My goodness, the sturm, the drang, the accusations, the gnashing of teeth, the sheer drama of it all.
No, not another day in the House of Commons, but the House of Windsor.
You may have heard the news — the Duke and Duchess of Sussex,more commonly known as Meghan and Harry, announced last week that they want to step back from their Royal duties and live, at least part time, in Canada, whilst seeing financial independence and a life out of the public eye.
Now in a lot of families, when a 35 year old decides its time to move on and stop living on the family resources, it is a cause of great rejoicing. But not in the world of the royals.
No, this decision involved a “summit” at one of Queen Elizabeth II’s numerous castles. Attending the summit were the Queen, Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince Harry. Meghan apparently attended by conference call.
In a statement after the meeting, the Queen said the family would have preferred the couple to “remain full-time working members of the royal family,” but that they “respect and understand” Prince Harry and Meghan’s “wish to live a more independent life.”
There’s a lot to unload in that carefully worded statement.
The Queen would have preferred the Duke and Duchess maintained the status quo. In days of yore, the queen could have bellowed “Off with their heads!” and that would have been the end of any attempts at independence. But alas, or perhaps thankfully, those days of yore are… yore.
There has been much talk of the Duke and Duchess becoming ‘financially independent’. Now, Meghan was a successful actress before she married, and should she choose to return to that career I’m sure doors would open anywhere. It would be quite a coup to grab the Duchess of Sussex in any role.
But Harry could be a little more problematic. Yes, he served in the military but, as any retired veteran could tell you, that’s no guarantee of employment.
Still, he could put his resume up on Indeed and search for a job.
Military helicopter piloting
Accepting of flowers
But despite the thin resume, I don’t believe Harry would have any trouble finding employment either. Any company would be happy to bring him on.
He could sell cars. “The Duke’s Daily Deals”
I mean can you imagine any manager not hiring him? The PR alone is worth millions.
“Yeah, I had a lot of good candidates, but I decided to go with the Duke. Duke of Sussex. Nice guy. Good at duking. We need someone like that.”
The point is, I’m not worried about their ability to earn a living. Now, they are accustomed to living at a level most of us are not familiar with, but perhaps they can cut a few things out of their budget and be just fine.
And in all seriousness, I hope they can find some peace and quiet because the way they, especially Meghan, have been treated by the London press and online trolls is just awful.
She has been held to impossible standards, has been accused of causing every problem the royal family has encountered since she entered the scene. And underlying it all is the stench of racism. Numerous people have pointed out the difference between the way the Duchess of Sussex, and the very Caucasian Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, have been treated.
Given that Harry lost his own mother to the unrelenting pursuit of the paparazzi, it is little wonder he’d like his own son to be raised in less fraught surroundings.
Harry is sixth in line for the throne behind his father, brother, nephews and niece. The possibilities are slim to none that he’d ever be called to the throne.
But will the press back off if the couple really does fade into a quiet life?
Maybe. Every public sighting will still be a big deal for quite some time, but maybe. Prince Andrew’s former wife, Sarah Ferguson, has managed to live a relatively quiet life since her divorce. She remains royal family-adjacent, as mother to two princesses, but is not hounded relentlessly.
Let us hope we can say the same for the Duke and Duchess a few years down the road.