At the age of 21-year Princess Elizabeth accompanied her parents on a tour of South Africa during which she was asked to make a broadcast to the world. Instead of saying the sorts of things most 21 years old would say, she made a lifelong vow: “I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service.” It was only four years later that Elizabeth became Queen of one of the world’s most powerful nations.
The change to Australia’s national anthem with “For we are young and free” amended to “For we are one and free” has met with mixed results for varying reasons with some for, some against, others not bothered and with some wanting a new anthem altogether.
However, what the change has done is to make people realise that Australia’s national anthem actually has no legal basis. There is no act of Parliament and other than several surveys and a confusing poll in the 1970s which voted on a tune and not the words, there has been no formal plebiscite whereby the people, whose national anthem it is supposed to be, have been given an opportunity to vote both before the adoption of a sanitised song was announced in 1984 or when it was amended in 2021.
It seems only yesterday the announcement of his birth was televised across the globe, but the British royal family’s “jolliest” and “best dressed” member, the young Prince George of Cambridge, is turning seven years old today (22nd July).
Republic lobbyists are proposing a new system that would give the political party in office such significant influence over the powers of the head of state it would pave the way for a dictatorship to form.