Meghan and Harry

Notice how we call them by their first names as if we know them/they’ve become like other First Name Only celebrities.

We in the former colonies don’t generally get what it means to “be a royal” although we seem to love the weddings.  Do we care because they are celebrities?  Do we care because we wish fairy tales were true?

The New York Times has published five pieces about Meghan and Harry in less than a week so The Gray Lady clearly cares.  But the most important article about them was written last week by Afua Hirsch: Black Britons Know Why Meghan Markle Wants Out.

The couple have been referred to as:

  • “A Breath of Fresh Air”
  • “Rogue Royals”
  • “Turncoats”
  • “Selfish”
  • “Victims”
  • “Victimizers”
  • “Adults Who Deserve to Live Their Own Lives” . . .

and countless other epithets, titles, and characterizations.  It’s interesting that so many people have so many comments.  But racism is the new feature in this royal story.

It’s not merely the “straight out of Compton” comment or the one about baby Archie looking like a chimpanzee.  Racism is usually coded more subtly.  We Western White People in the United States are everyday racists in the way we assume that People of Color live in poor urban neighborhoods and are inherently dangerous.  We make racist comments without even realizing it.  I know I do.

And it must be a nightmare to be followed around everywhere you go. Adele, Drake, and Cher understand this kind of imprisonment, but being “royal” ratchets it up beyond our imagination.  And being a person of mixed race who married the ginger prince feels suffocating even as an observer.

Royal news is a blessed distraction from global disasters and our own political divides.  You know what else is a distraction?  Judging people based on their skin color which has been – sinfully – not just a distraction but a policy in the United States of America.

Leave Meghan and Harry to do what they need to do.  Instead let’s focus on dismantling the everyday racism. I know I personally have a lot of work to do.

Image of Meghan Markle aka The Duchess of Sussex.

3 responses to “Meghan and Harry

  1. I am so fed up with seeing so much on racism. We need to be concerned on church membership as a whole and quit putting so much stress on a subject that has been run in the ground. We are all created equal and the sooner we start to emphasize this the quicker racism will have less impact!

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    • Hi Judy- thank you for your comment and I respectfully disagree. People with white skin can say we are ‘fed up with seeing so much on racism’ because racism doesn’t impact us the way it impacts People of Color. As a church person I see racism every day in the way comments are made about black church members that would not be made about white church members. We in the Church are called not to ‘bring in new members.’

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  2. We are called to make disciples. We are called to love God and love our neighbors as ourselves. We are called to make earth “as it is in heaven.” This includes eradicating racism (and poverty, injustice, cruelty, violence.)

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