Queen Elizabeth life’s life span was of 96 years and she was monarch for 70 years. While the length of her reign contributed to the timeless aspect of monarchy, she is also discredited with being witness to declining United Kingdom. A report by Kulsum Mustafa
Longevity comes with a price tag. While it widens your horizon and allows you to be a part of decades, on the flipside it also laces your life with a lot of pain and loneliness. You are witness to the passing away of many of your loved ones, suffer from illness and pain but above everything many of your loved ones die before you, there are new diseases and above all you find yourself watching helplessly the erosion of traditions, values and above all institutions so much valued and revered. Queen Elizabeth had life span of 96 years and she was monarch for 70 years. While the length of her reign contributed to the timeless aspect of monarchy, she is also discredited with being witness to declining United Kingdom. While in the pre-World War-II period the glory of Britain was at its peak but today it is at its very lowest ebb.
British, the colonizer of America has its old history. From London they ruled over 20 per cent of the global population, Britain’s monarchy had sway over one third of the world. Essential factors of great power are five- population, territory, resources, endowment, economic capability, military strength and political stability and competence . In almost all these fronts Britain dropped about very low.
Britain today has just 14 scattered Islands, wherein too the wave of dissolution hovers over the shores. Scotland referendum underlines the decline of English culture and confidence. It was in her era that the much quoted line ‘‘The sun never sets on the British Empire’ was also laid to rest. What she leaves behind for her son, 77 years old Charles who will find life tough as a king King. He will have to carry the load of monarch on his shoulders.
Even before the news of her death was formally announced to the world by the BBC newscasters dressed in formal black protocol dress, there was a rush of posts on the social media of condolence, but more in lighter note of the all that was foreign in British starting with the foreign origin of the queen herself. Videos of all things foreign stolen from other countries, starting with the Kohinoor studded in Her Majesty’s crown, started doing rounds.
Retaining roots and traditions, accepting change leading to positive change. Monarchy provides cultural and psychological stability. Eternal values of duty, service, decency and self discipline. Her majesty. Permanent values though called archaic British monarch role formal and ceremonial. Three royals – Diana Harry and Meghan collapsed under the strain.
By middle of twentieth century, this position was taken over by fast emerging US, it did not hold power to dictate the world affairs. East Asia emerged as the focal point of global influence and EU also reduced Britain’s elitest status.
When she realized that monarch was in danger, she tried to reach out more to democracy. What cannot denied is that Queen Elizabeth was a natural ruler. She gracefully strode over many a royal and social crisis. She gracefully glided over the popular public hysteria after the death of Princess Diana. She negotiated most difficult situations like the turmoil created by her son and his wife inside the place and of course the referendum of Scotland. Throughout, the queen stood her ground and held her head high.
The world witnessed her humane side during the Covid-19 pandemic which hit UK the hardest. When the entire country was reeling under the impact of the virus, her television address to the nation came as soothing and supportive. She consoled those suffering and gave the British public confidence and solace to see if they want to stay with UK or leave it for independence after 307 years of being with England.
Despite the decline and erosion of Britain, it is a fact that in Britain, Monarchy and democracy walks hand in hand, each striving to keep up its presence. What the era of King Charles brings will have to be seen. But it is for sure that for the British and the foreign tourist, the era of royalty will continue to provide a fairy tale ambience to England and the sparkle from her majestic crown and sword still continue to excite the people, especially the tourists who collect in thousands outside the Buckingham Palace to watch the ‘change of guard” or visit the many summer and winter palaces to feel as near as possible to the British Royalty.