If the Queen doesn't save us, nothing will save her

By PETER HITCHENS, Mail on Sunday
October 19, 2003

Unless the Queen blocks the new European Constitution, we might as well get rid of her now. I am sorry to put this so bluntly.

I have defended the Monarchy against all comers for years. This is not because it attracts tourists. I wish they would go away and stay away.

It is not because I like the Windsors. They seem to be a pretty rum lot.

It is because, in the end, the Crown is a safeguard against tyranny. That safeguard is worthless if it is never used, or if it is only used too late.

It will be no good if, ten years hence, the Monarch decides to resist some piece of EU law that threatens the fundamental freedoms of the British people.

It is bad enough that she was talked into swallowing the Maastricht surrender by the dreadful John Major. But if she lets this go ahead, it is only a question of how soon she will be overruled by the EU's Supreme Court in Luxembourg and told to go back to opening nursing homes and dishing out knighthoods to arthritic rock stars.

The whole point of the Queen - and I suspect she knows this - is that she is there to defend the laws and customs of her people.

Silly republicans have never understood that here in this country the Crown is not a symbol of autocracy and oneman rule.

It is the exact opposite. It stands for the people's right to govern themselves according to laws accepted as just by all of us.

Thesearethelaws- especially the ancient Common Law of England - mosturgently threatened by the EU constitution.

NO other EU country apart from Ireland shares this tradition, which, even more than Parliament, sets us apart from our Continental neighbours.

The EU constitution will slowly impose an entirely alien code of justice, without juries or the presumption of innocence, which gives governments far too much power over their citizens.

Now is your chance, Your Majesty. Please take it.

Never has a government so richly deserved a Royal toe in the backside - and you would be amazed by the delight of the people if you delivered it.

And then we could all join in heartily with the politically incorrect, too-seldom-sung second verse of the National Anthem: 'May she defend our laws, and ever give us cause, to sing with heart and voice, "God Save the Queen."'

No comments have so far been submitted. Why not be the first to send us your thoughts, or debate this issue live on our message boards.

We are no longer accepting comments on this article.

Who is this week's top commenter? Find out now