The royal trouble!

The world is horrified at Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's revelation that racism towards Meghan was the principal reason they fled their royal home to find freedom in California. But it should not be so because systemic racism is a stark reality, more so in the world of privilege that British royalty lives in.  Meghan, whose mum is black, claimed race was a factor in 22-month-old Archie not being made a prince. But Craig Prescott, one of Britain’s s most respected constitutional lawyers, said: “It is very clear Archie, or indeed any of the Sussexes’ children would not have the right to be a prince or princess as the duchess has suggested.
“The rules are clear, albeit perhaps slightly confusing for some... but they are governed by the letters patent by George V.” The written order in 1917 by George V – the Queen’s grandad – declared that only royal offspring who are in the direct line of succession could be made a prince or princess and receives titles of His or Her Royal Highness. Harry’s indictment of his own family for not fighting the racist attacks hurled at his biracial wife Meghan and his multiracial son Archie, whose skin colour was a matter of concern to the palace even before he was born.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’ own spokesman said before Archie was born that it had been the couple’s choice to not give their son a title. Under the rules, only William and Kate’s eldest son George – as the great-grandson of the monarch down the direct line of succession to the throne – was entitled to be a prince.  But the Queen issued new rules in 2013 so George’s siblings would also be princes or princesses. The 1917 directive meant Archie would still be entitled to be HRH or a prince, but only when his grandad Charles takes the throne. Prince Andrew’s daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie, are princesses because their father is a son of the monarch. However, Princess Anne’s children do not have royal titles. 
Harry and Meghan also accused Buckingham Palace of failing to protect their son by taking away their security. However, A sobering survey has revealed the majority of the public feel Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have let down the Queen following their interview with Oprah Winfrey, which aired on Monday. A majority of those polled called for the Sussexes to be stripped of their titles, while many people disbelieved Meghan's claim of racism against an unnamed member of the Royal Family. While overall only one in three thought the interview was the right thing to do, this rose to half among 18 to 44-year-olds. And asked if they generally believed Harry and Meghan, or the Queen and Royal Family, 52 per cent of younger people chose the Sussexes. Among those aged 45 and over, 50 per cent said the Queen and her family were more to be believed. Across all ages, once the 'don't know' were taken into account, more believed the Queen. With the exceptions of the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duchess of Cornwall and Princess Royal, all senior members of the family have suffered a dip in personal popularity since the Oprah interview first aired. 
The Palace issued a statement on behalf of the Queen saying: 'The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan. The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much-loved family members.'

 

- Prabhakar Purandare

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