Knights and dames forever

Jackson Harding writes: Re. “Nothing like a Dame!” (yesterday). Once again Crikey and the rest of the Australian media have got it wrong.  The latest Letters Patent regarding Knight/Dame of the Order of Australia have not “abolished” them.  Instead all that they do is close further appointments to this rank of the Order.  All the existing Knights and Dames remain Knights and Dames, and the rank itself remains extant.

And it doesn’t abolish knighthoods/damehoods in  Australia either. Australians can still be made a Knight/Lady of the Garter, Knight/Lady of the Order of the Thistle, or a Knight/Dame of the Royal Victorian Order.  These three orders are the personal gift of the Sovereign and anyone in any of her realms can be appointed to them (and yes there are some Australians among their number right now), and you’ll find them listed in the Australian Order of Precedence.  The Order of St Patrick is also remains technically in  existence, but all it’s members are now deceased and no one has been appointed to it since Irish independence.  It also is the personal gift of the Sovereign. The only way to rid ourselves of these accoutrements of royalty is to become a republic.  Even then I guess the existing knights and dames would remain until they shuffled off this mortal coil.

Bob’s Day in court

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David Hand writes: Re. “Poll Bludger: Day’s High Court challenge to Senate voting reform hampered by history” (yesterday). He can’t possibly win this. “Directly chosen by the people” applies more appropriately to the new system than it does to the old one where the people handed proxies to back room preference whisperers.

As a Crikey subscriber and someone who began working as a journalist in 1957, I am passionate about the importance of independent media like Crikey. I met a lot of Australians from many walks of life during my career and did my best to share their stories honestly and fairly with their fellow citizens.

And I never forgot how important it is to hold politicians to account. Crikey does that – something that is more important now than ever before in Australia.

North Stradbroke Island, QLD

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