The Queen is not isolating during the coronavirus pandemic: reckless or stoic?

Royal visit to MI5

The Windsors have always been known as a cold, dull bunch, but it worked in their favor during World War II and they’ve been coasting on that ever since. I’m only half-joking. WWII was when Queen Elizabeth’s father, King George VI, kept calm and carried on even as Buckingham Palace and all of London was being bombed by the Nazis on a daily basis. He gave speeches and boosted morale within the country and beyond, becoming a powerful symbol of resistance. This, people argue, is why the royals get paid. They get paid to simply show up and sit there and shake hands and be “symbolic” of the larger keeping-calm-and-carrying-on thing.

But the current coronavirus pandemic is not WWII or the Battle of Britain or something which involves simply sitting there and shaking hands. After insisting for days that the Queen and Prince Charles would keep their public schedules – schedules which involved local and international tours – last Friday, those tours and events were finally cancelled or postponed. Then came the story about how the Queen had been sent to Windsor Castle to self-isolate during the pandemic. It would have sounded completely reasonable to me – the Queen is nearly 94 years old and she obviously has a greater risk if she is exposed to the virus. But now the courtiers are insisting that the Queen merely spent the weekend at Windsor Castle, and she’s returning to London.

The Queen attended church at Windsor Castle yesterday and will return to Buckingham Palace today to carry on her duties in defiance of the coronavirus epidemic. The 93-year-old monarch spent the weekend as normal at Windsor Castle but is expected to return to London as early as today to continue with her programme of meetings and audiences as head of state.

One senior aide, categorically denying reports that the Queen had quit Buckingham Palace over coronavirus fears, told the Mail last night: ‘I fully expect the royal standard will be flying at Buckingham Palace tomorrow as it does usually.’

Palace officials were irritated by a newspaper report which claimed the Queen had ‘quit’ her official royal residence and been ‘whisked’ to Windsor Castle. It quoted a ‘royal source’ saying: ‘She is in good health but it was thought best to move her. A lot of her staff are a bit panicky over coronavirus. The Palace hosts a constant stream of visitors, including politicians and dignitaries from around the world. But she is weeks away from her 94th birthday and advisers believe it is best to get her out of harm’s way.’

[From The Daily Mail]

The Queen believes that she’s simply keeping calm and carrying on in a crisis, like her father did during WWII. The problem is that she’s behaving recklessly and providing a terrible example for the British people, and she’s also endangering the lives of her staff – if she has to keep a schedule at BP, that means her entire staff has to be there too. Bad news.

Also, Britain is suffering from the same problem as America: absolutely horrendous political leadership. #WhereIsBoris was trending on Twitter throughout the weekend because Boris Johnson hasn’t taken any of this seriously.

Commonwealth Day Service -  Monday 9 March  -  Westminster Abbey, London

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red.

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84 Responses to “The Queen is not isolating during the coronavirus pandemic: reckless or stoic?”

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  1. ChillyWilly says:

    Not a great way to set an example for her “people”. Lots of people will take this as an excuse to not self isolate themselves.

    • (TheOG) jan90067 says:

      Just look no further than the Tindalls, who went on a skiing trip to that place in Italy that was hardest hit. They put out that they REFUSED to self-isolate upon returning home, and then hit the races with Autumn Phillips and scores of others. The arrogance astounds. Truly.

    • lemonylips says:

      agree, but when you think about it, she’s spent a life isolated from real life, so it makes no difference to her.

    • Emilia says:

      Honestly, considering how many ancient ppl seem to be flouting the suggestions or minimizing it…it’s kind of like they want to die, & don’t care if others die.

      It really seems like it. I’m talking like 85 & above. My parents are 70 & they’re taking this extremely seriously as an I. I currently live w/them (I’m 25, so expensive here in the Bay Area) & I am more than glad to be their ‘concierge’ during this time where the governor is requesting all ppl over 60 – not 65, they’ve lowered it to 60 – stay home until further notice. Mayor of SF announced all Bay Area counties must shelter in place by midnight tonight & only venture out of the house for only essentials.

      I never thought I’d say this but…this makes 9/11 look small in comparison. The horror/tragedy witness on the day live broadcast over & over will never be matched. But this? This is worse. They say 1.5 million people will likely die in the US. We have under 80,000 ventilators…w/a population of 309 million….

      We will survive though. We will be stronger for it. I love you guys & stay safe ❤️

  2. Hope says:

    Reckless. This is a wealthy person who thinks rules don’t apply to her.

    Set an example and stay home.

    • Astrid says:

      Same as Trump and Mar-A-Lago last weekend. Several guests are now sick with the virus

    • bluemoonhorse says:

      Viruses don’t care about your money. This will be a great leveler of society. But some are still to privileged and dumb to figure this out.

      • Nikki* says:

        But the rich have access to the most expensive face masks, they can hire private nurses if they get sick, and they don’t have the added stress of wondering how they’ll pay rent if they miss work. The Queen’s medical care would be topnotch, unlike any other 94 year old in a pandemic, who basic triage would relegate to least care.

      • stephka says:

        Nikki, you are so right. That really upsets me, that if someone like Trump or Boris Johnson gets this through recklessness, they’ll have topnotch care while others who follow their terrible example, will not.

      • bluemoonhorse says:

        Face masks don’t work. Also rich people are stupid people. Queen gets pneumonia again? No matter her money buying health care she will be dead. Are you not reading about how this progresses? and being viral, antibiotics don’t work.

      • stephka says:

        I’m not thinking about face masks and no one mentioned antibiotics. I’m thinking that these people will be given access to ventilators first, before those who are not high-profile.

      • bluemoonhorse says:

        @stephka I watched someone die who was hooked up to a ventilator. So yeah, money ain’t going to help these people.

    • ennie says:

      In my country, a relative of one of the wealthiest men in the world is sick with COVID-19 after he came back from a ski trip to Vail, he is gravelly ill, as he is in the highest risk group.
      The man who runs the national stock exchange is also ill (one year younger than the other one). They traveled in the same airplane back home. They arrived back last March 8th the most ill was showing some cold symptoms, and three days later, after seeing that he was worse, he was hospitalized. Press was running wild after finding out, probably from someone related to him that he was so ill that they presumed him dead, This men belong to the upper upper businessmen crust in my country.
      This is no joke.

      @nikki, I recala reading somewhere that resources were going to be held back somehow for people who are older, in favor those younger and more productive ones. I think that in my country, which offers public health services that happens. In the case of Cancer, some people cannot withstand the treatments, but it is more than that.

      • bluemoonhorse says:

        Yep. Once you get this, money isn’t going to buy non-existent miracles for recovery.

  3. Nikki says:

    Stupid, and you know she’ll get top health care priority despite being 94. No lying on a gurney in the hallway for Miz Liz.

    • stephka says:

      Yes, and I’m sure all the equipment Donald Trump could possibly need is already INSIDE the White House.

    • Kate says:

      Yeah although it doesn’t seem like top health care is enough to save older people if they get it, more like just enough to give them a fighting chance.

      The BRF just keeps proving how irrelevant and harmful they are.

  4. Desdemona says:

    Portugal – partial lockdown, schools and universities closed, many serrvices through the internet, etc… Considering the measures or lack of measures by the government (Boris Johnson) many British aren’t taking this seriously enough starting with the Queen and ending in the PM.What could possibly go wrong…?
    I’m a teacher and on FB many people (other teachers from other countries are telling their experiences)… I’ve cried reading about them, and the numbers in my country are increasing rapidly… I’m terrified to be honest..

    • (TheOG) jan90067 says:

      My friend, who lives outside Marbella, sent me a vid he shot from his terrace, of people who refused to self-isolate being stopped by police on the street.

      This has to be stressed, by those at the top: the is NOT a drill people. Take it seriously!

      • Desdemona says:

        Well, they can always arrest them and put them in isolation in prison… I’ve seen videos too… It’s definitely serious… One of the teachers from Italy wrote the following: “Italy, Lombardy, Alzano Lombardo…schools closed since fEBRUARY, ALMOST A MONTH now..Ambulances all day long, people dying every day. we don ‘t go out, I hear bells for the dead from the nearby church.It ‘s the village in Lombardy with the highest rate of deaths”

        So, playing with people’s lives like Boris Johnson is doing or the idiot queen pretending life goes on, just…I just can’t…

  5. Nev says:

    She seems like someone who you can’t say anything to anyways.

  6. MeghanNotMarkle says:

    This is just reckless on her part. But she’s anointed by God and probably figures she’s safe. *snort*

  7. girl_ninja says:

    This woman continues to show that she make foolish decisions. This is one of them. Awful.

  8. Ali says:

    Well I guess we will be getting a new Queen Consort in 2020.

  9. TheOtherOne says:

    If you have the means and resources to be informed and keep yourself safe and CHOOSE to do otherwise – you are a reckless, idiot. I hope she gets it.

  10. S808 says:

    Well….whatever happens happens I guess lol!

  11. Jess says:

    The best things leaders can do right now is social distancing. That’s showing people how to get through this pandemic. I guess it’s comforting (maybe?) to know that idiot politicians and leaders aren’t just an American problem.

    • Desdemona says:

      Our president, after contacting people who were infected, took the test, it was negative, still he decided to do the quarantine of 14 days while teleworking…

  12. bluemoonhorse says:

    I’m guessing dead within the year? That’s the grim reality of her age group and considering how severe that pneumonia was to her body a few years back, this shows she’s a fool.

    • A says:

      It’s something like 5% of cases over 70 wind up being fatal, and 15% of cases over 80. The Queen is 94. The cavalier attitude is shocking and depressing tbh.

      • bluemoonhorse says:

        Yes my MIL is 84 and had chemo last year. Thankfully, she is taking this seriously and is on lockdown because she has a history of not listening to medical advice. Queen’s money isn’t going to “save her.” The Grim Reaper is looking at his watch with her.

  13. lizzieb says:

    The queen and famille really are completely tone deaf. She went to church on Sunday. Small mercy is at least she didn’t bring Andy, But that means the church had to conduct a service, putting others at risk. And if TQ gets sick she will probably get an entire hospital wing with many doctors dedicated only to her at a time when they are already overwhelmed. I guess it’s ok with her that peasants will die as long as their taxes are paid so she gets her money. Can this family be replaced? How about it UK? It’s been done before. Can we send them to one of their properties to be farmers and get a better crew?

    • Desdemona says:

      Masses were forbidden in my country (it’s gathering of people, to dangerous, Bishops’ and Cardinals’ orders)…. You want a mass, there are televised masses on Sunday morning …

  14. Veronica S. says:

    Incredibly reckless. The United Kingdom is being unbelievably irresponsible in handling this crisis. They’re going to get hit hard in the next few weeks, I predict. Any of y’all watch Boris Johnson’s little infomercial about it? That shit was surreal. Like uncomfortably real life “Black Mirror” level nonsense.

  15. Honeybeeblues says:

    Hey Liz, hubris kills.

  16. Val says:

    Oh well, old girl’s time is up any way! Good riddance.

  17. Becklu says:

    Reckless!! And truly irresponsible

  18. Harper says:

    I’m worried about her, and Charles and Camilla actually. They may have already been exposed in any one of their meet and greets over the past few weeks. Now I’m off to take a screenshot of the story about Will’s insensitive jokes about coronavirus before it gets scrubbed from the internets if any of the elder Royals were to test positive.

  19. AprilMay says:

    The queens doing what her government is advising her (and everyone else) to do- to keep carrying on normally. They’re absolutely doing the wrong thing but they’re the ones in charge. Everyone else there has to get up and go to work and school why shouldn’t the royals. Yes her age should be causing concern but clearly no ones overpowering what he’s saying.

  20. Case says:

    Reckless. Everyone needs to work together to social distance as much as possible. It sounds like the UK is doing a disappointingly bad job at handling this situation.

  21. Valiantly Varnished says:

    Dumb. And $hitty leadership considering she is supposed to set an example. But Im not surprised.

  22. Chelle says:

    I think a few things are going on:

    The first thing is that a lot of people are sort of late to the party where COVID-19 is concerned despite the fact that it has been reported in the news for perhaps a month now. However, people are beginning to panic–some for realistic reasons and for others because they are having a hard time quieting their on anxieties around this. Her people could be in the group that’s late to the party on this. We all saw how Prince William joked about it in Ireland.

    The second thing is that she probably had some things on her calendar and her team decided that despite her age the risk was still low enough for her to carry them out. They were already scheduled, so why cancel them. One thing they may have done (which I doubt) was made people wash their hands just prior to meeting with her in addition to taking their temperature. Before visitation was shut-down at my mom’s nursing home, we had to have our temperature taken before we were allowed entry.

    The third thing I think that’s going on is that she is associated with a wartime narrative. Part of that narrative was that she and her family were paragons of virtue, strength and stoicism. Keep quiet and carry on. I think both she and her people were trying to quietly play into that despite the circumstances being vastly different.

    Finally, QEII may be of the mindset that when it’s her time then it’s her time. God will take her when he wants her and the circumstances are immaterial. I hear a lot of people saying that as a part of their belief system, as part denial, and as a way to keep their on anxiety muted.

    • Nikki* says:

      But in the war, citizens had no control over whether bombs would be dropped on them, so for the Royal Family to cast their lot with the average Londoners instead of leaving for safety really was a brave choice. This is a completely different situation, where what we choose to do affects everyone else. We have a chance to limit the peak spread of this virus, so to ignore a wise course of action is NOT brave, but stupid, ill advised, and putting others at risk.

      • Chelle says:

        I agree with you. I thought I had stated that it’s a totally different situation.

      • Rita says:

        But didn’t some families send their children to the countryside? In any event, I had no idea England is being so backward. Depressing.

      • Nibbi says:

        @Rita I don’t see how still trying to spare their children makes a difference or is relevant here. They were stoic, not in DENIAL, about the danger, and who wouldn’t try to get their kid to safety even if they themselves weren’t safe? It wasn’t practical for the entire of city of London to leave & shelter elsewhere, but they could try to get the kids out at least.

    • Nibbi says:

      Yeah. The stoicism during the bombing, shown by staying put and setting their jaws, was admirable.

      Now, actually, I think *true* stoicism, ie, smart stoicism, is not denying reality and the advice of experts but setting their jaws and hunkering down and somewhat humbly setting the example. God knows they have enough storage space for some extra TP and crumpets.

  23. Pineapple says:

    Also … Leaders like Trump and Johnson are incompetent. They are incapable of taking intelligent advice from others, incapable of handling serious issues that require thought and planning. They are bozos.

  24. notasugarhere says:

    Multiple royals have already been exposed, tested, self-isolating. Felipe and Letizia were tested and isolated until it was shown Letizia hadn’t been exposed. Harald and Sonja are self-isolating for two weeks after their visit to Jordan. W-A and Maxima still went on their tour, with some changes with no handshaking, distancing. Queen Margrethe has cancelled her birthday events, the CP couple returned three weeks early from their Switzerland stay.

    QEII is making bad decisions, which she’s done for years now.

    • Desdemona says:

      The Portuguese President self-isolated in spite of testing negative, just to show people how it’s done. He’s teleworking.

  25. lucy2 says:

    Reckless.
    She doesn’t have to sit in a bunker alone, but she should be greatly reducing her activities, practicing social distancing, and not forcing her staff to run around like usual.

    I’m concerned about the lack of plans the UK seems to have. I love the UK a lot, traveled around England and Scotland this summer…and came home with a very bad cold. It’s so easy to pick stuff up when you’re in a city, using public transport, etc.

  26. Mika says:

    Honestly… what is going on in the U.K? I feel like we’ve heard more from our PM on the crisis and he is LITERALLY IN ISOLATION.

  27. Thea says:

    Well the whole UK leadership is handling Covid-19 poorly. They don’t want people to social-distance because they want young people to get it and develop a herd immunity. Bojo is dumb dumb like trump. But at least here we have governors, mayors, and even business owners that are responsible. LA and NYC are basically shut down – no restaurants (take out is fine), movie theaters, gyms, bars, clubs, schools, etc starting today for LA and tmw for NYC.

    • Nikki* says:

      Im in NC, and I’m mystified why schools, libraries, and many workplaces are shut down, but bars and restaurants still aren’t, unlesss they cater to more than 100 people!! SO DUMB!!

      • lucy2 says:

        It’s coming – they just did that in my state today, closing restaurants and bars, and instituting a statewide curfew, because irresponsible people weren’t listening. They even, GASP, closed the casinos.

        The whole numbers thing made no sense to me, First it was 2500, then 1000, then 500, then 100, then 25. You have 25 people gather and ONE of them is sick, and boom, you’re growing exponentially again.

  28. (TheOG) jan90067 says:

    Here in LA we’re FINALLY shutting down: bars, clubs, wineries, restaurants (take out and delivery only), schools… I couldn’t believe seeing these idiots on the news at bars “celebrating St. Paddy’s”, over the weekend, all over the country! Crowding up next to each other…fools.

    ETA: NY, NJ, CT Tri-state area is closing all down now, too.

  29. Suz says:

    Reckless. This isn’t the war when going out in public was an act of defiance. This isn’t Keep Calm and Carry On. This is Keep Calm and Stay Home. Defiance will only end up killing people in this scenario. Given her age and the health and age of her husband, this is incredibly stupid.

  30. Le4Frimaire says:

    Are they trying to speed up the succession or something? Dickie Arbiter was at it again complaining about Queen and the Cornwalls to isolate. Like what is wrong with people over there. Cases are doubling overnight so it’s reckless to keep calm and carry on like there is no pandemic.

  31. Sofia says:

    Idiot.

    Wouldn’t be surprised then if we get a new Monarch in a year

  32. Andrew’s Nemesis says:

    I couldn’t care less about what happens to this atrocious old enabler; merely worry about those who might recklessly emulate her, without the safety net that untold riches bring her.
    In the UK we’re indoctrinated – admittedly less nowadays – from a very early age in the belief that the Queen is the epitome of dignity, decorum, duty and moral worth. It doesn’t matter what background or class you’re from – working, lower middle, upper middle in my case: the forelock tugging is as automatic as genuflection for a Catholic. Some of us grow up and refuse to bend a knee to someone who lives off the state (and ironically, those who gurn about ‘benefit scroungers’ are often the monarchy’s most ardent supporters). Most, however, remain blind and hopelessly infantilised throughout their lives. They will never accept that she is a racist, married to a racist, who has behaved disgracefully to a woman of colour. Who trots out her abusive, grooming, rapist of trafficked girls son on as many occasions as she sees fit. Who enables William’s noxious sense of entitlement and fails to clamp down on his and his sour little wife’s press games. Who conceals deeply immoral financial doings (Panama Papers, remember?), collections of glorious art that would benefit the nation, and only claims buildings of national heritage such as Windsor are the public’s when said public is paying to have them rebuilt.
    What saddens me most – breaks my heart, even – is that the day this monster dies will overshadow the grief of others. On that day hundreds of thousands will lose husbands, wives, children, parents, relations, friends: that day will only be remembered as the day the Queen died. She is not God. She is not special. She is not precious. Not particularly intelligent, amiable, friendly or giving. An anathema.
    So I don’t give a damn what she does or what happens to her. I care only for those she puts at risk or those who blindly follow her bad example.
    Thank you for letting me get this off my chest.

  33. Other Renee says:

    I was pretty shocked to see all the drunks falling all over themselves at the recent Cheltenham event. How was that even allowed to go on?

  34. Finny says:

    I can’t believe how people still can be this ignorant. We all see what has happened in China and what is happening in Europe right now. I’m originally from Germany but living in the US and I’m very worried about my dad. He is 86 has dementia and right now the shingles. I talked to my sister yesterday and she assured me that they take every precaution with him. I’m practicing social distancing right now. The leaders and the RF need to set the example and not dismiss this health threat. This is not the time to be reckless.

  35. DENNIS MOSEMAN says:

    Too much too do! No one can get near the queen without complete examination. Some of you are just too ready to bitch without knowing anything. MYOB!

  36. Florence says:

    Meh. She’s the (unelected) leader here, if we suffer she should suffer too. Go down with the ship that let you live in comfort all your life.

  37. February Pisces says:

    Oh gawd I bet it was Prince Charles whos been advising her to get out and shake as many hands as possible.

  38. aquarius64 says:

    I can’t believe this level of stupidity. I even wonder if any member of the royal family test positive would they tell the public? The backlash would be fierce if they knew they were positive and mingled in the public?

  39. A says:

    Haven’t you heard? Boris Johnson’s master plan is to allow for 60% of the country to get infected by the virus in order to create herd immunity. If there are people who have to die–the elderly, the immunocompromised, the working poor who can’t afford to take sick leave, etc, then that’s just a sacrifice everyone should be okay with making. I would not be surprised if BoJo and his posh OxBridge cronies are rubbing their hands together gleefully at this opportunity to kill off all the old and the infirm who they see as benefits scrounging wastes of space. It’s basically the sort of eugenics that people like Rees-Mogg and Patel and every other Thatcher-ite hellhound are wetting themselves over at the prospect of. No disrespect meant to hellhounds.

    Anyway, the Queen is definitely in danger because of her age. She’s 94 and has had several bad colds/flu bouts in the last few years that have rightfully frightened enough people (including the Cambridges) into spending time with her. She should take better care of her health, but she won’t, and the people around her won’t make her, because they all see these efforts as some type of fantastic liberal/leftist ploy to get everyone else down, and damn if they won’t get sick and die if it means they can stick it to the libs. I hope it’s worth ten million Keep Calm and Carry On posters.

  40. Estelle says:

    Reckless or stoic?

    Neither

    Darwinian.

  41. Jumpingthesnark says:

    Harry and Megan, hanging out in the living room at Vancouver Island, updating list of reasons why getting the hell out of the BRF was a good idea “#2673- They don’t believe that science applies to them”