God save Leticia!, the Queen -consort- we never had

Doña Leticia, at a gala dinner at the Royal Palace. / MY WHAT

The fact that she has become – by combining modernity, tradition and pragmatism in her performance – the main supporter of the monarchical institution, favors the recasting of the aphorism, which will no doubt make it more fair: “I and the king”

Four years ago, the rectors of EL COMERCIO invited me – which supports their proven generosity, questioning, yes, their criteria – to reflect on the figure of Leonor de Borbon, at the time of her arrival in our region, coinciding with Asturias Day, participated in her first official act as a princess and, as a necessary consequence, heir to the throne of our country.

He then raised a series of questions that sought to get to the bottom of the ever-heated monarchy-republic debate: Are we staunch monarchists – or republicans – or are we just pragmatists? Are we talking about a way of organization of the head of state or an ideology? Is it acceptable that Helena de Borbon is not our monarch today, but her brother Felipe is? Is Leonor I an alternative or a necessary lesser evil compared to Pedro Sánchez, Alberto Nunes Feijoo, Yolanda Díaz, Santiago Abascal or Ines Arrimadas – that time passes quickly, Sic transit gloria mundi, is attested by those who in this priority, in At then Pablo Casado, Albert Rivera and Pablo Iglesias were included, remember them? – at the head of the head of state of our country? Will Spain then continue to be Spain? In addition, he continued to reflect on two features, fundamentally contradictory, that characterize the institution in our country today: modernity and tradition.

Questions and reflection that remain valid as Letizia, our current Queen, celebrates her fiftieth birthday this September 15. In the following lines, we will try to reflect, albeit briefly, on a figure that, as we have already said, we consider essential for the maintenance and strengthening of the monarchy in our country. And this, at least this is our intention, trying not to fall into a crude “presentism” – so inclined to ignore the always necessary historical analysis -, nor into the comfortable “beret” – Leticia’s connection with her, ours, Asturias is clearly – and especially in the bombastic “Toddyism” – overnight, without any shame, we are tempted to become the greatest experts on any topic or discipline, pontificating on the education system, the suitability of transfers made by Barcelona football club or, in the absence of this, the quality of the first cider of the year.

As then, we continue to argue that the present, and also the future, of the monarchy in the face of the growing instability of a society subject to the “empire of the ephemeral” will not be so much, regardless of what it might initially appear to be. , in republicanism and independence, and in knowing how to combine the two aforementioned traits – modernity and tradition, to which is added a third, pragmatism, which Leticia, not by chance and in no way contradictory, combines in her “professional” productivity.

For eight years – in June 2014, the abdication of Juan Carlos I in favor of his son Felipe made the queen consort – our hero has been, far above her husband, the main supporter of an institution, the monarchy, always questioned and much more so after the “terrible years” that ravaged, still do today, the royal family. Do you remember what they said about her when her engagement to the then Prince of Asturias was made official, not by a few prophets and clever “Toddists” masquerading as experts in the institution?

Modernity? Leticia Ortiz Rocasolano is, at least she was, a “plebeian” – the first non-royal wife of the king of Spain – a university graduate – she studied information science at the Complutense University of Madrid – independent – a journalist by profession with performances, before her marriage, on various television networks – and, something that is usually overlooked, divorced – after a civil marriage that ended in 1999 -. If that wasn’t enough, what’s more relevant than that in a country where the corrupt have roamed in considerable peace, your son-in-law has served a sentence or something in a homeland prison? Do you still have in your memory that didactic family discussion between the two royal wives – Leticia and her mother-in-law Sofia, worthy of the best after-dinner TV program, with which we all finally managed to understand the ultimate meaning of the word protocol? What can we say about your presence just a few weeks ago, together with your daughters, at the concerts of Harry Styles or Rosalia?

Tradition? Did you know that the King will receive a salary of €258,927 gross this year and the Queen €142,402? What would happen if our current monarchs decided to become parents for the third time and gave birth to a boy? Are we aware, Letizia undoubtedly is, of the conditions that the “fixed” constitutional text will impose on her eldest daughter Leonor, the future queen, by the time she decides to marry?

Pragmatism? Does the education and “screen” to which the ever-vigilant Letizia subjected her daughters clash with the new roles that women, including the Queen herself, have managed to conquer after years of struggle? In that sense, is there a greater lesson in pragmatism than that the mother of our future queen was, according to a deep-rooted “urban legend,” an ardent republican in her youth?

Years ago, the reviled honorary king, who had become too heavy a burden for the institution, repeated a phrase that, although it had little to do with reality, popular wisdom soon turned into a joke: “The Queen and I.” The fact that Leticia has become – by combining modernity, tradition and pragmatism in her performance – the main supporter of the monarchical institution encourages the transformation of the aphorism, which will undoubtedly make her more fair: “I and the king”.

Never has another non-Bourbon done more for the Bourbons. Having said all that, wouldn’t it be fair if the salary figures received by our monarchs were reversed? As an old monarchist would say, “God bless Leticia.” If one day the Third Republic arrives and they let it run, wouldn’t the current queen be the best candidate to preside over it? Given the possible alternatives, whoever signs it will vote without hesitation. As an old Republican would say, “Hello and Leticia.”

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