The British monarchy is an expensively maintained tourist attraction, chiefly composed of distant cousins who have married one another, the peasant daughter of a local party planner, and several large hats. Anyone could be the head of it. Queen Elizabeth II, a corgi wearing a monocle, London-born Mischa Barton. Anyone.
The King or Queen of England's job consists mostly of visiting hospitals, hosting parties, and giving Kate Middleton nervous poops.
Know who's great at all those things? Prince Harry.
Yes, Harry is "irresponsible," "a loose-cannon," and "a wild card" who "has red hair." But he is also fit for a king.
Just to get it all out in the open, here's a list of all the scandalous things Harry has done (on record):
Smoked Weed Err Day
One summer, 16-year-old Harry's father and brother left him alone at their country estate for two months, which they should have known not to do because that kid has a mischievous face. Harry regularly got smashed at a local pub and was seen smoking some marijuana like a cigarette—real cool guy—at private "after hours" parties, held at his family's estate.
St. James' palace did not deny the reports, and even confirmed that Harry had "experimented with [marijuana] on several occasions." A statement stressed this drug use was not "regular." (It was extraordinary.)
Punishment: Prince Charles took Harry to a rehab clinic and introduced him to recovering heroin and cocaine addicts, or, as Prince Harry probably saw them, valuable contacts who had good rapport with local dealers. He also phoned the headmaster of Harry's school, Eton College, and asked that Harry's weekend passes be limited. Luckily, Harry knew of a secret passageway under a statue in the third floor corridor that led straight to Honeydukes' cellar.
Gotten an F in Art
In 2003, an art teacher at Eton claimed that she had written five pages of text that were submitted as part of Harry's coursework journal and that another instructor had done work on a painting later presented as the prince's own. Harry said he had merely asked her to come up with what the BBC News called "'descriptive terms' to explain the link between his coursework and its inspiration." In other words: to explain the painting he didn't paint, and its relation to art history.
Punishment: Now everyone knows Harry is the kind of super stupid dum-dum who is forced to cheat at Art. (He was eventually "totally cleared" of cheating.)
Performed the Scuffle Shuffle with a Photographer
Punishment: Most people blamed the paparazzo. His dad probably asked him not to do it again. William probably tried to make a joke to lighten the mood and failed.
Been a Nazi
At age 20, Prince Harry thought a cool thing might be to go to a costume party dressed as a Nazi. The theme of the party was "Colonial and Native," so Harry wasn't even the right kind of offensive. Worst of all, his costume was a lazy, slipshod effort that basically consisted of khakis and a swastika armband, even though you know he has the money to go out and buy a high quality Nazi costume.
Punishment: For many people, Prince Harry's Nazi Costume Fantasy was the moment he went from "drunk Uncle Harry who is bawdy and fun" to "drunk Uncle Harry who offers to give you a backrub and then calls you an ‘ungrateful slut bitch' when you decline." It upset pretty much everyone. The palace issued a statement apologizing on the Prince's behalf.
Been a Racist
In 2009, 3-year-old leaked video footage of Harry at the Sandhurst military academy showed the prince describing a Pakistani cadet as "our little Paki friend," and telling another officer that he looked "like a rag head." A few months later, a black comedian said Harry had told him he didn't "sound like a black chap" after the entertainer performed at Prince Charles' birthday.
Punishment: Everyone was mad at Harry again, including Army. St. James' Palace released an apology saying that Harry was "extremely sorry" for any offense and arguing that "Paki" was just a fun nickname. The statement also said "Prince Harry used the term 'raghead' to mean Taleban or Iraqi insurgent," which is a fact but not an apology. No one could ever confirm that the private conversation had taken place between Harry and his little Black friend, the comedian.
Rubbed His Royal Junk on Naked Girls in Vegas
The same weekend he signed an historic peace treaty with the People's Republic of Lochtenation, Prince Harry was photographed prancing around naked with (and bear hugging from behind) some random party gals in Las Vegas. Everyone figured Prince Harry was doing this stuff anyway, but no one can quite believe he allowed himself to be photographed.
Punishment: The palace is pissed. A spokesman for the royal family said "We have no comment to make at this time." Prince Harry was flown back to England in the middle of the night. His palms will hurt for days from all the high fives he will receive (from friends and strangers, but not his family).
Even With All Those Skeletons...
...doesn't he seem like the kind of fun guy you'd want as a figurehead?
Whom would you rather have visit you when you're ill? William, who will bring you a card "signed by everyone in the office" signed by half the people in the office, or Harry, who will make balloons for you out of latex gloves and dress up in scrubs and pretend he's a doctor so he can sit in on your surgery and "keep an eye on things" even though you've begged him not to?
Whom would you rather have attending diplomatic functions? William, whose nervous, quiet laughter echoes so hollowly in marble ballrooms, or Harry, who can cajole the heads of warring nations to arm wrestle just by yelling "This one's for the Facebook!"
In fact, once Harry's king, why not go ahead and give him absolute power? What's the worst he's gonna do? "SHOTS. It's the law." That's not even a sentence, Prince Harry. He'd probably retain the entire Parliament as a "panel of advisors," but every once in a while the entire United Kingdom would be treated to a mandatory "wear your pajamas to work day" courtesy of King Henry.
The appeal of Prince Harry is that, whether he's playing "strip pool" in Vegas, challenging Olympic gold medalists to swimming races in jeans, or making sex faces at William every time he stands behind Kate Middleton, he's just doing what any of us would do if we were a prince. Or Prince.
He's already King of the Kids. Now let's make him King of England.