Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Should all Knighthoods be the Sovereign's prerogative?

By David Byers (Convenor of ACM in Country, New South Wales)

Some years ago a friend of mine said “you’ve got to wonder about a nation that gives Knighthoods to rock stars”, and he had a point. Why on earth should the Crown be brought down so low as to be giving such honours to people like Elton John or ex-Beatles? I got to thinking about the process the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches goes through in making saints, now I know a Knighthood is not even close to those great honours but it is still something great.

The other problem is with politicians advising the Queen to Knight one of their political pals, something that has happened in the Australian State of Queensland for many years. Now in Australia our governments no longer advise the Sovereign to make Knights, only the Queen can give out Knighthoods to her Australian subjects on her own prerogative. Should this be the case in the UK? Maybe it should be the case that Knighthoods are only given out at the Sovereign's personal prerogative, for all her Realms.


Irish Tory said...

I agree, it is cringe making to see medicore media whores like Elton John or Mick Jagger getting the same honour as Sir Thomas Moore or Sir Winston Churchill!

They should be reserved for the Queen or future King to hand out!

Perhaps some exeptional actors or singers could get it, like Dame Kiri De Kanawa, but this would be the exception and not the rule as it seems to be now!

Marquis Black said...

Agreed. Let Knighthoods return to the Royal prerogative!

Scott said...

I agree too. They've been debased. Sir Tom Jones... the whole chivalrous line, from Lancelot to Churchill, shudders in the grave.

Lord Best said...

I do not mind if the occassional popular entertainer is recognised, but it is getting out of hand. The Beatles, well, I'd rather listen to Bach but they were/are one of the greatest musical phenomenons in human history. Elton John? Not so much.

Stauffenberg said...

Knighthoods are linked to different honours. Some honours are the Queen’s prerogative, others are not. While Mr Byers’ suggestions are most agreeable they are not realistic. If you look at the extent of Birthday and New Years Honours lists there has to be some sort of government involvement, however wanting.

I would forget the churches in this context. As for the comparison with the RC Church, some of the more recent beatifications by the late pope caused controversy, too.

Looking back at knighthoods, there was always bargaining and window-dressing involved, except that it did not take place in the public domain to such a degree as we are having now.

I just feel that we have to accept a fair share of trade union blimps, trashy celebrities, retiring backbenchers etc. to accompany real worthies.

Fast bowlers, goalkeepers and singers, by the way, can be as deserving as scientists or rear admirals. The public are not daft. They recognise if they are facing any run-of-the-mill Sir Tufton Bufton, or a yodelling fruitcake or someone perhaps slighty more deserving.

David Byers said...

I don't see my idea as not realistic, as it is how it operates in Australia. We have the Order of Australia that is given out in the name of the Queen by our politicians but they are not knighthoods. The knighthood in Australia can only be given out by the Queen.

Stauffenberg said...

Indeed, you're right there, point seen and taken - I wasn't thinking of teh Australian way in particular. Thanks for the clarification.

Scott said...

I think it's probably fair to say that even then the Queen is advised, come to think of it. Her grasp and knowledge of a nation's life cannot be total.

Still. Elton John...