The British monarchy is still able to capture the public's attention.
The Diamond Jubilee celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II were held recently in the U.K. Festivities were held across Canada, and even around the world, in conjunction with the British bash.
There's no doubt that a 60-year reign is an incredible accomplishment. Queen Elizabeth II has proven to be a very popular monarch who has conducted herself with class and dignity. Even though she's 89 years old, Elizabeth II remains in fine health.
(There must be something about the water at Buckingham Palace. The Queen Mother lived until she was 101).
I also known that there's a litany of better things to do on a June morning in Canada than to watch the televised ceremonies honouring Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee.
This is not intended to fuel the debate on whether Canada still needs the monarchy. That's a very heated, passionate discussion for another column. But I often wonder why we are captivated by the British royal family.
Remember last year, when Prince William wedded Kate Middleton? We were force-fed all sorts of stories about the wedding: what they would be wearing, who would be in attendance, and what would be served. It was a celebration of decadence and over-inflated spending; money that could have been directed to far greater uses.
Thankfully, the wedding aired in North America during the middle of the night, so we didn't have to worry about it pre-empting more important programs during the day. Most major networks in Canada and the U.S. carried the nuptials live.
And then there was their tour of Canada, which was there first official visit to another country since their wedding. Seemingly every movement was well-documented.
If a monarch comes to Canada, that's understandably noteworthy. It doesn't have to be as elaborate as Will and Kate's Canadian journey, but people should care about Prince Charles and Lady Camilla's recent travels in Saskatchewan.
When the Diamond Jubilee medals are handed out, that's very newsworthy. The people who will receive those medals are all very deserving, regardless of whether they're protective services personnel, dedicated members of the community or young people making a difference.
If there was a Diamond Jubilee event in a community, then it's deserving of a story.
But did we really need several days of extensive coverage of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations? And did Canadian television stations really need to dedicate that much programming to all of the different activities?
There had to be something more deserving of air time, or a bigger story than some of the lesser events associated with the Diamond Jubilee.
But in a celebrity-obsessed society, the extensive coverage supplied to the Royal Family shouldn't be a surprise.