Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex / Wikimedia Commons
Remember when Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, confessed to grabbing people by their genitals? “When you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”*
Oh, that wasn’t the Duchess of Sussex, a woman in a mostly symbolic royal position? That was the future president of the United States?
Well, what about the time she was caught cheating on her spouse, professing a desire to “live inside” her lover’s knickers?*
Oh. That was her father-in-law Prince Charles?
So, what did Markle do again?
That’s right. She wore dark nail polish to a fancy event. The bloody nerve.
(Be right back, just laughing til I cry.)
I don’t have a concrete stance when it comes to the British royal family. While I’m not the type to deck myself out in Union Jacks and Burger King crowns when a princess comes to town, neither am I the type to skip a royal wedding. If it’s playing on my telly, I’m watching that shit. That’s history right there! Plus, I like the funny hats.
I suppose the feelings I have toward Harry and Meghan – the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – would be best described as peripheral fondness. I don’t really know what they do, but they seem to be good at it. Besides, it’s a truth universally acknowledged that Harry is the coolest of the lot and Meghan? She’s a breath of fresh air.
Well, not according to ‘royal experts’ (whoever they are).
Markle’s crimes against ‘royal tradition’ include; burgundy nail polish, shutting her car door, not wearing pantyhose, rocking an off-the-shoulder dress, and expressing some happiness over abortion reform in Ireland.These seemingly innocuous crimes were so offensive, they caused one of our own ‘royal experts’ to express a general distrust of the woman; “Sure I admire her gung-ho approach but this is the royal family, an ancient institution steeped in tradition and history.”
If it were up to me, a live-viewing of their public wedding and a few updates when they visit the Antipodes would be the extent of my exposure to the royals. But it’s not up to me, and it turns out that the daily lives of the sacred family make for big (salacious, profitable) business. Even bigger business, it seems, when one of them cooks an infant in their womb. And if the baby-harbourer is a bi-racial American divorcee? Stop the presses!
It’s disgraceful we live in a culture that stalks and harasses people for the entertainment of the public, but it leaves an especially bad taste in my mouth when the target is a pregnant person. It also leaves a bad taste in my mouth when other people in similar positions (the Duchess of Cambridge, for instance) receive far less harassment and scrutiny, with the only discernable difference being the colour of their skin.
The bullshit has been ramping up lately, as the Duchess comes to the end of her pregnancy. I can’t pop into Four Square without reading headlines about snippy, grumpy, nasty Meghan. And honestly, I’m over it. I don’t generally think (or care) too much about the continuing existence of the royal family, but I do think the traditions of an historically racist institution deserve updating. It’s odd to me, in this age of debate, that royal tradition is accepted as gospel. Because, when ‘breaking royal tradition’ means living like a normal 21st century woman, surely it’s the tradition that must be scrutinised, not the woman who disrupts it.
*This piece uses humorous false statements to make a point about the ridiculous persecution of Meghan Markle. Please, Royal Family; don’t sue us!Support Villainesse