Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Jock Who Would Be King



Thirty-six-year-old Daniel Westling, former personal trainer to Crown Princess Victoria Ingrid Alice Desirée of Sweden, wed the princess on Saturday, June 19. He will henceforth be known as Prince Daniel, Duke of Vastergotland.


A rather vocal minority in Sweden believes the monarchy is passé and anachronistic, with 22% wanting the monarchy abolished entirely, up from 15% just six years ago. And a Facebook group called "Refuse to Pay for Victoria's Wedding" garnered popularity.


The thirty-two-year-old Crown Princess is currently next in line for Sweden's throne, although it wasn't always the case. In 1980 the succession law was changed, making King Carl XVI Gustaf's heir his oldest child, regardless of gender. Poor Prince Carl Philip, Victoria's younger brother. So close ... and yet so far.


Though I can guess how this is going down (after all, it's a royalist sort of blog), what's your opinon of this royal wedding -- and of monarchies in general?


Should taxpayers have been burdened (no matter how insignificant the share to the individual citizen of Sweden) with the cost of the flowers, booze, and royal wedding band?


Do you think monarchies are outdated? A charming relic of the past? Part of the continuity of a kingdom's history that is great for tourism and should continue indefinitely?


None of the above? Please share your thoughts. And what do you think of the fact that a gym rat whose father was a postal employee will one day sit on the Swedish throne? Very cool? Or very appalling?

13 comments:

Robin said...

My first thought was "wow, what a nerdy looking guy".

My love for royal history completely conflicts with my modern political feelings of them. For political reasons, I do think monarchies should be abolished completely... but on the other hand, to me, it would be like destroying a historical building. So I sympathize with and understand those who want it abolished but I secretly hope it will never happen, at least not in my life time!

Leslie Carroll said...

Robin, you're right -- he looks more like Clark Kent than a personal trainer. Maybe Superman lurks beneath those glasses and slicked-back hair.

Thanks for your well reasoned comments. I'm of a similar mind, I suppose, particularly when it comes to regarding monarchies as venerated institutions; and I think there's something to be said for the old-world glamour they tend to connote.

That said, because the monarchies we're discussing are constitutional ones and the roles of the royals largely ceremonial, I do think that they should pay their own way in the world -- not to mention doing constructive things with their time, in addition to spending gobs of money. They can spend all they want, as long as it's their own.

dolleygurl said...

I definately think he doesn't look like my picture of a prince - especially when I think she is gorgeous. And I think it's a little weird that he was basically a nobody - but hey what do I know. Seeing as we don't have any monarchy here, I live vicariously - and hope that they are not abolished - even if they don't really do much. And they should have to pay their own way - unless they have some real role in the government.

Leslie Carroll said...

Heather, they certainly DO look like an odd couple. Good point. And you're right ... hey, who can ever answer for True Love?

And ... for my readers out there in the ether, who was the princes who was about to marry someone else recently and found out he was cheating on her and called it off? Anyone remember her name and kingdom?

Ms. Lucy said...

Clark Kent- lol! He really does look geeky. Being Canadian, we still have the Queen, but I have to tell you that it's not a big thing here (she's so only in name)and alot of Canadians want to do away with the monarchy...I don't know- the fairytale side of me feels nostalgic- but reality is that in no way could I stand being under any such ruling!

Leslie Carroll said...

Thanks so much for your perspective, Lucy! The British monarchy hasn't been an autocracy for centuries, and some may argue that it never was, though no Parliamentary body could prevent Henry VIII from saying "off with her head!" if that's the verdict he desired.

This could morph into a whole discussion of past monarchies as well. I'm writing about the world of La Reine Martyre, as you know, and France was far more autocratic than Britain. I think we'd all have trouble nowadays with the concept of the divine right of kings. Or the monarchy's waste of our tax dollars on their own lavish lifestyle ... though these days you read about congressmen and senators doing the same thing.

Ms. Lucy said...

Hmmm...that really is interesting- the part where you talk about divine right...Sometimes I really think that some parties and politicians do believe in that divine right (royalty or not- many of them are blinded by the 'light', when they reach the top!) In a way, you could say we've all replaced royalty with the new age 'celebs' and this includes politicians-lol!

Leslie Carroll said...

Spot-on, Ms. Lucy!! "American royalty" has always been sports stars, Hollywood celebs, and politicians. They have a ridiculous sense of noblesse oblige because WE'VE bestowed it on them? Who else would get away with a slap on the wrist for a DUI pullover, raping underage groupies, or oh, say, killing your wife and her friend?

婷珊 said...

幸福不是一切,人還有責任。............................................................

Leah Marie Brown said...

Dear Leslie,

You were kind enough to visit my blog a few months ago and leave a nice comment. What a shock when I cleared out an old email box and saw it - I read your book and loved it! How flattered I was to read your comment.

I am sorry I did not respond sooner, but I did nto see your comment. I hope you will visit my blog again soon and tell me what you think about the changes. I will be loading lots of new content, including a weekly feature called Tuesday's Titillating Trinkets and Treasures where I offer a juicy image and brief description of a forgotten object d'art form the 18th century.

Here's the address:
leahmariebrownhistoricals.blogspot.com

Finally, I have another blog that you might enjoy - On Life, Love and Accidental Adventures has lots of articles about my travels through Europe and historical finds.

leahmariebrown.blogspot.com

Again, thank you so much.

婷珊 said...

thx u very much, i learn a lot..................................................................

新順 said...
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盈廖生家秀蔡 said...

要持續更新下去喲!!祝你有個愉快心情..................................................................