Queen Elizabeth is the Queen of Canada
Canada's loyalty to the king is ailing
Canada's head of state, a British woman with a lot of German blood, is very popular in the second largest country on earth. As a person, not as an institution. Queen Elizabeth - officially "Her Majesty Elizabeth II, by the grace of God Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, head of the Commonwealth" and thus also Queen of Canada - enjoys great popularity among Canadians. But even among them there is a growing number of those who ask: Shouldn't we slowly afford our own head of state?
With the recent election of the liberal prime minister Justin Trudeau, who wants to do many things differently, Canada's republic supporters are hoping for an inventory of British ties. So far, the system of government has been shaped by the fact that a hereditary monarch is sovereign of Canada and Elizabeth II has played this role since 1952. You and other members of the House of Windsor serve in Canada. Her governor-general exercises many sovereign rights, vice-governors represent Elizabeth in the ten provinces, and the monarchy also represents the gigantic country in other states.
This is exactly what Canadians increasingly perceive as an anachronism, despite their affection for the royal figure (162 cm clear height) almost 150 years after Canada's independence on July 1, 1867. Likewise the fact that new citizens still have to swear the oath of loyalty to the Queen and her successors when they are naturalized. It is not uncommon today that new Canadians pledge their allegiance at the ceremony and then - with reference to their freedom of expression - declare that they do not feel bound by the oath with regard to the passage ’on the queen.
When the new government recently presented its legislative program in Ottawa, it did not give up the Queen's allegiance. Rather, the Governor General gave his "speech from the throne" as usual, the equivalent of the Queen's speech from the throne at the opening of Parliament in Westminster. But supporters of the republic hope that Trudeau's liberals will abolish the oath in the foreseeable future as a first step on the way to the elimination of the monarchy.
Tom Freda is the director of the Citizens for a Canadian Republic Movement. He thinks the current situation is paradoxical. “It is an indictment when the government declares to new citizens: 'You have to take the oath, but it means nothing more. You can afford it and lie. 'Just as schizophrenic, however, is the current legal situation. "
Canada's Republicans got a boost from the Trudeau election after the new head of government removed a portrait of the Queen that had hung in the State Department's vestibule under Harper's predecessor. Hope was dampened shortly afterwards when Trudeau toasted Elizabeth at a Commonwealth meeting and extolled her as "an enduring presence in the life of Canada." Civil rights activist Freda afterwards: This respect only referred to the person of the Queen, not to the institutions that she embodied. "Most of the liberals in government now want to abolish the monarchy as soon as the Queen's rule ends." Surveys support this: three-quarters of all Canadians say their head of state should be a Canadian - ultimately.
The Guardian of London quoted Steve Parish, Mayor of Ajax, Ontario Province, in this context. "I think heir to the throne, Prince Charles, can solve the problem." Even Republican Freda agrees. He is convinced that the future of the monarchy in Canada is called at the latest at the moment "when the hour strikes for the rule of Queen Elizabeth". Well, the queen is sprightly and jolly, but already 89 ...
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