Australians welcome Prince Harry, celebrate the centenary of the RAN; republicans whinge
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Wednesday, 09 October 2013

Why don't the republicans just lighten up? There are now upset because when he welcomed Prince Harry to Kirribilli House, the Prime Minister Tony Abbott said: "Prince Harry, I regret to say that not every Australian is a monarchist, but today everyone feels like a monarchist."

The chairman of the Australian Republican movement took umbrage at this.

As ACM's  ACT Convenor Gary Kent says, it is because they are so bereft of any significant support.

 

 

The Prime Minister added these facts which the Australian Republican movement would no doubt prefer people did not recall:

 

"You grace us as your family has graced our nation from its beginning and it's quite fitting on a day such as this, when we think back over 100 years of the Australian navy, that you are here as the crown is a symbol of stability, continuity, decency in our public life."

 

According to Lauren Wilson writing in The Australian the comments from Mr Abbott, "once an executive director of Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy, were attacked as political and divisive. Australian Republican Movement chairman Geoff Gallop said they were 'totally inappropriate'.and 'divisive''.

 

He later told SKY television that people would feel better under a (politicians') republic.  Gary Kent pointed out the vast number of Australians who have come out to welcome Prince Harry, The Queen and Prince William.

 

Mr Abbott's colleague Malcolm Turnbull, a prominent republican, dismissed the remarks. "I never feel like a monarchist," he told the ABC. "I am glad the royal charisma overwhelmed everyone, even the Prime Minister."

 

Lauren Wilson asked Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy's national convener about the ARM complaint. The National Convenor  said the comments were "highly appropriate" and that the republican movement "shouldn't get so hung up".

"It was meant as nothing more than a welcome gesture and I am told by people who were there that it was appreciated. What he said was light, it was amusing, and it just indicated that while people had different views about the constitutional future of the country, there was widespread appreciation of the Prince."

 

The point surely is that instead of again getting the taxpayers to pay for some republican model to be put to the people, the republicans should go somewhere, work out what they want and then  explain to the Australian people how the new constitution they want  would improve the government of Australia and why we should have a new flag.