Prince Charles says he’ll tem­per his opin­ions if he be­comes king

The Peterborough Examiner - - Canada & World - PALKO KARASZ New York Times

LON­DON — Prince Charles has not been afraid to speak his mind on top­ics like his­tor­i­cal preser­va­tion, cli­mate change and al­ter­na­tive medicine. But as king, should that come to pass, it would be a very dif­fer­ent mat­ter, he ac­knowl­edged.

“I do re­al­ize that it is a sep­a­rate ex­er­cise be­ing sov­er­eign,” the prince said about his ac­tivism in a doc­u­men­tary, ex­pected to air on the BBC Thurs­day night, on the oc­ca­sion of his 70th birth­day next week.

“The idea, some­how, that I’m go­ing to go on in ex­actly the same way, if I have to suc­ceed, is com­plete non­sense be­cause the two sit­u­a­tions are com­pletely dif­fer­ent,” he said, re­fer­ring to the roles of heir and king.

The in­ter­view of­fers a rare glimpse of what Charles might be like as king, and is per­haps an ef­fort to as­suage crit­ics who have wor­ried that he would di­verge from Bri­tish monar­chs, who are bound by tra­di­tion to reign, not rule, over their sub­jects.

His mother, Queen El­iz­a­beth, now 92, was crowned in 1953, and is the longest-serv­ing Bri­tish monarch, hav­ing sur­passed Queen Vic­to­ria in 2015. She is queen of 15 other na­tions, in­clud­ing Canada.

Though many in the Bri­tish pub­lic — and around the world — fol­low the lives of the Royal Fam­ily closely, any strong per­sonal views that the Queen might hold have largely re­mained pri­vate in her nearly seven decades as sov­er­eign.

As king, Charles may face an­other hur­dle: his pop­u­lar­ity lags be­hind the queen’s and that of his sons, Wil­liam and Harry.

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