Dei Gratia Regina?

Have you ever wondered what "D. G. Regina", next to the picture of the Queen, on the back of all Canadian coins means? In full, it stands for "Dei Gratia Regina", which, in Latin, means "By the grace of God, Queen".

In the United States, there has been a very interesting movement to have "under God" removed from the Pledge of Allegiance (this was an amendment and not in the original Pledge), to have "In God We Trust" removed from their coins, as well as other moves to rightfully and constitutionally separate church and state.

Here, in Canada, we have similar violations of this vital constitutional separation between church and state. Our national anthem, which is sung before every sports event, many schools, etc. invokes the protection of God over our land. This is all very interesting, unconstitutional, and insultingly stupid. However, it is the phrase "D. G. Regina" on the back of our coins to which I take the most exception.

Of course, the phrase is a throwback to an era in which the nobility ruled over states. Quite obviously, ridiculous positions such as the monarchy have no legitimate purpose or right to exist in (what should be) a modern republic like Canada. Even though we (mostly) live in a democracy, we do not vote for our monarch, but still we devote a significant amount of taxpayer dollars to this deprecated institution and all that it entails. While the Queen obviously has veto power in theory, her powers have been curtailed to mere symbolism for a long time (most of all since the repatriation of the constitution).

And while I take exception at the monarchy's relevance itself, it is this phrase D. G. Regina which offends my intellect most of all. On the back of all our coins, we are told that our monarch has literally been appointed by God to rule over this land. There is little which disgusts me more than such idiosyncratic pandering to the religious and political right-wing of this country.


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