A royal drama of Shakespearean magnitude in Daydreaming on the Porch

  • March 12, 2021, 3:36 a.m.
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  • Public

I debated whether to write on this subject because I’ll have to make a confession. But it’s not a bad one. Its just that the Harry and Meghan saga of late has me in its vice like no other boiling-over pot of high octane melodrama. This is it, folks. You don’t find many dramatic stories as perfectly Shakespearean as those that have beset England’s House of Windsor over the decades and ages, and the last couple of weeks in particular.

My interest in the British royal family and their once far flung empire is rather readily explainable. In my teen years I was an avid collector of stamps of the British Empire and its colonies. There were still many of them in the 1960s. Islands in the Pacific such as the Solomons, and even the remotest islands in Earth — Pitcairn Island and Tristan da Cunha. There were the colonies in central America such as British Honduras, as well as in Africa (Rhodesia, Swaziland) and Asia (Borneo). All these stamps had portraits of Queen Elizabeth II on them. In my imagination I experienced places all over the world through stamp collecting, and I was a bit in awe of the queen. That fascination with British colonies and royalty has continued down through the decades until now. Thus, I feel almost compelled to follow all the goings on of the British royal family. It’s a guilty pleasure and arguably a waste of time, but with all things comprised of such high human drama and foibles, it’s a learning experience and a huge cut above run-of-the mill celebrity gossip.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s interview with Oprah was downright incendiary. After all, despite centuries of tradition, magnificent palaces, uniforms, crowns, jewelry, pageantry of the highest order, and a family utterly steeped in tradition and protocols, the Windsors are just a family after all, right? They hurt like any other family if they feel betrayed and all they stand for is threatened. Strip away all the glitter, pomp, and pageantry and what’s left? So what if Queen Elizabeth has 400 emoloyees at Buckinghdm Palace. My guess is she has a nice recliner chair in a cozy little den somewhere in that huge house.

What’s so fateful about Harry and Meghan is that they feared the same outcome for their lives as Harry Mother, the late Princess Diana, who was hounded by the tabloid press until her tragic death in an automobile accident 23 years ago. Rather than see themselves repeating history, the couple decided to free themselves from what had become a royal prison. They are now established on a $15 million Southern California estate, and can pursue their own lives. But at a huge price, it turns out, as the couple’s recent interview with Oprah reveals.

Harry always was the rebellious one, compared to his brother William, heir to the throne after Prince Charles. All the upper echelon of the royal family subscribes to utter fealty to duty to the crown, making countless appearances in the UK and, before Covid, around the world. They support countless charities and causes.
They do a lot of good.

But times are changing and maintaining a monarchy is expensive. The institution is embedded in the history and culture of the UK. But many say it is racist, class-ridden, archaic, and has to go. I can eventually see Buckingham Palace becoming a huge museum tourist destination much like that ultimate extravagance, the Palace of Versailles in France.

Polling indicates the public in the UK favors the royal family, while in the U.S. Harry and Meagan have more sympathy. In England, the aristocrats are calling Meagan not only a gold digger, but a malignant narcissist as well.

This deeply human story is really better than any made-up soap opera. You have brother against brother and two strong sisters-in-law supposedly going at it. A father who wont return his son’s calls. An imperious sister who’s above the fray and who reportedly disliked Diana very much. A notorious brother, Prince Andrew. A 99-year-old grandfather in the hospital. A wicked sister-in-law. And the sovereign, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, who must preside over this sorry mess.

What oh what wiIl become of Harry? Did he marry for love above all else, or was he snookered by a Hollywood actress who now hates the limelight after she has given her story to Oprah who obviously sympathizes greatly with Meghan. Time heals most wounds, doesn’t it?

I found this British socialite, author of two books on Princess Diana, and soon-to-be YouTube sensation, highly amusing and quite intelligent, utterly cynical and yet quite convincing as I watched her detailed reaction to the Oprah interview. She is the perfect spokeswoman for the old aristocracy circling the wagons and defending the monarchy above all else. She has given Meghan at least 100 lashings on the back in this video.

It really is a complex story. There are two opposing sides — those who despise her passionately, and those who defend her just as passionately. The more I learn about this story, the less sure I am about whether Meghan is villain or victim.

Lady Colin Campbell savages Meghan and Harry.

Defending Meghan Markle

https://people.com/royals/meghan-markle-friends-support-amid-bullying-claims-palace-staff/


Last updated March 12, 2021


Marg March 12, 2021

I’m going to have to come back and listen to Lady Campbell later as I didn’t realise how long it was but I like the half hour I’ve listened to so far :) Haven’t seen the interview yet because I felt I’d read so much about it that it spoiled it but one of the things mentioned that struck me as being absolute nonsense was not knowing that you had to curtsey to the Queen! And I was tickled with this comment on Lady C’s spiel - A billionaire talk show host interviewing 2 millionaires in an idyllic space discussing oppression. Touché!

ConnieK Marg ⋅ March 12, 2021

I thought it rather catty of Lady C to say that. They were discussing HER treatment by the "Organization", not her treatment as relates to poor people. If you were made to turn over your passport, driver's licenses and KEYS to the organization, would you wonder what sort of cult you were joining? I would. Why do they need her keys? And why is the organization run by the press?

We do not have a queen here. I did not know you don't shake hands with the queen or even touch her until a few years ago.

I think Meghan was treated poorly. Yes, some of it is exaggerated (they HAD to have known they'd lose their security detail as it was reported here in the States, so it WAS public knowledge), but I also think Harry makes a valid point: he doesn't want his family hounded.

Marg ConnieK ⋅ March 12, 2021

Lady C didn't make the comment though - it was made by someone who was listening to her talk.

ConnieK Marg ⋅ March 12, 2021

That's what the show is all about. "Let's Talk Trash About People". No thank you. She's making money off gossiping. It's awful.

Oswego Marg ⋅ March 12, 2021

Yes, she’s so interesting. She has an incredible command of language.

Barbara Bad March 12, 2021

Most UK people are either on Harry and Megan's side or else don't give a damn. The tabloids lie and skew polls. (eg. a Daily Mail poll will be very pro queen, but only right wing, bigotted arseholes read it - it's known as The Daily Fail.) And people like Piers Morgan are chosen because they're inflammatory (so we talk about him and tune in.)

I personally feel a bit sorry for the royals, but at the same time they're a symbol of inequality and elitism as well as a ridiculous waste of money.

Oswego Barbara Bad ⋅ March 12, 2021

Yes, the entire structure is a house of cards that happens to be glued together very well. As much as the British monarchy is obsolete, I still find it fascinating. It’s also possible for us distant commoners to get a glimpse inside Buckingham Palace once in a while. 😌

Yes, The Daily Mail does seem like a bit of a rag.

Lady of the Bann March 12, 2021

Oooh, she doesnt like Meghan very much does she. Like Marg can't listen to it all and neither have I seen the show.
It's hard to know what to believe when we can only be influenced what we are told. And does it even matter? I feel sorry for Harry. He never chose to be part of the Royal Family and he deserves happiness. The media was awful about Meghan, but like Diana, she should have known what they were getting in to. She either was so in love she thought she could handle it or she had her eye on the prize. Who are we to judge.
Have you seen Bridgerton? It's quite weird the way the Queen and Duke and other characters are coloured and no mention is made of it. It's just accepted. A very popular show.
I don't think race comes into it.

Oswego Lady of the Bann ⋅ March 12, 2021

Yes, definitely. She must have know what she was getting into. Harry never had the best judgment in the world, but he presumably matured after 10 years in the military, but was swept away by a glamorous beauty, whose beauty to him was evidently more than skin deep. He gave up a lot, but I think he wanted to.

Abritelight March 12, 2021

My interest, ok infatuation, with all things royal at Buckingham palace and all the splendid royal homes came to a screeching halt in that tunnel in France.

Oswego Abritelight ⋅ March 12, 2021

I sure wouldn't want to drive under the channel in that claustrophobic tube. Maybe in a high speed train! :)

ConnieK March 12, 2021

Well, SHE'S rather vicious, isn't she? Why should Meghan's child's skin tone even matter (I think it was horse-faced Camilla)? I don't need to despise or defend. I just feel the same as I did when everyone rushed online to view Brittany Spear's accidentally exposed private areas: they are trashing someone's daughter. CLEARLY, Meghan and Harry are distressed over how they were treated. Perhaps airing it in public was too far by British standards, but Americans are open, outspoken, and don't put much importance on social niceties. Meghan is NOT British. Lady C may be infatuated and/or defensive but she is a relative outsider just giving her opinion. The royals tend to avoid grand-standers like her.

Oswego ConnieK ⋅ March 12, 2021

Her sarcasm was rather over the top, “vicious” one might say; nevertheless, she’s quite intelligent and gave a compelling, even riveting, take-down, mostly of Meghan. So different and wickedly smarter than most anything else you'll see or hear on the subject in the U.S. I’m not condoning the uglier aspects if her rendition, and I really do feel sorry for Meghan and Harry, but Lady C does lay it all bare from her perspective and minces no words. She’s convincing, just as Meghan can be. As I said, this plot has everything from villains to saints.

ConnieK Oswego ⋅ March 12, 2021

What you see as a "compelling, even riveting, take-down" I see as a hounding by the press, using slander and innuendo to justify her bullying comments. I've met people like her in high society. She's a witch. Only I spell it with a b.

Oswego ConnieK ⋅ March 12, 2021

She’s not the press. I was only referring to her individual commentary on YouTube. What you said is probably true, but I see the intelligence behind the “witch,” and its fascinating to me, again a Shakespearean level of drama. She’s so wrong to say Personality Disorder is not a form of mental illness and to question Megan’s sincerity about being suicidal and playing the race card. There’s a lot to disagree with, but if she’s right about Meghan, we’re suckers for falling for it, although with the best of intentions. For someone so brutally frank, she has a wide range of admirers. I think people like strong women like that who speak their minds.

ConnieK Oswego ⋅ March 12, 2021

No, the organization running the Royal Family IS the press and they're running it like the mafia.

Meghan also has a wide range of admirers. What if Lady C's opinion is way off base because she really never met her and she's just another internet troll like Meghan's father and step-sister?

Do you think Lady C is not making money off trashing this girl? She's stirring the pot for publicity, nothing more. This is tabloid gossip, not better than the National Enquirer. Lady C has no facts. It's all her lofty opinion. She's full of herself. Anyone can upspeak, by the way. I can teach you.

I don't think YOU like it if I got online and said you were mean. I know I wouldn't like it if you did that to me. I've had relatives spread lies about me and when I defended myself there were some who would not believe me because they loved to hate me.

SHE does NOT know if Meghan was suicidal. She does NOT know if Meghan suffered racial slurs. And neither do you or I. So why doubt Meghan's word? I think Meghan is also a "strong woman who spoke her mind". If Lady C has proof of her statements, let her show them. Otherwise she needs to take that stiff upper lip and pull it up over her head.

Look at her diatribe with the eyes of a woman who has been abused and I think you'll see her in an entirely different light. Her attitude and comments are the reason suicidal people don't come forward and ask for help.

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