For clarity, the programme wouldn't be 30 minutes of people slagging off the royals for the sake of it. It would be respectful and in keeping with the solemnity of the moment, but would simply look at the current events through an alternative lens. It would, in a nutshell, be what is known as journalism. And thirty minutes a day of that really isn't too much to ask, given that the monarchists would still have the remaining twenty-three-and-a-half hours of each day set aside for unchallenged propaganda.
The BBC could bring in one of their in-house republican presenters to front the show - it would presumably be OK for that person to 'come out' with their views, given that other presenters have had free licence to espouse monarchist views live on air since last Thursday. But in a way it might actually be interesting to have one of the monarchist presenters (like Huw Edwards) front the republican programme, just to see if they're journalistically dexterous enough to carry it off with the same level of enthusiasm.
Items for the show could include...
* What would be happening right now if Andrew had happened to be the eldest son, rather than Charles? Don't the implications of that question suggest that it's far too dangerous to leave it solely to accident of birth to find a suitable (or even semi-adequate) person to be Head of State? And could the monarchy actually survive the introduction of a legal mechanism to filter out undesirables, or would that be an "emperor has no clothes" moment?
* Has a terrible misjudgement been made in allowing Andrew to be one of the Counsellors of State, who take over the functions of the King when he is incapacitated or out of the country? Is that decision a giveaway that the monarchy is primarily motivated by family interest, rather than the interests of the country?
* Should the King have spoken out against the arrest of protestors? OK, such an intervention would have been highly unusual, but past monarchs have spoken out about issues that they found particularly important, and can there be anything more important than ensuring that a system of installing unelected Heads of State is consistent with the upholding of free speech?
* Should the cost of the funeral be sharply reduced? The Royal Family take pride in what their admirers describe as lives of "sacrifice" and "selflessness", so shouldn't that entail the dispensing with unnecessary frills in the middle of a cost of living crisis?
* How do particularly selfless members of the public, for example those who give up their homes for others or work in soup kitchens, compare to the "sacrifice" of the Royal Family? Do they live out their lives in greater or lesser luxury, and which sacrifice should we celebrate more?
* This is the first time that a new Head of State has assumed office since we moved into a less deferential age. Would this be an appropriate moment to have a referendum just to check the public are willing to give their considered consent to the system of non-election?
* Are the 'marks of respect' proposed for the day of the funeral causing an unnecessary and unwanted disruption to people's daily lives? Was the semi-lockdown that occurred when the Queen died an act of self-harm that may have needlessly made a recession more likely?
* How does the media coverage of the Queen's death and a new Head of State compare with the North Korean media? Are there obvious parallels in the attribution of almost superhuman qualities to a 'dear leader' who is supposedly admired more than any other person in the whole world? Are the sometimes rather absurd examples given of the leader's greatness (see the satirical pigeon video below) comparable to examples that the North Korean media regularly offer?
* Will the replacement of a popular monarch with a less popular one hasten the break-up of the United Kingdom?
* Should the King pay inheritance tax in the way that any other person would be obliged to?
* Are there at least ten news stories happening in the world right now that are more important than a long queue?
the news atm pic.twitter.com/0cuK0qV3NO— Michael Spicer (@MrMichaelSpicer) September 14, 2022
The trajectory of British history has led inexorably to this astonishing crossover moment when Jedward start to make more sense than the BBC.https://t.co/JhwJ2tk52d— James Kelly (@JamesKelly) September 14, 2022
Not since my days in the Soviet Union have I witnessed what I have experienced from the @BBCNews today. Off the scale.— Nigel Bagshaw (@nigelbagshaw) September 14, 2022
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