i Editor's Letter: Savour the celebrations


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The Independent Online


As some of you will be at the start of a four-day break or a week-long half-term holiday, let's start with some fun. I tweeted this earlier, but if you have not seen it, you would need a heart of stone not to melt at "Isaac's Live Lip-Dub Proposal". Check it out for yourself here. Even the grumpiest anti-Royalists among us will surely be cheered, albeit temporarily.

That said, I think you would also need a heart of stone not to have found some cheer in the sight of the little girls dressed as the Queen, and boys in Union Flag costumes that I have seen wandering about already. Admittedly, my part of west London is not exactly a hotbed of fervent republicanism, but I suspect such scenes are being repeated across most of the country.

This week, i has given voice to republicans ranging from Andreas Whittam Smith to Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Katherine Butler and Amol Rajan. But these colleagues of mine, and other members of the liberal metropolitan elite, plus those readers that have written in to support their views, are in a distinct minority. The major Mori poll researching our attitudes to the monarchy found 80 per cent of us in favour; 88 per cent among over-55s. And Amol and others would have been disheartened to learn only 17 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds are republican.

There is then at least one institution which still binds together a majority of us. So, as there is nothing the "antis" can now do about the pageant, the parade and the street parties, why not just sit back and enjoy the spectacle and the smiles of so many, both young and old?

Savour it, because it's safe to say most of us will not see an event like it again in our lifetimes – rain, or no rain.