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"While many of us may admire Her Majesty, none of us should be required to honour her"
Dr Brian Edwards writes in the National Business Review on the Speakers' Prayer, currently under consideration again with parliament's review of its Standing Orders, the rules which govern the way parliament operates. If you've ever seen Parliament TV at the start of the parliamentary day (2pm, channel 22 on Freeview and 86 on Sky) you would've heard a fairly odd prayer read out by the Speaker while MPs mill around. It wouldn't look quite as farcical if they actually took it seriously.
Religious issues aside (and we take no position on them) the prayer itself invokes MPs to "honour" the Queen. As Dr Brian points out, there are plenty of New Zealanders who might admire the Queen. But requiring MPs to "honour" the Queen as head of State is a step too far. We certainly wouldn't expect a New Zealand head of State to have such a requirement, nor should we accept it under the status quo.