What to Expect From King Charles III Monarchy
King Charles III is the new King of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth countries after his mother, Queen Elizabeth II’s death on September 8. Charles’s succession is expected to rekindle the discussion about the monarchy’s future, which some still view as an emblem of national unity and cohesion and as a remnant of feudal heritage from the past reigns. Politically, the future of the MonarchMonarch is therefore uncertain because, unlike Queen Elizabeth II, who was sublimely involved in politics, King Charles III has often directly indulged in politics despite the Monarch’sMonarch’s history of political neutrality. While it is expected that the King will never be directly involved in politics, his non-active involvements are hard to predict.
Charles Political Arena
Charles has had an active political life in the past decades. However, he lacks the aura Queen Elizabeth II effectively built during her reign. Unlike Charles, the Queen was cautious not to be involved directly in national governors; however, her influence would be felt (Sharma, 2022). The Queen’s active political participation was cautioning Margaret Thatcher against apartheid in South Africa, the removal of Gough Whitlam as an Australian Minister in 1975, and political discussions with David Cameron in 2014 (Shrimsley, 2022). As a result, the Queen became a global symbol of unity because leaders could project their aspirations, desires, fantasies, and fury onto her without worrying about bias.
Conversely, King Charles has actively lobbied for health, education, and immigrants’ openly (Foster, 2022). In addition, the King is known for his political stand on various subjects, including genetically engineered crops, homeopathic medications, and architecture. Sometimes, he appears as a politically controversial figure, hardly expected of a monarch (Foster, 2022). Nevertheless, Charles has always sworn he will follow her mother’s path and quit political controversies.
Charles’s public persona has majorly been shaped by his period as Prince of Wales. His controversial personal life also appeared with his relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles, the current Crown of Queen Consort, and his divorce from Princess Diana (Twaij, 2022). Additionally, the Prince has been known for his strong position on climate issues, relations with China, and the controversial government immigration of Rwanda (Sharma, 2022). At one point, Charles became a political campaigner writing letters recognized as the “black spider memos” in 2004 and 2005 that touched on sensitive matters, including the war in Iraq. Such a move directly breached the monarchy’s impartial and commemorative role in British politics (Foster, 2022). In essence, Charles has always defied the convention that the royals should desist from political indulgence.
The Monarchy Under the New King
King Charles III is yet to face challenging times as he took the throne when over 62% of the subjects still supported the monarchy (Serhan, 2022). However, the outpouring of affection and respect to the Queen should never be misconstrued as unwavering support for the Royal Family. Some of the sentiments have been fueled by the recent controversy surrounding the treatment of Prince Harry and Meghan and sexual assault allegations against her son, Prince Andrew (Serhan, 2022). The most challenging test for the incoming King will be to follow in his mother’s footsteps and remain an apolitical symbol of Common Wealth unity.
Prince Charles III will be expected to decrease his political interest. Since the monarchy symbolizes national unity, the King is expected to maintain neutrality. Charles has already admitted this in his first national speech, stating, “it will no longer be feasible for me to devote so much of my time and efforts to the organizations and subjects about which I am so passionate” (Serhan, 2022). On the other hand, the King will also ensure the institution stays in an era when monarchs and hereditary privileges appear more antiquated (Serhan, 2022). That endeavor is anticipated to be expanded under Charles by reducing the Royal Family to just seven active working monarchs. Meanwhile, King Charles still has time to demonstrate his leadership as the new head of the MonarchMonarch.
Under King Charles III, the monarchy might not return to its Elizabethan glory. Apart from his popularity, Charles has already welcomed many challenges: the culminating breakup of the U.K., the implosion of the Commonwealth, the looming recession, and the awakening to the unsavory aspects of the Royal Family’s past and its tradition and legacy. However, as a Prince, he has shown to have what it takes to lead the MonarchMonarch. It is believed that King Charles will be a less political leader and mainly the head of the MonarchMonarch.
- Foster, M. (2022). What can the world expect from King Charles III? CNN World. https://edition.cnn.com/2022/09/08/uk/king-charles-iii-england-profile-intl/index.html
- Serhan, Y. (2022). The Future of the British Monarchy Is More Uncertain Than Ever. TIME. https://time.com/6212370/british-monarchy-future-king-charles-iii/
- Sharma, G. (2022). Who is Britain’s King Charles III? Aljazeera. https://www.aljazeera.com/features/2022/9/9/who-is-britains-king-charles-iii
- Shrimsley, R. (2022). How will King Charles influence politics in the U.K.? Financial Times. https://www.ft.com/content/52d775b0-a575-460a-a8c8-678a84b0f93d
- Twaij, A. (2022). There are lots of reasons to end the British monarchy. King Charles III is the best. THINK. https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/queen-elizabeth-king-charles-iii-end-monarchy-rcna47104