It is a tradition in our family to try and listen to the Queen’s Christmas speech. We are all committed royalists at heart. British royalty, anyway; and any of the others that behave in a truly royal manner and are not mere leeches.
That doesn’t stop me from being critical. If the Queen wrote her own speech as she usually does, she should have spotted that trap in ‘the angels came down to frightened shepherds’ and either changed the word order or made darn sure that the ‘-ed’ was produced with extra-clear elocution. For a startled minute, I did wonder why the angels were said to have been frightening the poor shepherds.
Also, I wondered what ‘orphan’ she was on about, but it appears to be her pronunciation of the word ‘often’. Has she always done that, and I’ve only just noticed?
Anyway, I found it significant that her message was uncompromisingly Christian. I am in favour of that, but of course it will add fuel to the fires of the squealing minority who feel it is insulting to them for the predominating religion or customs of a country to be stressed.
My own ideas on that are the same as those which prevailed when we chose, as non-Catholics, to send our daughters to Catholic schools. In return for the excellence of the education, we expected the girls to conform to the customs and practices they would find there. It was up to them to decide whether to do so out of politeness, or to become committed themselves. It was not up to them to criticise.
© Colonialist December 2011 (Letterdash/WordPress)