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“He’s just like a noble lion that does not bite.”
March 29, 2013 11:02 AM   Subscribe

The last King of Rwanda, Kigeli V Ndahindurwa, lives on public assistance in low-income housing, at a dead end between US Route 66 and State Route 655 in Oakton, Virginia. 'He ruled Rwanda for just nine months in the 1960's before fleeing a revolt and has spent the last half century in exile, powerless to stop the violence that ripped through his country. He is 76 years old now, his tottering seven-foot-two-inch frame stooped by age and the vagaries of fate.'
posted by zarq (26 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

 
Monarchist League, a 70-year-old British group that campaigns for the preservation and restoration of kingdoms the world over

Why does this bug me so much?
posted by Melismata at 11:06 AM on March 29, 2013 [4 favorites]


Why does this bug me so much?

Because monarchy is bullshit?

Wasn't this guy ousted in coup/election? Does anyone have any good links about that?
posted by IvoShandor at 11:11 AM on March 29, 2013


Because you disapprove of monarchy?
posted by merelyglib at 11:12 AM on March 29, 2013


Probably for the same reason it bugs me to enter a certain London bookseller who has a framed letter bragging about His Highness the King of Portugal appointing them his official booksellers - after he was deposed. King mon cul as zazie would put it.

(British isles and the tradition of solidarity towards random humans who think they are your betters. Sheesh.)
posted by Marauding Ennui at 11:14 AM on March 29, 2013


Because no one goes back to a monarchy unless by force, and there aren't any great countries lead by a single ruler. It seems most countries move towards some form of democracy, effective or otherwise.

Or maybe it's because the look and sound like a bunch of stuffy white dudes.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:14 AM on March 29, 2013


I don't know why it bugs you so much, but my guess is that they do it through various combinations of a) disgruntlement with politics to the point that they feel that the top job may as well go to someone with no more qualification than their ancestry, b) that they believe that the job of head of state should be separated from that of head of government, and that republics which already do so don't do that much better of a job of selecting the former than mere genetics, and/or c) sheer silly-arsed romanticizing of the Age of Chivalry or some facsimile thereof.

Or just for fun; it still tickles me that Jamie Lee Curtis is also known as the Baroness Haden-Guest courtesy of her marriage to the erstwhile Nigel Tufnel. I think that the sale of titles to the highest bidder--often someone who would have some difficulty being invited to their own birthday party--is just about the greatest thing ever. Thus with this bit from the last page of this article:
The only people with real power or money Kigeli sees these days are those seeking knighthoods. In 1998, he revived the Order of the Lion, first granted by his late half-brother, King Mutara. More recently, Kigeli introduced a series of new orders—of the drum, the crown, and the crested crane, all icons in the royal coat of arms—when it became clear they might appeal to benefactors.

“We’ve seen donations anywhere from $1,000 to $8,000, but the average is $3,000 to $5,000,” says Alex Montague, a financial adviser in Miami who processes the requests as the king’s current secretary-general.
Buying a Knighthood of the Drum could become the next big thing for drummers of the flavor-of-the-month band.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:19 AM on March 29, 2013


a dead end between US Route 66 and State Route 655 in Oakton, Virginia.

66 forms the southern boundary and 665 the western boundary of Oakton. As 665 is north-south and 66 is east-west, how does one live "between" them? Incidentally, Oakton, sandwiched between Vienna and Chantilly, is sort of a dead end in itself.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:21 AM on March 29, 2013


Because no one goes back to a monarchy unless by force, and there aren't any great countries lead by a single ruler.

That's a woefully imprecise statement. There are a nontrivial number of countries where the head of state and head of government are the same person, which is the only reasonable interpretation I can come up with for 'le[a]d by a single ruler'--there are plenty of monarchies with elected governments, after all.

/pedantry
posted by hoyland at 11:24 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


And, of course, that's I-66, not US Route 66, which ran between Chicago and LA and now only exists in bits and pieces.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:25 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wasn't this guy ousted in coup/election? Does anyone have any good links about that?

According to the Wikipedia summary, the Hutu population were "encouraged by the Belgian military" and there was a coup, followed by a vote on the fate of the monarchy, and the rule of Kigeli V. Both lost, with almost 80% against both the monarchy and the king remaining the ruler.

Those short summaries don't really mention where Kigeli V stood between the Tutsi and Hutu.

And by "there aren't any great countries lead by a single ruler," I was poorly trying to reference countries that don't have a decent balance of power. But I will admit my knowledge of ruling systems of other nations is sorely lacking.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:26 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


And Andorra is a monarchy with co-princes! One of whom is the president of France, which maybe stretches the notion of monarchy a bit.
posted by hoyland at 11:27 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


One of whom is the president of France, which maybe stretches the notion of monarchy a bit.

Biarchy, Diarchy, tandemarchy, Dos Archies, Superarchy, Double archy (or just archy archy), dualarchy.
posted by IvoShandor at 11:31 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


King, eh?
posted by Parasite Unseen at 11:43 AM on March 29, 2013


British isles and the tradition of solidarity towards random humans who think they are your betters. Sheesh.
We were chopping king's heads off while you were just the fever dreams of some Plymouth sectarians, I'll have you know. Grrr.
posted by Abiezer at 11:46 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


In my capacity as King of Albania, I sympathize with King Kigeli. However, it's clear that the people of Rwanda want something different. I therefore urge him to consider naming me his heir, thus bringing Albania, Rwanda, and potentially Scotland into personal and dynastic union under myself and my heirs.

Kigeli, let me know.
posted by Flunkie at 11:51 AM on March 29, 2013


The 10th Regiment of Foot: " 66 forms the southern boundary and 665 the western boundary of Oakton. As 665 is north-south and 66 is east-west, how does one live "between" them? Incidentally, Oakton, sandwiched between Vienna and Chantilly, is sort of a dead end in itself."

655, not 665. 655 curves slightly where it meets 66 forming what looks like a tiny cul-de-sac on the map, and also runs parallel to 66 for a period of time in Oakton.
posted by zarq at 11:54 AM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


Follow Blake Lane (655) to the north side of 66 on this map. You'll see what I mean.
posted by zarq at 12:00 PM on March 29, 2013


Incidentally, Oakton, sandwiched between Vienna and Chantilly, is sort of a dead end in itself.

The hell you say. Oakton is boss! Despite the ludicrously oversized nouveau-riche palatial homes dotting up and down Hunter Mill, this place is pretty damn classy and has tons of excellent restaurants. Even the 'section 8 housing' mentioned in the article is pretty nice, all things considered. I mean it's not like we're talking about Herndon here or something. Damn.
posted by FatherDagon at 12:01 PM on March 29, 2013


The hell you say. Oakton is boss!

I went to high school there. Go Cougars!
posted by sweetkid at 12:02 PM on March 29, 2013


655, not 665

Damn these eyes!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:09 PM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


Whoever had created humanity had left in a major design flaw. It was its tendency to bend at the knees.
-- Terry Pratchett, Feet of Clay
posted by kmz at 12:12 PM on March 29, 2013 [4 favorites]


Heh. 10th, I spent a good couple of minutes going "damned journalists and their addiction to flowery prose!" before I noticed. :D
posted by zarq at 12:14 PM on March 29, 2013


Interesting story. He kind of reminds me of a royal Big Lebowski- "Fuck it, Benzinge- let's watch pro wrestling".
posted by Esteemed Offendi at 12:15 PM on March 29, 2013


Biarchy, Diarchy, tandemarchy, Dos Archies, Superarchy, Double archy (or just archy archy), dualarchy.

Malarkey?


It must be strange to have lived all your life knowing that you were born for one thing only, and never got to do the job. I wonder if he would have been a good king and would have assisted his country to advance. Who knows--as stated in the article, perhaps he was to gentle and this was not his time.
posted by BlueHorse at 9:52 PM on March 29, 2013


Why does this bug me so much?

Because you're a republican, a regrettable and aesthetically unpleasant position endemic to the United States among other benighted places.
posted by atrazine at 7:25 AM on March 30, 2013


hoyland: "And Andorra is a monarchy with co-princes! One of whom is the president of France, which maybe stretches the notion of monarchy a bit."

Just as weird that the other prince is the Bishop of Urgell. Not a lot of temporal power wielded by the church these days.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:02 PM on April 10, 2013


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