DISCUSSION: The Queen and Us

Today the Queen arrives in Canberra for her occasional visit with her royal sidekick The Duke of Edinburgh. Every few years she makes a visit with the last being in 2006 for the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

This week’s discussion is all about the royal family and whether they are still relevant to Australians. Everyone has an opinion and although this issue has been discussed a lot in the past this visit brings it to the forefront. Protesters have hinted at attending the opening of the new Royal Children’s hospital in Victoria but have been warned to stay away.

the queen

Firstly, protesting against a person who is supporting a good cause is a little off, and secondly the new hospital is something which should be celebrated and not tarnished. We want the news on Wednesday night to be about the new facility and not some disgruntled Aussies don’t we?

What about the rest of the royal family? William and Kate’s wedding received massive ratings and it certainly felt as if the whole world was caught up in the fanfare. Does liking the people mean we can’t be independent? Do we want to lose our Union Jack and our UK friends that go with it?

Me, well, I don’t like change when it comes to these things, I’m happy to keep the flag, the anthem and all things Fergie. But, now it’s your turn to have a say, how do you feel about the Queen’s visit and everything that it represents?

Tell us what you think for your chance to win a $25 Coles Myer voucher. The winner will  be contacted by email so make sure your address is current. Competition closes 25th October 2011 Midnight AEST. Check back next Wednesday for a new weekly discussion.

46 thoughts on “DISCUSSION: The Queen and Us

  1. I have never seen what the huge debate is all about to tell the truth. For as long as I can remember there’s been the big debate about the monarchy and I don’t see the need to change.
    It would mean a new flag and maybe a new national anthem but what else really needs to change. We are a pretty independently run country anyway I thought.

    And as for protesting the opening of a new hospital that’s just uncalled for.

  2. An ancestor of my mother’s clan was impacted dramatically after this person was falsely accused of treason.

    It took the House of Lords to restore some of what was lost – hundreds of years after the deed was done.

    Please refer to, http://www.rampantscotland.com/clans/blclandunbar.htm, accessed online 19th October, 2011.

    Unfortunately, my mother still believed in the monarchy. As for myself, I hope that this family becomes irrelevant in my lifetime.

  3. I think this will probably be her last visit, as shes not getting any younger. It doesnt directly affect me so I dont get bothered by it, I would like Australia to have their own national Anthem, if we get that I think everything else wont matter!!

  4. The royal family are no longer relevant to Australians nor Australia but by the same token, if we become a republic, very little would change politically. The royal family may give us our Queen but in reality, she is nothing more than a figurehead and she has no say in our political affairs. Australia has its own identity, despite being a monarchy. Although the royal family may no longer be relevant, they are still symbolic of our history and as they do not impact upon our freedom as a country, we ought to remain a monarchy.

  5. I admire the Queen for what she is and all that she has seen in her lifetime. The monarchy is a part of the old Australia – to me that is a memory to honour, our new Australia is way better and I am proud to be a part of the new Australia.

  6. Maybe the Monarchy is an outdated institution, but they sure sell a lot of newspapers and magazines! Where would the press be without them? I think the Queen does a better job than most members of her family, and if she can help bring about better international relationships between countries in a world torn by terrorism, then she isn’t doing too badly!

  7. It’s lovely that she’s coming here to see and be with her subjects, loyal or not. We’re a part of the monarchy, it’s our history, in our blood – like it or not Australia, we came from boat loads of English convicts and settlers, so why shy away from it. We are what we are, enjoy it – you don’t have to love the Royals, but you don’t have to hate them either. But on a positive note, if we did leave the monarchy and then ended up with a president….presidents that are disliked do get assassinated!! There’s always a good with every bad!!

  8. I love being part of the Monarchy. The Royal family brings a little bit of old world charm, values and niceness to a nation and society with slipping values. We should remain a part of the monarchy, embrace the union jack and show respect to our Queen. If you don’t like it – move to another country, where I’m sure you’ll start complaining about something else. People aren’t happy unless they are complaining, they need to direct their attitudes & energy to something more productive and positive.

  9. Why? We are independent enough now aren’t we? Australia wouldn’t be Australia without the British – I mean who sent us here in the first place. As a small token of our appreciation for being thrown into the opportunity of developing this great country of ours, well I’ll give her a wave as she passes by.

  10. I don’t think it’s anything worth making a fuss over! The monarchy is largely irrelevant to our day-to-day political world but we are a nation with British heritage – I think we should keep the Monarchy!

    Don’t fix what ain’t broke?

  11. Australians are far different from their British counterparts today. It is no longer relevant to have a British Monarch as the head of Australia. Remember 1975 when the Governor-General overturned a government elected by the Australian people? That should never be allowed to happen again. We can celebrate the Queen and our British history for sure, but it is time for Australia to move forward and become independent of all those old historic ties.

  12. It wouldn’t change things too much whether we had the royal family or not. Tradition though, is a great thing to have, to know where we came from and to keep our historical background.

  13. I don’t think the royal family impacts much on the average Australian’s life anyway – apart from giving us juicy magazine articles to read!

  14. Just like the hats she wears, I really think she is “old hat”. It’s a waste of money sending her out to Oz, we are clever enough to run our own country now.

  15. I believe no matter what side of the fence you sit on, she had done her apprenticeship and deserves respect. I have been a fan of Julia Gillard however I find it hard to swallow, if she thinks she is bigger than the monarchy and doesn’t need to follow royal protocol.

  16. I don’t have any interest in seeing the Queen myself but I know that a lot of people do. Everyone to their own and if it makes people happy and brings smiles to their faces why not ? Don’t get me started on the flag though – I am extemely proud of our flag – the flag I grew up with – and definitely don’t want it changed.

  17. I think the Royal family gives is an incredible connection to history that Australia would miss if it were severed. The Queen herself has done a good job under very difficult circumstances and in vastly changing times since she first commenced her reign in 1952. Tradition and history are important, why can’t we have it both ways???

  18. The Queen is a fantastic head of state for Great Britain but the royal families relevance to modern, multicultural Australia is tenuous in the extreme. We are fascinated by the royals because every little girl and boy wants to be a princess or prince at some time – but we all have to grow up – even as a country.

  19. The royal family keeps the dream alive of princesses and princes. It’s wonderful for children of the Commonwealth including Australia to have connections with the United Kingdom.Let’s continue supporting the monarchy.

  20. I love the Royal Family, it’s just like watching a soap on the television….however I do believe it’s time for a republic for Australia, we’re all grown up and they are pretty irrelevant to our way of life in Australia.
    It will be very expensive for our country though, it’s not just getting a new flag, it’s all of forms of government and the way parliment is run,courts, police, schools all those Queenie pictures that need taking down, our currency will need new images, not to mention all the Royal pubs that will need renaming!

  21. My entire life she has been our Queen and i think its sad that as time has gone by we seem to have lost respect. Just in general there is less respect in the world. So many people have a negative voice about the Queen and the Royal family. They complain about our Prime Minister. In public you will hear adults, teenagers and sometimes even children yell abuse at others and even use the F Word. When I was a child that would never have occured…NEVER!
    I was brought up to show people respect and this lady at the wonderful age of 85 years has been my Queen all of my life and when you think about it I dont think that very many of us would really have wanted her life. The reality of it is that she has dedicated her life to being our Queen and for that she deserves our respect.
    Shes human just like the rest of us but she was born into a job that must be an extremely hard one.
    I hope to one day see her Grandson become King.

  22. Queen Elizabeth is amazing I I think we are are better off staying as we are I grew up with the Queen I grew up singing ‘God Save the Queen’ at school & I have the utmost respect fort the Royal Family.

  23. I must admit that I don’t understand the hype surrounding the Royal Family, other than the Queen looking a lot like my Nana when she was still alive, I could easily forget they existed!

  24. Although I do think it is time for us Aussies to be our own people, we do have alot of historical ties to the Brits. First of all, if it wasnt for the brits we would not even be a country so we have the first explorers to thank for finding the Australian continent. And we have had the flag for so long (and we Aussies are SO BLOODY PROUD! of our flag) so why change now? If we became a republic, we kind of choose to ignore our historical past and our pure reason for being, don’t we? And what of our ties to the Brits? Wouldn’t we be severing them and causing undue animosity? We already have a world full of hatred and war- why start another?

    1. I agree with you wholeheartedly Britain the royal family the flag and anthem have made us as a country what we are today a strong proud country. Why change?

  25. I can remember as a young toddler seeing the Queen and her family in the Women’s Weekly. I remember once when we rushed into Sydney to get a glimpse of the Queen and Prince Phillip.
    You just have to watch the images of her visit at the moment to see so many people wanting to see her. Love or hate her, you have to respect her and she looks brillant for her age.
    Regards to the flag, that flag symbolises many memories especially to WWll and Vietnam veterans and to civilians like me. I know whenever that bugle is played and the flag is raised, I brim tears for the soldiers that lost their lives fighting for our country.

  26. Seriously if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Does the cost of changing our flag, currency and more really outweigh the benefits? And what are the benefits anyway. What’s wrong with injecting a little bit.of history, culture and class into our society via the royal family? I say we need a little bit more of this, defiantly not less!

  27. I for one am not a huge fan of royalty. I don’t go tingly at the thought of meeting them but at saying that I would not protest against them especially when supporting a good cause. I don’t think the royal family is as relevant to australia is now we are such a culturally diverse country. But I also would respect them the same as any other person and respect the work they do.

  28. I feel that we do not need to change from what we are now, as part of the monarchy. Sportspeople, especially those who qualify to get into the Commonwealth games and not the Olympic Games, have to remember that they will miss out on this opportunity if we scrap the monarchy and become a republic. I enjoy watching these events on television and if Australians were not competing, my viewing would be minimal.

  29. I think more people should follow the Queen’s example. Always diplomatic and loyal. She represents the best the Royal family could & should be. I would hate for us to become a Republic & lose her gracious presence. I like our flag as is. It is OURS & reflects our British association.

  30. Until reading this I didn’t even know she was coming to Aus… Shows how relevant the royals are to me.
    However I can’t see why we should change our flag, it’s what we know.

  31. I think The Queen is pretty good for her age and she really is very good with people. I sometimes wonder about Her Philip though! He has a gaff just about every year. She tolerates him though and has a lot of other responsibilities as I see it. It’s not a matter of should she represent Aussies, it’s the fact that there are really no beneficial reasons for not having her associated with us! She is a strong lady with quite a few family members who tend to make mistakes very publically. But, I think she should be admired and welcomed here because she does boost morale and we feel affiliated with England because of her influence over the years. Hope she comes back again!

  32. Who needs a monarchy in today’s world? Such an old fashioned institution, undemocratic and based on the believe that some people are better than others because there were born “royal”. Who believes in superiority of “royal” blood? They came in straight line from the warlords, bullies, thieves etc. There is nothing noble in their ancestry (I’m talking in general because I believe that there were few good humans there). So, wake up people and start to think for 21st century. We should invest in intellect, fighting injustice and poverty, not in some ancient ideas good for illiterate people from centuries ago

  33. Although I would never wish ill of anyone I strongly feel Royal Families and the like are a bit overated. Afterall it is merely an “accident of birth” if you are born into royalty, money or even poverty and no one should be either worshipped or crucified purely on this fact!
    Everyone, whether rich or poor, royal or not, should be given equal opportunity in this world and we should work to right all injustices instead of worrying about the plight of the royals!

  34. I don’t care about royals.
    The royals don’t pay my bills, pay my rates, put meals on the table for me at night or look after children. As long as my family are happy, healthy and loving life – then that’s all there is to it.

  35. Its great,for her to visit the best nation in the world.
    Letting the people she her close is a good thing.
    She is our Queen and we should respect and wave to her.

  36. I’m not sure that even Britain needs a Royal Family. It costs them a fortune, and there is little gain for the money. I think the members of the Royal Family are hard-working, charitable
    and, for the most part, likeable, but it’s not an institution I support. That having been said, I’m not sure that becoming a republic would be so simple. We’re not just talking anthems and flags – I suspect it would have a fairly wide-ranging effect on both politics and the law. If we’re going to make the change, it would be better to prepare for it slowly. A rushed job could get us all into hot water.

  37. Perhaps it was all that saluting the flag at primary school and singing God Save the Queen but I’m comfotable with the way things are now.
    Change comes when the time is right and at the moment there is not enough impetus to forge a change.

  38. Although I do believe we should be made a republic eventually at the moment the time is not right. I do not have anything against the Queen. She has always done the right thing for Aussies and has good things to say about Australia.

  39. Ilove the royal family and all it stands for ,warts and all!. They are part of Australia’s Heritage as are the flag and the anthem and helped uto shape us as the country we are now… Our first settlers built and carved out our heritage with values from the ” home country” Our diggers fought under the flag and were proud to do so they stood proud for the playing of the anthem. We cannot change what is the fabric of this magnificent country of ours by changing the flag or anthem only deny its heritage doing this! Instead move forward proudly as we already have full control over our land ,the royal family are just a wonderful dressing of pomp and ceremony to remind us of how far we have come… Love this fabulous country and love and admire the royal family and it’s trappings! Don’t let’s lose the magic and excitement ! The heart tugging of flag and anthem. Bring in the new and it could take decades to get all that feeling back!

  40. I don’t think The Queen has been relevant since the first convicts were tossed out of England over 200 years ago because why would the majority of those particular people back then wish to honour those that rejected them? That doesn’t mean the Australian people of today can’t sit back and relax and enjoy the idealism that The Queen and her Royal Family exude. Why not? When most of us nowadays didn’t even derive from that first rowdy mob anyhow?!

    Australians these days didn’t just come from England – so many more people come from the other nationalities from around the world. Take me, for instance – only half of me is derived from England, the other half from Holland. My husband is born here but 100% derived from Italy. Yet my children feel wholly Australian – and they are, but they also certainly enjoyed watching the excitement, extravaganza and somewhat surreal idealism (well, maybe not for The Queen!) of that wedding just not long gone.

  41. The debate of queen or republic often comes down to history and emotion out of the debate.
    The history: We’re British, this is our heritage. Sorry, but ask the original inhabitants of this land how good British rule was. Go back to World War I and consider the devastation of our soldiers at Gallipoli for no reason other than British interests. Go back to World War II – the British left Australia defenceless, refusing to help, refusing even to return our soldiers fighting in Europe. Only American intervention prevented Australia from being invaded by the Japanese. How about British nuclear tests in the South Australian desert?
    Conclusion: history has shown Britian, at best disregards Australia in times of our greatest need, and at worst…
    The emotion: The royal family makes us feel good. Well, so do puppies, posies and perfume. And they’re cheaper. Will and Kate’s marriage was terrific to watch. No doubt. Millions around the world watched it, including Americans, all without feeling the need to announce loyalty to the Crown. The royal family aren’t going to stop appearing on TV or in magazines if we declare independence.

    Another point: it should be remembered the monarchy doesn’t work for Australia, despite Elizabeth’s title as Queen of Australia. The royal family is wholly dedicated to serving British needs, British financial gains, undoubtedly at the expense of Australia. The royal family, despite that Australia pays for their trips here, do not work for us. Australia gets very little, if nothing, from association with the British Commonwealth. It is for this reason at least that Australia should declare itself a republic.

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