READER REPORT:

We are lucky to have the Queen

JIM CABLE
Last updated 05:00 16/11/2012
queen
Getty Images
ROYALTY: Queen Elizabeth II.

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We've asked readers what they think of the royal family and whether they still have a role to play in New Zealand. To contribute hit the green button.

Our royal connection is a very old and New Zealand is in the incredibly fortunate position of having its own Queen and royal family as an office that cost us virtually nothing.

The taxpayers of Britain pick up almost all of the tab - our contribution being limited to the costs of maintaining and housing our governor general as well as meeting the comparatively trifling costs of the occasional royal tour.

After 60 years on the throne, the Queen is more loved and respected than ever - not just in all parts of the Commonwealth, but in virtually every other country in the world. She is an incredible figurehead who conveys and represents all of the old virtues - the ones that gave substance and meaning to the ideals of family life and to the excellence of individual aspiration.

The Queen and her office unites the Commonwealth and she, as a person, inspires in most of us the sort of warmth one feels for family, along with an almost tangible sense of gratitude that she is there. We have the best of all worlds, our Queen reigns - she does not rule. She's above politics - and yet she's a central point of our political system.

The Queen is head of our law, but plays no part in its processes whatsoever - the significance of which is lost on most, but is nevertheless a most protecting feature of our democracy. By her holding that office it is denied to anyone else - and that value is beyond calculation.

In comparison to what we have, a republic would cost us billions, and we'd have to face the prospect of presidential elections every so often - along with all the destabilising nonsense that is attendant.

Only fools and idiots, who've never bothered to examine the attendant advantages, would seek a republic over what we now are so lucky to possess.


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