BY STAFF REPORTER
Britain’s Prince Harry issued a rare statement this week to blast the British media for subjecting his new girlfriend, Meghan Markle, to a public smear campaign of “racial undertones, outright sexism and racism,” as well as to “a wave of abuse and harassment.”
“The past week has seen a line crossed. His girlfriend, Meghan Markle, has been subject to a wave of abuse and harassment,” read statement that was publicly posted on the British Monarchy’ royal website that manages Prince Harry’s communications and image.
“Some of this has been very public – the smear on the front page of a national newspaper; the racial undertones of comment pieces; and the outright sexism and racism of social media trolls and web article comments,” read the statement.
The statement which confirmed the relationship for the first time, also reveal that the prince and his girlfriend have been engaged in behind the scene legal battles to keep defamatory stories from appearing in papers.
The British media did not react well to the news that the 32-year old Prince Harry, the fifth in line to the UK throne and the grandson of Queen Elizabeth, could be dating a 35-year old Markle, the American actor who plays Rachel in the series Suits.
The negative publicity in the British media was not so much about the fact that Markle has no royal blood and is not British but because Markle is black. Markle is born of mixed race, by a white father and black mother. She grew up in Los Angeles but lives in Toronto, Canada.
“He has rarely taken formal action on the very regular publication of fictional stories that are written about him and he has worked hard to develop a professional relationship with the media,” the statement said.
“Some of it has been hidden from the public – the nightly legal battles to keep defamatory stories out of papers; her mother having to struggle past photographers in order to get to her front door; the attempts of reporters and photographers to gain illegal entry to her home and the calls to police that followed; the substantial bribes offered by papers to her ex-boyfriend; the bombardment of nearly every friend, co-worker, and loved one in her life,” said the statement.
Harry has spoken out before about his dislike of the press and the statement said that while he appreciated he lived a privileged life, he felt he had to speak out.
“It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm,” the statement said.
“He knows commentators will say this is ‘the price she has to pay’ and that ‘this is all part of the game’. He strongly disagrees. This is not a game – it is her life and his.”
Merkle is a UN Women Advocate for Women’s Leadership and Political Participation, runs her own lifestyle website called The Tig, and has just launched a fashion line.