It is easy to forget that the nobility serve a purpose in a small town such as ours, but the ideal behind them is an important one and one that connects us to the Throne of God of which we are all a part.
In any community, it is an extremely difficult task to keep track of and respond swiftly and appropriately to all matters of health, safety and social welfare that may come up. Emergencies can and do happen. Threats to the survival of the community such as famine, plague, violent enemies, and rampant crime are disastrous if not planned for seasons or years in advance. The situation only becomes more complicated when a community is large enough to host myriad traditions and opinions that may interfere with swift action.
The answer that the Throne and God have presented for dealing with these grave issues are the noble caste that governs us. While individual nobles and even entire families can stray from the perfect path laid for them, and these corruptions are important to address, the true purpose of the noble is still one that is holy and important.
In a perfect order, nobility would be educated from birth in every unique trade, culture, tradition, and social class that they must serve, and furthermore must learn how all of these various groups fit together and how they can be guided to work together better. While not every noble is a smith, they must learn what is needed to make their smithies operate, what materials are needed to keep them working and prospering, and how many smithies are useful and supported by their community. They must know what their mines produce and why and which veins of ore are needed by their smiths. They must know the markets for which the smiths work and whether swords or plows are needed for the next season. And so on for farming and field rotations, for the tides of nearby conflicts and banditry that may require soldiers or other protections, for the disposition of nearby markets where surplus goods may be traded for needed wares in short supply locally. And complicating each of these issues are the personalities and beliefs of each of these people- for they are people. Individuals with needs and holy purpose to experience the world and add their meaning to God. The good noble must know them and meet them and hear their troubles and help them through.
The list goes on and boggles the mind. And it is for this reason that the structure of nobility is ultimately based upon lineage. Children must learn from birth and be immersed deeply in the needs of their people and the ones most competent to teach them are their parents, who learned from their parents and their own experiences and so on back to the establishment of their House. It is also for this reason that new noble houses are carefully raised from the ranks of knights and other worthies who work closely with the nobles they are sworn to, who can educate and coach and support them during their first generation of service when they do not have a great legacy to teach them.
Some among our fair community think that perhaps a gathering of our elders could replace the necessity of a noble family, but I must gently disagree. Rule by committee, or “democracy” as it has been termed in the south, has myriad flaws that are much harder to correct. Each representative only is educated in what their family knows best. They lack the intense tutelage of the noble houses. Furthermore, rule by committee leads to lengthy debate and slow responses where rapid response to emergent issues is needed. We need only look to our religious gatherings of late to see that when presented with even simple issues we have as many opinions as we have people.
I cannot speak to the competence of Lord Ambrose, personally. I cannot say that he is suited to the position because we have evidence to the contrary, but I can say that we should trust in those others of the nobility that have been delivered to us by the grace of God, and support and teach them when we can to fill in the gaps of what they know. Perhaps we do not have someone who knows every one of our issues, but I do know with certainty that these people have a greater foundation than you or I on the difficulties of rulership. And it is the humble and righteous thing to do to help them however we can.