Service… The Queen’s Super-Powered Legacyat
The Queen will be remembered with affection by zillions of people, even those that err on the side of republicanism… she’s a blazing beacon to the beauty and power of service… in the right place at the right time.
The late and great Queen Elizabeth was born in an era when service was rewarded and appreciated, thanks to the corresponding efforts of trade unions and social reformers. She set out on her path to serve unequivocally as Queen in the early 1950s, and others resonated with her work ethic. It was an era when postmen weren’t paid much, but felt valued for their work – like nurses, doctors, plumbers and ambulance drivers. It seemed that people had a real sense of their own worth and role in service, even if the state was a touch mean. Then Margaret Thatcher came along, and said “anyone on a bus over the age of 25 is a failure” and the ethos of self-worth drifted away on the breeze, and was duly replaced by the ethics of greed. No wonder Queen Elizabeth disliked Thatcher so much. And yet Thatcher was addicted to service, self-service – like Trump and Boris Johnson – not service to the good of others. And there we have it… service… real service has to be for the benefit of others and at best done with love. And knowing this, many understandably loved our late Queen, and others respected her, which is similar in a way.
I once visited a nursing home with my MP – Caroline Lucas. A cheeky nurse looked Caroline in the eye, as if to challenge her and said “So why did you become an MP then?” to which Caroline replied almost dreamily – “I did it because I wanted to make a difference.”
And for your delight and mine… here are some great service quotes:
“Everyone can be great because everyone can serve…” – Martin Luther King
“The high destiny of the individual is to serve rather than to rule.” Albert Einstein
“Life is a place of service, and in that service one has to suffer a great deal that is hard to bear, but more often to experience a great deal of joy. But that joy can only be real if people look upon their life as a service, and have a definite object in life outside themselves and their personal happiness.” Leo Tolstoy