Letter: End of the peers?

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The Independent Culture
Sir: "A worthy package" (leading article 25, November) seems hardly an apt description of a Queen's Speech of which the item most likely to consume debating time is concerned with major constitutional reform at a time when practical measures are urgently required to deal with pressing human distress, not only in our own country but in the world of which we are a part. What happened about the professional trained force - an army of peace - that was conceived a few years ago to be on instant call to deal with any emergency anywhere, a hurricane, a flood, an earthquake or a civil war?

The question whether we should preserve the traditional context in which the highlights of the procedure of our government take place - the crown, the throne, men walking backwards in wigs and tights, and so forth, or replace it with something more workmanlike and austere, is surely a matter mainly of aesthetic taste, for the Arts Council, perhaps, or the College of Arms, to deal with rather than the Prime Minister.

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