Thursday, December 08, 2005
I usually relegate news like this to my Japanese news feed (see top left or bottom of this page), but the discussion going on in Japan at the moment about whether to allow a female monarch is interesting. Female monarchs are not a novelty here. There were a number of female emperors before Japan was "modernised" but ever since the American occupation there has been a law limiting the line to men only. Now, with no male heirs available, the Government is preparing to legislate to allow women to ascend the throne.
What I find interesting is this： it seems that the Prime Minister's preferred option may be a simple system in which the first born child will become monarch. The Government commission set up to investigate the problem has recommended that option. In other words, there would be no male preference at all. That would mean that Japan's royal house would be way ahead of most of the rest of the world's monarchies in terms of gender equality.
Can't help feeling sorry for Princess Aiko though. Modern monarchy is a cruel and unusual punishment, a tyranny of the majority over an individual.
Posted by Nonjatta at 6:03 pm