Lidia Thorpe, an Indigenous person who was elected to the Australian senate as a member of the Green party, added the word ‘colonizing’ before the words ‘Queen Elizabeth II’ while taking the oath of office. The presiding officer stopped her and said that she should only read the words on the card, which she then did, while making clear with her intonation and facial expressions that she found it offensive.
Thorpe turned to speak to a Labor senator behind her who appeared to voice further criticism, before repeating the oath as printed.
Another senator was heard to say “none of us like it”.
The assistant minister for the republic, Matt Thistlethwaite, last week told Nine newspapers that swearing allegiance to the Queen was “archaic and ridiculous”.
“It does not represent the Australia we live in and it’s further evidence of why we need to begin discussing becoming a republic with our own head of state,” he said. “We are no longer British.”
I was surprised that such an oath was still being administered. Apparently “under the Australian constitution all senators and MPs must swear an allegiance to the Queen and her heirs and successors before sitting in parliament.”
This should be embarrassing to the people of a sovereign nation to swear an oath of allegiance to a foreign queen and even to her heirs and successors. Does that include Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell’s good buddy Andrew as well? That alone should cause anyone to gag over the words.
Furthermore, it is not clear what an oath of allegiance to the queen means. Does it mean they must follow her orders? If the queen were to tell all the Australian legislators to vote in a particular way on some issue, must they do so? If not, what’s the point?
Maybe Thorpe’s action will raise enough awareness if how ridiculous this oath is and they will move to change it.