Drag legend Rupaul and his Drag Race franchise have come under fire after Canada's Drag Race posted and then swiftly deleted a poorly-timed tweet in the wake of the death of Queen Elizabeth II, who died September 8 at the age of 96, ending her 70-year reign as Britain's longest reigning monarch.
Hours before Buckingham Palace announced the Queen was under medical supervision at Balmoral Castle after doctors expressed concern, the Twitter account for Canada's Drag Race posted a tweet with the caption:
“This crown is up for grabs… who is going to take it home???”
You can see the tweet for yourself below.
The tweet was likely to have been scheduled well before Buckingham Palace's official announcement—there is certainly no indication anyone knew of the Queen's condition before the London royal residence and administrative headquarters for the monarch made it—but the response was swift.
The since-deleted tweet quickly went viral and just about everyone had something to say about its poor timing.
Queen Elizabeth died just months after her Platinum Jubilee, which celebrated her 70 years on the throne. The news of her passing came just two days after meeting Liz Truss, who won the 2022 Conservative Party leadership election, becoming the United Kingdom's newest Prime Minister after Boris Johnson resigned amid a government crisis.
The Queen, long known and respected for her stateliness and vigor, saw her health sharply decline after her husband, the late Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, died at the age of 99 in April 2021. The two had been married for 75 years.
The Queen's death comes as the U.K. grapples with an uncertain political future exacerbated by the political infighting at Downing Street, the continued fallout of the 2016 Brexit referendum, and the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, which have thrust the U.K.into the worst economic crisis it has faced in decades.
The Queen's son, Charles III, is now the King of the U.K. and the 14 Commonwealth realms since the death of his mother though his ascension has done little—if anything—to endear him to the British public. Questions about the future and relevance of the monarchy persist, particularly as none of the royals enjoy even a hint of the late Queen's popularity.
Support for the monarchy remained consistently high under Elizabeth's reign but has noticeably faltered over the last decade in the wake of several high-profile controversies, most notably the sex trafficking and sexual assault allegations against Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, who has thus far failed to distance himself from the crimes of deceased American financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein in the eyes of the British public.