Why should I care about the royal wedding?

30 Apr

Today is the historic wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. I don’t get it. What is the fuss all about?

OK, it’s probably the most pompous, expensive and publicised wedding ever in the whole history of human kind, but that’s just the point: why? What makes these people so special that nearly two billion people (including me!) are watching this wedding on TV or in person?

Are these two young people, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, going to have some sort of major influence for good on the rest of the world? Do they have intrinsic qualities or have they performed wonderful deeds that makes them worthy of near-worship?

As far as I’m aware, they are just ordinary people, born in noteworthy, privileged families. So what is it that leads people to such idolatrous behaviour? Perhaps it has to do with the fact that Kate is really pretty and thin, matching Western society‘s ideals of what a perfect woman should be like. Perhaps it’s also about the rags-to-riches fantasy that is an important theme in our culture’s folklore such as fairy tales and nursery rhymes. After all, Kate Middleton is not royalty, she is a mere “commoner”, and now she, like her husband’s mother Diana, has risen to immense world-wide popularity and applause just because of who she married.

My guess is that the whole thing is more linked to the huge power of the media than to anything else. The British Royal family is a massive money-making “golden goose” for the media. Billions of dollars of revenues are made each year from the sale of newspapers, trashy magazines, news stories and television programs centered on the Royal family. People love to read about their ups and downs, their departures from royal protocol and etiquette, their good and bad deeds etc. Thanks to modern “journalism”, people have become mass-voyeurs. They sit at home or in doctors’ waiting rooms, reading the latest self-proclaimed “gossip” about what the Celebs (of whom the royal family form a very important segment) are up to, and they dream of possessing their wealth, beauty and influence.

My view is rather cynical I suppose. Anne-Marie enjoys the whole celebration, and I admit that I enjoyed the religious service, particularly the music composed by Sir Hubert Parry. We both appreciated the simplicity of Kate’s dress and make-up, a far cry from the ugly ostentatiousness displayed by stars of the movie industry. I have nothing against the proceedings themselves, they were very well orchestrated and performed. What I don’t get is the reason behind them.

Why all this fuss? It’s very well and good to jump up for joy, to celebrate and to rejoice, but there needs to be a good reason for it. What are we happy about? I mean, every wedding should probably put a smile on my face, but why is this one so much more important that warrants such extremes of exultation? Does it represent a hope for better days ahead for those who avidly watch every minute of the proceedings of this wedding, and those who know every trivial fact about William and Kate’s lives? Do they expect the world to be a better place, or their own lives to be more joyful, as a result of this wedding?

Who knows? I’m probably not a good judge of what goes through the minds of billions of people. All I’m saying is that I don’t get it, something within me is screaming that all this is wrong, a great big farce, a gargantuan masquerade. This grotesquely lavish ceremony is so over-the-top, so costly, and accomplishes so little in the grand scheme of things. Who will benefit from the nearly 12 million dollars spent on it? Who else could have benefited, and to what extent could that money have changed their lives? OK, I understand that the broadcast and merchandising of the event is going to bring millions of dollars of revenue from sales, but is that the best way people have of spending their money?

Never mind, I guess some people will be uplifted and given hope as they watch all this, and it may stimulate England’s suffering economy. I’m not entirely opposed to all this, I’m just a bit dismayed by the current trends of celebrity worship, and the business the media is making out of it. I think it can distract us from issues that really matter.

With all that said, I wish William and Kate all the happiness they can get in their marriage!

1 Comment

Posted by on April 30, 2011 in 750words, Life


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One response to “Why should I care about the royal wedding?

  1. morningstarrambles

    May 9, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    I feel the same! I’m a girl, but I just don’t get drawn into stuff like that. I’m very practical and would much rather put that kind of money to better causes. You don’t need oodles of money to get married. One sister in our ward talked about how grateful she was for eternal marriage. She said, “I have my own fairytale wedding. I’m a queen and I married a king.” Loved it!


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