SEVERE WX : Heat Advisory View Alerts

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

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 48626

Reported Deaths: 2717
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11723689
Lake5212244
Elkhart332051
Allen2815132
St. Joseph198168
Cass16399
Hamilton1596101
Hendricks1414100
Johnson1288117
Porter73637
Tippecanoe7279
Madison66364
Clark66044
Bartholomew58944
Howard58057
LaPorte57926
Vanderburgh5706
Kosciusko5564
Marshall4926
Noble48428
Jackson4723
LaGrange4719
Delaware45050
Boone44943
Hancock44935
Shelby43025
Floyd38244
Morgan32931
Monroe30128
Montgomery29720
Grant29526
Clinton2892
Dubois2836
Henry28016
White26510
Decatur25532
Lawrence24625
Vigo2368
Dearborn23323
Warrick22129
Harrison21622
Greene19032
Miami1842
Jennings17612
Putnam1708
DeKalb1634
Scott1628
Daviess14717
Wayne1426
Orange13523
Perry1359
Steuben1302
Franklin1268
Ripley1227
Jasper1212
Wabash1132
Carroll1102
Fayette1017
Newton9910
Whitley965
Starke933
Gibson872
Randolph804
Huntington782
Wells751
Jefferson722
Fulton711
Jay680
Washington671
Pulaski661
Knox640
Clay604
Rush583
Adams501
Owen491
Benton480
Sullivan451
Posey440
Spencer411
Blackford392
Brown391
Crawford320
Fountain322
Tipton311
Switzerland270
Martin230
Parke230
Ohio170
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike110
Unassigned0193

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 58904

Reported Deaths: 2970
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin10587431
Cuyahoga8048379
Hamilton6158204
Lucas2788303
Marion273439
Pickaway220141
Summit2175207
Montgomery213431
Mahoning1849238
Butler163747
Columbiana130660
Stark1133113
Lorain105167
Trumbull97473
Warren88124
Clark7729
Delaware58815
Fairfield58516
Tuscarawas56810
Belmont55422
Medina53632
Lake50819
Licking49612
Miami47231
Portage44959
Ashtabula43644
Wood43651
Clermont4226
Geauga40843
Wayne36352
Richland3475
Allen32341
Mercer2879
Greene2769
Darke25326
Erie24622
Holmes2393
Huron2232
Madison1999
Ottawa15024
Sandusky13714
Crawford1365
Washington13520
Ross1303
Putnam12915
Coshocton1272
Hardin12312
Morrow1171
Auglaize1074
Jefferson912
Monroe8917
Union891
Muskingum861
Hancock791
Hocking788
Preble781
Guernsey743
Lawrence720
Williams722
Shelby694
Clinton680
Logan641
Athens631
Fulton620
Ashland601
Carroll593
Wyandot595
Brown581
Knox521
Defiance513
Fayette460
Highland451
Scioto450
Champaign411
Van Wert380
Perry351
Seneca342
Henry300
Paulding260
Adams241
Jackson240
Pike240
Vinton222
Gallia181
Harrison121
Meigs120
Morgan110
Noble110
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Angola
Few Clouds
70° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 70°
Huntington
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 73°
Decatur
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 72°
Van Wert
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 72°
Hot with storms Thursday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events