For better or worse, wonderful pageantry, profound continuity and rich symbolism. The queen’s sheer stamina has provided for two generations of Britons comforting stability amid a kaleidoscope of change.
— Robert Moore,
Leaders who don’t have to talk to Barbara Walters.
Leaders who don’t have to look as if they are enjoying themselves in public.
— Adrian Higgins,
Post gardening writer
When I was young, I thought Americans missed nothing by not having a royal family. Why worship inherited privilege or waste energy on pointless pomp? I played soccer against Prince Edward’s school, and I kicked him in the shins and thought, “Ha!”
Many years on, I have outgrown my republicanism. Nobody should invent a royal family, but if you’ve got one, why not make the most of it? The royals do seem to unite the country, like the BBC or the national pastime of griping about the lousy weather. They offer glamour of a kind, but with more stability than Hollywood. A friend recently remarked that a royal wedding was just about the only event that excited everybody in his Dorset village. Perhaps polarized Americans are missing something after all.
— Sebastian Mallaby,
journalist and writer
A symbol of exemplary leadership, public service and permanence at an amazingly good price, as well as the best pageantry on Earth. Do Americans miss it, 236 years after separating from the crown? Not for me to say. But 30 million of you watched the royal wedding last year, and I am sure millions more will join us in congratulating Her Majesty on her 60th anniversary. That says something.
— Peter Westmacott,
The crucial roles that the royal family performs, to the immense pride and relief of British subjects:
1. Blocking access to the top spot. The U.S. and the U.K. are seething with limelight seekers, many of whom are tiresome. The royal family blocks these people from cluttering up British TV screens by occupying the top spot in a graceful, authoritative way. Unfortunately, in the U.S. (where I happily live), there is a continuous struggle for said top spot by reality stars and other.
2. Outstanding leadership in hats: How many British women would wear hats if it weren’t for HMQ showing the way? This is all good for one’s skin, stimulates conversation and gives hope to the fashion industry.