Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sweden got a new princess! Time to end the monarchy?


The Swedish Crown Princess Victoria just had a daughter.  The little girl born today is now second in line (after her mother) to inherit the Swedish throne. Everyone in Sweden are thrilled. Of course it is very exciting news for the royal family. 

I just think it is kind of silly that Sweden, a modern democracy, still has a royal family. The reason why we still do is because the Swedish king at the beginning of the last century accepted, without the need of a revolution, to be just a figurehead while the parliament and government took over the rule of the kingdom. 

It’s as expensive to have a president and president elections as it is to have a royal family, is one common argument for keeping the status quo. It’s so much more fun having royals, is another common one.  Maybe because I haven't lived in Sweden for many years, but I just think the whole thing is so wrong. Especially since this new little princess of Sweden now will be brought up to one day be Queen without having any say in the matter. 

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel (a former nobody from a rural town in northern Sweden) at their wedding in 2010. They met when he was hired to be her personal trainer. 

Now I wasn’t always against the idea of monarchy. Growing up I loved history and I actually memorized the name and ruling years for every king and queen since the time of Gustav Vasa (1523-1560). I too thought it was fun that we had a king who travelled around Sweden visiting different cities, opened factories, held speeches, and handed over the awards to the Nobel Prize winners.

In fact, this is the royal family’s most important job – attending the Nobel Prize ceremony and dinner party that is airing live on Swedish TV every December. The whole country then gets to admire the queen and the princesses in their fancy dresses and jewelry. Except Victoria’s younger sister Princess Madeleine has been living in New York the last couple of years and “been too busy” to bother showing up and looking pretty at this event. Isn’t that what the Swedish taxpayers are paying her to do? (The Royal family gets millions in spending money each year from the government). 

Princess Madeleine at the Nobel Prize ceremony. She was listed among the hottest royal women by Forbes Magazine in 2009. Currently living in New York, dating an American stock broker. 

My proposal is to discontinue the monarchy when the current King dies (or decides to retire) and replace him with a president chosen by popular vote. Crown Princess Victoria is very popular (today probably more than ever!) and if she chose to run she'd be sure to win. But that, of course, would be a choice for her to make. 

Prince Carl-Philip. Born a Crown Prince but relegated to Prince when the Act of succession was changed by the parliament so that the oldest child, regardless of sex, would inherit the throne. Carl-Philip has often been voted the hottest Swede by the Swedish gay magazines. He is currently dating a (female) former TV reality star. 

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Carl-Philip has my vote too!! But down with monarchies. It should be merit, not bloodlines. Hetero-only marriages are also quaintly historic, but we're moving away from that!

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