Some misguided people in the ancestral homeland want to rename Big Ben in honor of a living monarch:
London's Big Ben clock tower is to be renamed Elizabeth Tower to mark the queen's 60th year on the British throne.
Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the name change. "The renaming of the Clock Tower to the Elizabeth Tower is a fitting recognition of the Queen's 60 years of service. This is an exceptional tribute to an exceptional monarch," he said.
Reactions among the public were mixed, however. "Big Ben is so old and iconic, what is the sense in changing its name? All over the world people won't understand what the Elizabeth Tower is," said Romanian tourist Mara Ciortescu.
Hear, hear, Miss Ciortescu. Her Majesty isn't some Emirati despot trying to make a name for herself by, for example, conditioning a huge "loan" on naming rights. She is Queen Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God Queen of this Realm and of Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith. She does not need a bell named after her.
I could make a snarky comment about how right-wing politicians often use some patriotic ruse to distract from their abject failure to solve real problems, but nothing comes to mind. Elizabeth Windsor didn't forge the damn bell; neither did Sir Benjamin Hall. The difference is, Sir Benjamin is dead; Queen Elizabeth is not. Naming things after living people, no matter how noble the person in question may be, is simply not done. The Cameron government should know that. I expect the sovereign would agree.