“Na na na na, hey hey, goodbye!” to the royals.

It is a catchy tune: Na na na, na, hey hey, goodbye.* It is a fitting goodbye to the young royals who dropped by on their way to honeymooning with the Americans.  Many thought they were here to shore up the stumbling British monarchy in Canada.  If that was why they were here, they failed.

They are obviously a very nice young couple.  The fact of his parentage aside, they deserved to be treated as any young couple wanting to see some of this wonderful country.  They were polite, gracious and willing, they could not be better ambassadors for the family trust back home in England.

But, no matter how the news media gushed over them (if you can countenance CTV’s Lloyd Robertson gushing), they failed.  They brought nothing with them but their well-scrubbed looks and smiles.  They took nothing away with them but fleeting memories of their whirlwind tour.

The gullible among us think this prince and his princess are part of a fairy tale wherein they live in some far away castle as the next king and queen.  They are not.  To the chagrin of royal watchers, the present Queen is not waiting for her eldest son to die before her.  Nor is it appropriate to assume that Charles will graciously abdicate in favour of his oldest son.  That might only happen over Camilla’s dead body.

It is to be regretted that some anti-monarchists in Quebec went out of their way to give the young couple the finger.  That was unnecessary and rude.  There is a solid body of opinion in Canada that we are long overdue to eliminate the monarchy from our country, coins and our $20 bills.  “The Queen, in the right of Canada” is antiquated and long out of style.  It is hardly pertinent to the majority of Canadians.

But you should not initiate an orderly change by assuming the monarchy does not exist.  How we replace the monarchy is the question that needs to be studied.  And it needs to be studied, openly and carefully by a constitutional conference in which all Canadians can have their say.

The people representing us at a constitutional conference need to be elected to that role.  Two or three people per federal electoral district might be logical.  They will need time.  It will not be cheap.  It is necessary.  When they are through deliberating, there will need to be a referendum so that all Canadians will have their say.  It is only at the completion of this that we will or will not rid ourselves of the encumbrance of England’s royals.

-30-

* The copyright for this song is confused because of the different arrangements and lyrics used by the various groups of artists who have recorded it.  We apologize for not being able to recognize the musicians and lyricists.

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

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