The prince harry I thought I was ready for the moment when the british press threw himself on his girlfriend, in 2016. But, according to what he told in Spare: In the Shadowhis autobiography that breaks sales records, “I had not foreseen this level of unlimited lies.” Even for the son of the Princess Diana —killed in a car accident while trying to escape from the paparazzi— the treatment that the Daily Mail either the sun gave to Meghan Markle it turned out surprising.
“First of all I had not prepared myself for the racism”, he revealed in the book that he makes explicit his differences with the King Charles IIIhis father, and his brother, the prince william. “Neither for the hidden racism, nor for the obvious, vulgar and spit in the face racism.”
The first discriminatory headline appeared in the Daily Mail: “Harry’s girlfriend has come (almost) straight out of Compton”. Near Los Angeles, the city of Compton is inhabited mainly by african american Y latinos. It is an area of low income and visible poverty, with a high crime rate associated with gangs. But also a talent town: sisters Venus and Serena Williams were born and raised there, as were rappers Kendrick Lamar and Dr Dre and actors Kevin Costner and Niecy Nash.
And, for the sake of accuracy, no Marklewho was born in Canoga Park, another township in the opposite direction from Compton, and grew up in The Angels. Hence the open racism of the headline.
The Daily Star headlined with a similar allusion: “Will Harry Marry Gang Royalty?”
wrote the duke of sussex in Spare: “I couldn’t believe it. My blood ran cold. He was furious, although he felt something worse: shame. My mother country? Acting like this? With her? With us? Really?”
Shortly after Rachel Johnsonsister of former prime minister Boris Johnson wrote in the Email: “If her alleged union with Prince Harry is true, the Windsor they will enrich his watery blue blood, pale Spencer skin and ginger hair with some hard-hitting, exotic DNA.” He also claimed that Markle’s mother, Doria, was from “the bad part of the neighborhood” and provided “as irrefutable proof,” he ironized. In the shadow— the dreadlocks of Doria”.
The Telegraph he scrutinized “from all angles the burning question of whether or not I had the legal right to marry a (horror!) divorcee,” Harry continued. Had the then-divorced Prince Charles married a divorcee? It didn’t matter so much, apparently, given the pigmentation of his skin, he suggested.
In it viewerMelanie McDonagh wrote after the engagement announcement: “70 years ago, Meghan Markle would have been the kind of woman a prince would have taken as a lover, not a wife.” The Email insisted on the peculiar traits of the bride’s parents and siblings: “It is fair to say that Meghan’s family is one of the most unconventional to have joined the royal family.” Of course, speculation abounded about the complexion of the children the couple might have.
The comparisons with Kate Middleton they were the main channel of racism against Markle. Everything the white woman did was fine while the same, done by the mixed woman, was scandalous.
Kate’s wedding bouquet, made from lilies of the valley that she grew herself, “obeys the royal code”, while “Meghan Markle’s flowers may have endangered the life of the princess charlotte“, according to him Express. The current ones princes of wales They “secretly created companies to protect their brand, like the Beckhams”, while Harry and Meghan “registered over 100 products” to create “a new empire of up to £400 million”. If Kate “tenderly cradled her tummy” during her pregnancies, Meghan seemed “couldn’t keep her hands off her tummy.”
Spare: In the Shadow highlighted headlines about avocados. “She had been ‘caught’ eating avocado toast and implied, on the verge of apoplexy, that the avocado harvest was accelerating the destruction of tropical forests, destabilizing developing countries and helping to finance terrorism,” he recalled. Prince. “Of course, not long ago the same media had been ecstatic about Kate’s passion for avocados. (‘Oh, they leave you with glowing skin!’).”
As it had happened to Lady Di, Markle was followed by private detectives, who studied her past and her previous relationships. But having real information didn’t stop them from making up raunchier stories, which Harry complained about. “But they continued to respond to the continuous warnings of the Royal House lawyer with the same omission of response, which was summed up in a mocking provocation: ‘Nos. Gives. Same,’” he summed up.
In fact, Markle won her lawsuit against the Daily Mail for the publication of a letter she had sent to her father, Thomas Markle. But that did not calm the coverage of that or other sensationalist media either.
The Duke of Sussex consulted a lawyer and released a statement against the racism suffered by his fiancée. But that statement “generated a new type of attack: the one carried out by my family,” he added. “My father and Willy were furious. They scolded me. My statement made them look bad, they both said.”
The reason? “Because they had never made a statement to defend their girlfriends or wives when they were the ones harassed.”
Although the Sussexes talked about racism in the royal family – in March 2021 Harry confirmed to Ophra that in a meeting they had spoken to him about the “appearance” that Archie, their first son, could have – racism and harassment from the press weighed most heavily on his decision to leave the UK. The couple and their two children currently live in California, United States.
Lady Di also experienced this discrimination towards the end of her days: “She was beaten by the press just for sleeping with an Arab,” the writer summarized. martin amis. he meant Dodi al-Fayedthe princess’s partner, who died with her in the accident in Pont de l’Almain Paris.
In the 80s and 90s, media harassment went much further. As Harry summed up: “I have seen what happens when a loved one he becomes commoditized to the point that he is no longer seen as a real person. I lost my mother and now I see my wife fall victim to the same powerful forces.”
Diana changed the image of the British crown before society, mainly due to her natural way of communicating and acting. But that itself stimulated the persecution of the press, which was always intense but which, since 1982, got out of hand.
That February the sun posted photos of the bikini-clad princess, pregnant with her first child, while vacationing with Carlos in the Bahamas. Headlined “Bahama Mama,” the images led the way in the hunt that ended in the crashed car in 1997. So extreme was the coverage that the House of Commons discussed the conflict of interest that can arise between freedom of expression and the right to privacy.