By Communist Party of Britain (CPB)
May 9, 2023
This weekend’s coronation was designed to maintain public support for an institution that embodies the gross inequalities, privilege and anti-democratic nature of our society.
Recognising that many people enjoy opportunities to gather together in response to appeals based on patriotism, tradition and ceremony, Britain’s ruling class and its mass media have done all in their power to promote this spectacle.
Dissenting voices have been all but silenced. As usual, the one daily paper – the Morning Star – that did not join in the royalist hysteria has been excluded from all media reviews of the daily press. Unsurprisingly, as an institution itself not known for a commitment to equality and democracy, the Metropolitan Police have arrested and detained women’s safety volunteers as well as peaceful protestors against the monarchy.
In some cases, people were arrested before they had done anything at all, in effect as though they had committed ‘thought crime’.
Trade unions should protest against this use of repressive legislation – which could be used against strikers and their supporters at any time – and demand its repeal by an incoming Labour government.
The coronation ceremony itself confirmed the close ties between the monarchy, the Anglican Church, the political establishment and Britain’s long and bloody history of militarism, conquest and plunder. The Communist Party refuses to celebrate a monarchy inseparable from its part in Britain’s record as a reactionary colonial and imperialist power.
In place of servile oaths to serve the head of an aristocratic family forevermore and pious phrases about ‘serving the nation’ and ‘helping the poor’, the Communist Party demands a massive transfer of wealth from the capitalist class to the working class.
In place of a mythical royal sovereignty based on bloodline, the Communist Party proposes popular sovereignty based on the people and their elected representatives in parliaments, governments and mass movements.
In place of a bogus national unity that conceals deep social, national and religious inequalities, the Communist Party fights for socialism and a federal, secular Britain in which England, Scotland and Wales enjoy equal status and people are free to practice their religion or no religion at all, with no privileged status for any one nation or faith.
An important step towards these aims would be the the abolition of all powers and institutions relating to the monarchy, including such posts as head of the Anglican Church and commander-in-chief of the armed forces, together with the royal prerogative, the Privy Council and other unaccountable offices of state.
The abolition of the monarchy itself, to be replaced by an elected head of state for ceremonial purposes, would complete a process that needs mass public support in order to succeed.
Important to winning such support would be a drive to reform, democratise and restructure the state apparatus, resulting in its transformation into one which serves the interests of the working class and people generally, rather than those of the big monopoly capitalists centred on the City of London. This is the revolutionary essence of socialism.
In the meantime, the Communist Party will continue to commemorate and celebrate with others the struggles of those who have fought exploitation and oppression in England, Scotland, Wales and beyond. That is why we urge people over the coming weeks to turn out in great numbers to the Chainmakers Festival, the Durham Miners Gala and the Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival.
-This article appeared in In Defense of Communism.