|MAKING THE CASE FOR THE MONARCHY
On Wednesday 14 November 2001, Alistair McConnachie led the opposition at St. Andrews University Debating Society against the motion "This House Would Abolish the Monarchy".
Putting the case for the abolition was Joan Burnie, Deputy Editor of The Daily Record, and a University student.
The Motion was successfully opposed.
The following are some of the notes made by Alistair McConnachie before the event. This article appeared in the December 2001 issue of Sovereignty.Free download of "The Jubilee Song", sung by Edward Tudor Pole here http://www.travelman.co.uk/jubileesong
AN IDEAL HEAD OF STATE
A Head of State who does not owe his or her position to either patronage or a vote can more properly represent all the people.
Consider that a President who has been elected, often by a minority of a minority of the electorate, cannot adequately speak for the people who did not vote for him or her.
It is even worse if the President has been appointed, because then he owes his position to a small clique.
So, the accident of birth is the best means of appointing a Head of State. Someone who has no party political axe to grind, or special favours to repay to a vested interest.
Someone whose allegiance is to the people. Not just allegiance to the people who voted for him or his political party, but allegiance to all the people of the country equally.
Far from being "incompatible" with democracy, a Monarchy can thereby enhance the government of the land.
A DISTINCT SYMBOL OF NATIONAL IDENTITY
When you see the Queen you not only see history since 1952, when she took the throne, but you see a person who provides a living sense of historical continuity with the past. Someone who embodies in her very being a history which extends back through time, back through the Victorian era, back into the Stuart era and beyond. You see the national history of all parts of our islands, together, going right back in time.
A living continuity between the past, the present and the future.
That's something that no politician can provide. When we look at Tony Blair, for example -- whatever you may think of him -- we see nothing meaningful on a national scale, pre-1997.
All politicians come and go, but Monarchy is forever.
With its traditions, its history, its ceremonial, and with its standing and respect throughout the world, the British Monarchy represents a unique national treasure, without which the United Kingdom would be sorely impoverished.
If you value national distinctiveness, you should be a Monarchist.
If you are anti-globalist you should be a Monarchist because Monarchies represent the different national traditions and distinctions among the nations.
The desire to secure, strengthen and promote your own distinct national icons, whether your Monarch, or your own unique national identity, should be your concern, whether you live here in St Andrews, or whether you live in St Petersburg, or whether you live in St Paulo.
As the global financial system rushes us all towards a world intended to eradicate all local and national distinctions, the Monarchy stands out as different, distinct and valuable.
Constitutionally, practically, spiritually and symbolically this nation would be impoverished without Monarchy.
If you want oppression and class injustice then look at the countries in South America, almost all of which are ... republics!
The Monarchy is a concept which can transcend class divisions in the sense that, in the eyes of the Monarch, all are equal before the Crown.
"It's a Costly Extravagance"
The pageantry, the ceremonial are all part and parcel of Monarchy - not intended to glorify Mrs Windsor, per se, but intended to elevate the national icon. So long as the Monarch remains a symbol of the nation, then no expense should be spared. A nation which values itself will treat its national icons with prestige and respect.
"Look at the Behaviour of the Royals"
"It Encourages People to Live in a Fantasy Land. They are a Diversion"
"Inherited Privilege has no Place in our Society"
If by "privilege" you mean the enjoyment of an advantage not bestowed upon others, then, you should judge the Monarch by how she uses that privilege.
"What does the Queen do?"
"The Royal Prerogative is Exploited by the PM"
"The Monarchy will Eventually be Abolished"
Even if the Monarchy were officially "abolished", it only takes one person to say, "You are my King" and the Monarchy lives.
THE REPUBLICAN CASE FALLS DOWN
Moreover, the republican case falls down on: