’s lives not just in the UK, but also in many other countries around the world. The royal family helps to generate a lot interest in the UK and in turn, a whole lot of tourism that greatly benefits the country’s economy. Another benefit is the fact that the Queen is largely an apoliticacal head of state who leads by example, rather than by telling people how to live or what to do.
Arguments Against The Royal Family
Even though the royal family is generally well regarded, there are some negative opinions on the institution. Some dislike the fact that the ruling class is restricted to one family and that it’s blood lines that determine who is the ruler, not a voting system of any kind. Despite estimations that the family costs each taxpyer £1 per year, the fact remains that the family’s being largely supported by the public. Sure, they do a lot of good and generate a lot of income, but even so, some aren’t happy having to keep funding a family that’s incredibly wealthy. Some criticise the family for representing wealth and luxury – recent weddings have been a prime example of the family displaying its money for the world to see – in times when many people don’t have much money at all, or not even enough to get by.
The royal family is here to stay. It’s pretty certain that over the next few generations, the royal family will continue to serve the UK and lead as best as they can. Even though the general consensus on the family is somewhat favourable, attitudes towards them may well change. The Queen has long done an excellent job of maintaining the family’s reputation, but at some point in the next few years, she will unfortunately pass her role down to Prince Charles, who will no doubt attempt to ensure the family’s well appreciated by the public. What’s clear is that if the royal family was to be abolished for whatever reason, their absence would be a huge loss to the UK in many ways.