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Duchess of Cambridge gives birth to baby boy

The Duchess of Cambridge, wife of Britain's Prince William, has given birth to a son, the royal family announced.

Posted: Apr 24, 2018 8:56 AM
Updated: Apr 24, 2018 8:56 AM

The news that the Duchess of Cambridge has given birth to a third child won't just delight the happy parents. It will also please all British monarchists (of which I am one). The direct succession of the royal family is now thoroughly secured.

The rule of thumb for the monarchy -- and aristocratic families -- was to produce an heir and a spare.

That meant two sons traditionally -- although it is the case in the royal family that daughters of the monarch, or the heir apparent's oldest son (i.e Prince William), inherit ahead of their uncles, or their male cousins. So the new baby will automatically become fifth in line to the throne.

Republicanism has not been a very popular cause in Britain since the Civil War in the 17th century, when Charles I was executed and Oliver Cromwell ruled the country.

For the last 81 years -- ever since the abdication crisis of 1936, when Edward VIII gave up his throne to marry the American divorcée, Wallis Simpson -- getting rid of the monarchy has been a non-starter. Support for the royals is usually extremely strong whenever the public is polled.

The only other major crisis came in the aftermath of the death of Princess Diana -- which we were reminded of last week, as the country marked the 20th anniversary of that tragedy.

Then, support for the monarchy momentarily dipped, as some people -- wrongly, in my opinion -- thought the Queen hadn't behaved ideally in staying at Balmoral immediately after Diana's death; instead of rushing down to Buckingham Palace and lowering the palace flag in honor of the late princess. But support for the family soon returned.

You might have thought the modern age would temper what might seem like an old-fashioned affection for the Queen. In fact, in the age of social media, news about the royal family is consumed more voraciously, and on an even wider scale.

Of course, if you look at it objectively, monarchy seems like a ludicrous system -- the idea that someone should inherit the right to rule over a nation. But, in fact, logically speaking, you can see why people are attracted to the concept.

No one under the age of 70 in the United Kingdom can remember anyone but the Queen being in charge. For 65 years, we have been bombarded with images, audio and video, not just of her as Queen, but also of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren -- and the deaths of her daughter-in-law, her sister and her mother.

Of course, some people understandably react against that massive coverage. But most of the rest of us absorb it, and the royal family becomes the universal background to our lives. They are a huge part of our mental furniture -- meaning that a big proportion of the British population actually dream about the Queen.

Compare her to someone like Mick Jagger, who has been around for almost as long. A huge star since the early 60s, admittedly -- but do you know the name of any of his first cousins or his grandchildren?

Imagine the power and prestige an American president holds -- and imagine that president holding not just one term, but more than 16. When the Queen came to the throne, Harry Truman was president.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's new son will have similar wall-to-wall coverage as he grows up -- and most of us will develop a similar attachment to him as he matures.

The new arrival will also provide the family with another top-tier royal. In recent years, the royal family's advisers have been promoting a slimmed-down family, which relies on the Queen, Prince Philip, Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, Princes William and Harry, and the Duchess of Cambridge.

In time, that core group will encompass increased appearances by Prince George, Princess Charlotte and the new arrival.

Slowly, the other members of the royal family will become increasingly marginalized. Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie -- the daughters of Prince Andrew -- have been struggling to find royal roles in recent years.

This new arrival will not help their cause much, but he or she will massively boost the cause of the monarchy.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly described Prince Andrew as Queen Elizabeth's youngest son.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 665285

Reported Deaths: 12697
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion910581653
Lake48637887
Allen36050641
Hamilton32231398
St. Joseph30243514
Elkhart25484420
Vanderburgh21315382
Tippecanoe20185205
Johnson16425361
Porter16053276
Hendricks15899301
Clark12032182
Madison11779321
Vigo11672231
Monroe10394164
Delaware9879179
LaPorte9821198
Howard9095199
Kosciusko8588111
Bartholomew7504147
Warrick7445153
Hancock7439134
Floyd7255172
Wayne6654192
Grant6453157
Boone611991
Morgan6118126
Dubois5933112
Dearborn550669
Cass5477100
Marshall5446105
Henry542695
Noble510978
Jackson465567
Shelby462591
Lawrence4193113
Gibson404985
Harrison402764
Clinton397053
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Knox357885
Miami357863
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Perry173836
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Martin80314
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Switzerland7558
Union67510
Ohio54111
Unassigned0434

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 976230

Reported Deaths: 17501
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1127971251
Cuyahoga966701881
Hamilton737981067
Montgomery47453923
Summit40562831
Butler35750531
Lucas35685720
Stark29548826
Warren22539275
Lorain22149424
Mahoning19556551
Lake18509332
Clermont18484205
Delaware16576121
Licking15063194
Fairfield14622188
Trumbull14397424
Greene13636221
Medina13484237
Clark12352256
Wood11633170
Portage11104172
Allen10815216
Richland10360188
Miami10055194
Muskingum8224117
Columbiana8165210
Pickaway8085111
Tuscarawas8065232
Marion8015127
Wayne7915199
Erie6948146
Ross6170132
Geauga6105142
Hancock6021121
Ashtabula5998154
Scioto599188
Lawrence527186
Union515641
Darke5046116
Belmont4990137
Huron4848108
Jefferson4831137
Sandusky4791112
Washington473696
Seneca4720111
Athens465849
Mercer459181
Auglaize456682
Shelby442579
Knox4053105
Putnam400393
Madison394755
Fulton382561
Ashland381983
Brown374352
Defiance373588
Crawford359598
Logan356973
Preble353887
Clinton342055
Highland328451
Ottawa325171
Williams303268
Jackson291246
Champaign290149
Guernsey288745
Perry270748
Fayette269843
Morrow261137
Henry247361
Hardin246859
Holmes244097
Coshocton240056
Van Wert230257
Gallia223538
Adams218139
Pike216728
Wyandot212050
Hocking194954
Carroll181743
Paulding160834
Meigs136031
Noble129233
Monroe117137
Morgan101620
Harrison100731
Vinton76613
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