Royalty

 

What is with our societal fascination with royalty?

Firstly, there’s the celebrity obsession.  If ever there was an original “famous for just being famous” status, it would be royalty.  You are born into it.  Even the Kardashian sisters are famous because their dad did something (and yes, infamy is a subset of fame itself).  But this fame is far removed from the origin of the act that made the family famous in the first place.  And, weirdly, it seems Americans are actually equally (if not more) obsessed with the all of the Royal Family drama as much as the Brits are.  The royals are also completely rely on taxpayers, which would anger me greatly were I not a Yank, but that’s not that different to me than the public supporting celebutantes by buying their brands of clothing or sex tapes or whatever else they have on the market.  But at least in the second scenario there is an element of choosing to support these people rather than it being a part of the political system.

Secondly, have you ever read about what the lives of these people are like?  They sound horrible.  Boarding schools and polo matches and constantly being in the spotlight–what child would ask for that?  It reminds me a bit of how a lot of upper-class families in the US are determined to jam-pack their kids’ schedules full of activities and hobbies hoping to better them.  Yes, I have been a recipient of the advice  “get a life” many a time, but there’s something excessive going on here.  When do kids get a chance to be kids?

Humans seem not only to have a natural desire to organize into hierarchies but to worship and build mythologies around them.  Perhaps it comes from a hope that one day we can all be as beautiful or successful or affluent as the people we obsess over.  Whatever the reason is, I think it’s the same one that inspires us to watch romantic comedies that have dramatic arcs that never get too intense and always end in a predictably positive fashion.  It is a lifestyle fantasy.  The funny thing about hierarchies, though, is that few of us win.  Most of us are in the lower levels, hoping for the best, thinking that if we try just a bit harder, make ourselves just a little more beautiful, then one day we may climb the ranks and look down upon the rest.

Why aren’t we attempting to make life better for more of us than desperately trying to be on the top?  Speaking out of pure selfishness, it seems it would be easier to carve a place for people between the highest level and the lower levels than to get to the top alone.  Will we ever be able to escape this dream of superiority and try to make things easier for the populace, or will we remain so blinded by the impossible dream of being the best that we will continue this struggle, this journey, until we die?

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