The Diamond Jubilee piggyback on Team GB and celebrity knobs
HAVE you seen those adverts on the sides of London buses, the ones telling us that Ahmadiyya Muslim Association UK is happy about the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee? “CONGRATULATIONS YOUR MAJESTY,” says the banner by a link to a website called MuslimsForPeace.org.uk.
That website tells us:
It would surprise many to know that an established Muslim Community in Britian [sic] is celebrating the forthcoming Diamond Jubilee
It would be surprising if such an asinine organisation wasn’t. The Diamond Jubilee is sold as celebration of belonging. It’s about civic pride, something only the Swiss are very good at that, and they also think fascism and assisted suicide are the way forward. It’s 1977 and all that, with street parties, bunting and TV news featuring pictures of mums in aprons spooning jelly into the faces of kids invited to the Royal feast so long as they bring their own food, stay at home and wash up afterwards.
As luck has it the Diamond Jubilee coincides with the European Football Championship and the London Olympics. If Her Maj isn’t your bag, or you’re just indifferent to her and hers, you can scream along to the football and the cycling. It will be one long scream of patriotic joy that the Royal Family can harness for their own ends. Wave a flag – that logo seen on dresses and in showbiz magazines – and Her Majesty might just wave back.
One tier down, Harry, Kate and Wills be invited to clap along with the fans and look ‘normal’, a trio of loveable extras from Made In Chelsea working the celebrity lens with an manufactured aura of familiarity, playing dress ups while we look away from the oddity of an unelected family leading what pretends to be a democratic country, a shining beacon of freedom to stick on the faces of the Chinese and other unenlightened places.
You are not a citizen. You are a subject. The Royals are desperate for that to remain so, and will hitch their jubilee to anything that gets us excited.
Muslims For Peace – and what of MuslismAgainstPeace, MuslimsForARepublic and MuslimsForTeamGB? – would have been better served overlooking the ‘iconic’ red bus that, as it says in the Cool Britannia PR pack, speaks of the quintessential Britishness of Queen and country, and splashing their advert in OK! or Hello!, true icons of the age where celebrity confers respectability and authority.