We Don’t Owe the Monarchy Our Grief
I was born in a country that used to be a part of the Commonwealth: Nigeria. A country that just got its’ independence from Great Britain in 1960. A country that is younger than my mother. A country that was torn apart because of colonialism’s chokehold on it. A country that still suffers tremendously today because of England’s deep legacy of imperialism. The greed, the global gaslighting, the genocide that the Monarchy has propagated cannot be measured.
Queen Elizabeth II was the heavy head that wore the crown in that gilded cage that did at its best, maintained this dangerous legacy and at its worst, deepened its reach by refusing to give other entities their independence. Even now. But even at its best, enabling is complicity.
She ruled for 70 years. “London Bridge has fallen” was the code name for her death, had she died in London. She died in Scotland, so it was Operation Unicorn. Her death makes for complicated emotions for many, yes. But to many more, it can be argued, her death is not to be mourned (or even celebrated) but to be noted that even royalty falls.
The Monarchy is an institution that cannot be separated from genocide, cultural destruction and theft and diasporic pillaging. Diamonds are forever, including stolen ones, but those jewels don’t keep hearts beating.
I don’t subscribe to the idea of “we don’t speak ill of the dead.” We will speak the truth about their harm. And the high road can go to hell, if it ain’t built on truth.
We are not obligated to grieve our oppressors.
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