‘Girls equal in British throne succession’, that’s a blow to equality, say ed

“Sons and daughters of any future UK monarch will have equal right to the throne, after Commonwealth leaders agreed to change succession laws. - bbc

I really wonder what feminists and equal rights activists will have to say about this.  I really do.  Would some say that it is a victory for women’s rights and equality?

This is a paradoxical situation.  It is a subsidiary progress in equality, but generic blow to it.  In fact, it is a greater affront to equality than progress. 

That bloke Cameron states,

''The idea a younger son should become monarch instead of an elder daughter simply because he's a man... is at odds with the modern countries we have become''

Why ed knows that this is a blow to equality and democracy is because it is an Incorporative Elitist Strategy (ed’s term).  In other words, to maintain the class system, what one has to do is to incorporate the ‘buy in’ or acquiescence of all.  And the best way to to do it is to bring about equality for all within the hierarchical system so as to strengthen overarching inequality even further. 

Once you can bring about equality within classes, give them a job, and ‘angry birds’ to play with, you will enable people to do their best to make it within their class, and not question the classes above. For instance, giving americans of African origin equality in America; giving women equality in most parts of the world; having equal rights commissions that seek to ensure that nobody is discriminated against, might come across as significant milestones and watchtowers along the highway of democracy and progress.  It is not.  There was far more consciousness of equality in the plebeian revolt against the patricians (494 b.c.), or the slave uprisings in the Serville wars (135-71 b.c.) in Roman times.

All this does is to quell remonstrances amongst the disaffected whom are struggling against each other, and at each others' expense, for significance and success.  Once you can bring about equality within classes, give them a job, and ‘angry birds’ to play with, you will enable people to do their best to make it within their class, and not question the classes above.  That is when they will finally be able to blame each other for not ‘making it’ because discrimination of all sorts have been eradicated.  When one can assign blame to one’s own class for not making it (as opposed to the primates populating the upper class like the ‘prince’ williams and ‘queen’ elizabeths, the pop ‘stars’, and other ‘celebs’, the Donald Trumps and Oprah Winfreys, the Blairs and Bushes, etc, etc,), people aren’t going to look upwards for the true cause of why they ALL can’t make it. 

When disenchanted sectors of the lower classes have equality granted them, and this equality extolled in equality within upper classes, the lower classes will tend to live their significance vicariously through their enfranchised counterparts in the upper classes. When disenchanted sectors of the lower classes have equality granted them, and this equality extolled in equality within upper classes, the lower classes will tend to live their significance vicariously through their enfranchised counterparts in the upper classes. i.e. blacks in the lower classes feeling proud that a black man (or a semi-black man) has become president.  They will lose sight of their generic appreciation of the idea of equality when their subsidiary desire for equality is satisfied. 

That is why Cameron can use the terms ‘monarch’ and ‘modern’ in the same line.  That is why the title of the BBC article can contain ‘equal’ and ‘throne’ in the same line.  Those are contradictions mate.  How can anyone spit out the words ‘throne’ or ‘monarch’ in the same line as ‘equal’ and ‘modern’ unless it is to show why they are contradictions?  To do otherwise is to render them synonymous.  They are telling you that one can live the ‘modern’ and ‘equal’ life within a grossly inequitable system, but with the reality of the former rendering the evil of the latter, negligible.



  1. Interesting point of view you put on equality and the monarchy. Although I see where you are coming from I think we shouldn't throw the baby away with the bathwater. What I mean is, I agree with you that the new law to give 'equality' to women in respect of the throne is not about any real equality for women. In fact as socialists we argue for the immediate disolution of the monarchy.

    I wouldn't however go that far the other way as to say it is a step backwards for women. As socialists living in a capitalist society we need to campaign and fight for every reform possible- not that this law is a reform by any stretch- and reforms do not strengthen class inequality. Every victory of working class people is a step in the right direction however small and trivial it may appear.

    This is why when we stand in council elections we campaign for things like more recycling bins etc. These victories do not appease the class into a false sense of comfort but give them more often than not the confidence to take part in further battles. In any case this is a particular law not a reform for the class and really not something most people care about at all either way.

  2. Hi Anonymo,

    My point isn't that this is a step backward for women. My point is that it is a step backward for everyone regardless of gender. That, i reiterate, as you haven't considered that point, is because people are trained via such instances as is highlighted in this article is to be satisfied at being represented in the upper classes despite the large majority not being allowed access to it. And, generally, all, regardless of gender, have impressed upon them that mutual equality and class inequality can exist side by side without serving as a contradiction of each other. In that, it is not a feminist issue here.

    That is already illustrated in the way people worship celebrities, celebrate the 'royal' wedding, blacks celebrating the election of Obama, rooting for OJ Simpson during his trial years ago, etc, etc. It tends to give people the faith that they can, in theory, take any position in society. This tends to dilute their consciousness of themselves as a class via these cross-cutting similarities with the women, blacks, etc, etc, whom have 'made it'.

    This allows the growth of a culture of 'self-blame' where people can say that if they or others don't 'make it', its their own fault as there are other blacks, women, poor, etc, whom have. Once the lower classes are 'represented' in the valued classes, it serves as 'proof' that if they themselves don't make it, it's because of a lack of 'luck', their own fault, not having the right attributes, etc, etc. That is treating women as equals in the 'royal' sector is a step back for all as it serves as an effort to present privileged sectors as 'equal' within classes despite being unequal between classes.

    As for small victories for the lower classes not appeasing them into a false sense of comfort, that is a statement of faith, not fact. Once personal concerns are satisfied, people generally don't bother about the rest. This is especially so where the class system is increasingly being taken as a natural. Celebrities play a significant role in this as they 'entertain' the masses whilst seemingly being rewarded by the masses for it to the point that they can occupy a class above them. This popularises the idea and naturalness of the class system as a whole as it appears to the people that it is validated by them. There are precious few whom are going to say, 'wow! i love this band, their music is great! I got every one of their CDs, why are they earning so much?!'

    One cannot just cannot have faith that things are going to change for the better by looking at our small victories. We have to look at how things have degenerated from the time that Sydney Webb drafted the Clause IV in 1917 to the social conditions that enabled Blair to rewrite it in favour of the right in 1995 with impunity. One has to look at, for instance, how the 'Take Back Parliament' movement, a supposedly democratic organisation, can urge the people to vote in favour of a system that marginalises minority parties. There are many other instances which indicates the evolution of the people toward accepting what's right as natural - as opposed to the 'left'. The left is obviously missing out on something here. An understanding of 'what's that?' has to precede the means and methods we use to get society back on track toward egalitarianism.

    What is required is that collective mutual empathy has to be engendered, along with an uplifting of their own collective self-esteem, political potency, and potentials so that they would not fall prey to the psychological consequences of exposure to the media, leaders of political parties - even if it is their own party - and so on. Small victories in getting out recycling bins, and fixing a traffic light at this or that point of a street simply serves to make life within a hierarchically-divided humanity more palatable, and with the passage of generations, natural.

  3. Interesting discussion, Ed. I found your reply to anonymo more enlightening than the original blog and interpret what you say there as explaining the problem about the false optimism that the idea of a meritocracy gives us - that we can all get on, we can all rise to the top. At the moment, all parties give lip service - and perhaps genuine belief - to the idea of 'social mobility' - as if everyone can move out of poverty, deprivation, poor housing, poor education, low paid work - simply by their own efforts. And, as you say, if they somehow 'fail' to do so, it can only be their own fault - not the system that actually makes such 'equality' impossible. This, apart from its falsity, also implies that somehow it's a shameful thing to be a person who does not aspire to middle-class consumerism, that one is a loser for not wanting to buy a bigger house, have more expensive clothes, food, cars and holidays. As you point out, building confidence among working people - perhaps this means the same as 'collective self-esteem' - is necessary - although clearly there are disagreements about how this is to be achieved. For my part, I think both the practical improvements in people's lives that anonymo uses as an example of how Socialists can show working people that changes in their lives are possible and more radical encouragement to participate in protest and industrial and civil action must be part of what we do. Does that sound too much like a liberal let's be nice to everybody approach!

  4. Hi Isobel, long time no see;)

    Generally, with regards to your personal view of it, i don't see any problem with that. It is the details comprising this overarching approach that i'm interested in.


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