Sometimes little things may reveal ingrained attitudes.
Over the weekend the Moderator of the Church of Scotland responded to a letter to the Kirk by William, the prince AKA Earl of Strathearn. We learn from BBC News: ‘His Royal Highness was due to be Lord High Commissioner at this year’s General Assembly, before it had to be cancelled because of Covid-19.’
This is from the Moderator’s response: “The Church of Scotland is sorry not to be able to welcome him back to Scotland, where he went to university, but we appreciate him taking time to write to us and are grateful for his interest, concern and support.”
It’s the ‘welcome him back to Scotland, where he went to university’ bit that got me.
This is 2021, the man left university over 15 years ago! And it’s not as if it’s: ‘welcome him back to a remotely located Town/City where he went to university but, regrettably, hasn’t been able to revisit’. No, it’s ‘welcome him back to Scotland’ i.e. a major component part of the kingdom whose throne he is due to inherit – one of two kingdoms under his grandmother’s crown. Should the presence of the senior royals in Scotland not be as normal – as unremarkable – as their presence anywhere in the UK, and regardless of where in the UK they attended a university many years ago?
Now William will have been to Scotland a number of times over the years so my dig is not directed at him [Oh go on: Ed]. But in the wording of the response it’s almost as if we glimpse a mindset concerned with an imperial ruler who, in an gracious act for which we are grateful, had planned a rare visit to a far corner of the realm.
Ach, maybe it’s just me getting far too easily irked these days!