Duchess Meghan + Avocados + An Apology For Princess Diana Coverage

Mark Cuthbert

By Pamela J

Why The British Media/Tabloids Will Never Change.

I could not stop myself from laughing, when I saw this Daily Mail article tweeted on Twitter. Many of Duchess Meghan’s fans were hurt and outraged, and I don’t blame them for feeling that way, but I personally found this article ridiculous.

Why did I find it amusing? This article vividly illustrates the level of desperation some UK media/tabs have sunken to in their quest to vilify the Duchess of Sussex. For more than two years now, there has been an insidious strategy implemented (by several UK tabs) to intentionally craft both a private and public persona of ‘the Meghan’ they want the world to see…to believe. Comically, the tabs’ attempts to smear Duchess Meghan with anything…with everything has served to shine a spotlight onto them, and expose their idiocy and ineptitude.

“It is not enough for journalists to see themselves as mere messengers without understanding the hidden agendas of the message and the myths that surround it.”John Pilger

Do these UK tabs know how ludicrous headlines like this one looks? When you look ridiculous, you have zero credibility. That was what I found the most amusing. The UK tabs plans to torch Duchess Meghan’s character, has started to backfire, and every day their character is being torched instead.
What could be termed “Avocado Gate” lends further support to my personal belief that several UK tabs have conspired to denigrate Duchess Meghan and hence, her accomplishments. Interestingly, the media’s attacks on Meghan have intensified ever since the end of the Sussexes’s wildly successful tour.

I avidly followed their Royal tour to Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand and I was amazed daily by how natural, how gracious, how meaningful, and how joyous both the Duke and Duchess were on that tour. I was also overwhelmed by the sizes of the crowds and their enthusiasm in each and every location.

The Tour proved to be wildly successful as evidenced by what occurred after the Sussexes left. For years many Australians wanted to separate Australia from the British Monarchy to form a Republic. That was the desire until…

AFP – Yahoo News – November 2018 –

Support for Aussie Republic Slumps After Harry and Meghan Visit

“Public support for Australia breaking its ties to the British monarchy has slumped following the triumphant visit Down Under by Prince Harry and his pregnant wife Meghan, according to a survey published Monday (Nov 12).

The Newspoll survey found only 40 per cent of respondents favoured Australia becoming a republic, the lowest level of support in 25 years and 10 points down from a similar poll conducted before the royal couple’s October visit.

A total of 48 per cent of the 1,800 people questioned said they opposed ending the colonial tradition of having the British monarch act as Australia’s head of state.

It was the first time since a 1999 referendum on the issue which maintained Australia’s status that supporters of the monarchy outnumbered republicans.

Australia’s opposition Labor Party, which is favoured to take power in the next national elections due by May, announced Monday that it would organise another plebiscite on becoming a republic if elected.

Monday’s poll indicated that bid would likely fail as it did in 1999.

The turnaround in public sentiment came after Prince Harry and Meghan spent two weeks touring Australia, New Zealand and Pacific islands in a tour that drew adoring throngs.

It was the first international tour for Harry and the American-born former actress since the couple were married in May, and began with the announcement that Meghan was pregnant.

She charmed crowds with a down-to-earth style which saw her halt the royal entourage several times to give shy toddlers a cuddle and bring home-made banana bread to an afternoon tea in the outback town of Dubbo.” (AFP – Yahoo News – November 2018)

That Aussie Republic support slump could be a temporary blip or the start of a new trend. My guess is that it’s a new trend, and the significance it represents, is unsettling to some observers. When the Sussexes returned to the UK, loaded down with suitcases full of gifts, adulation of the masses, deluged with good reviews from critics, and equipped with the knowledge that (for the time being) Australian Republicianism had been impeded… They were greeted by some malcontent media.

Indian painter Jagjot Singh Rubal touches up his painting of Prince Harry (L) and Meghan Markle ahead of their royal wedding. Photograph: Arinder Nanu/AFP/Getty Images

The blatant bitterness towards the Duchess of Sussex especially piqued my interest. Why would the UK media execute unprovoked attacks on a newly minted Royal, whose very presence brings more attention, more exposure, more opportunities and more revenue to them?

What could have triggered this offensive?

I painstakingly pondered this question… I’ve known Meghan to be an intelligent, hardworking, astute, confident, eloquent biracial woman. She has been a proud feminist and an advocate for women for most of her life. When she married Harry she came with irrefutable credentials– so that couldn’t be the issue. Could it?

There has been a constant flow of articles written about Meghan ever since the media knew that she was Harry’s girlfriend; however, the tone nowadays has shifted. This change came after the tour. A tour that was internationally covered and highlighted the growing influence of Duchess Meghan in the eyes of the global public.

To fully comprehend how unprecedented the public’s response was to Sussexes’Tour; and just how triumphant it really was, we need to use a historical context.

I’ve chosen to use the media’s critique from two tours completed by the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge in 2016 to illustrate my point.

Here are two headlines from their tours:

The Sun – May 2016 – Wills and Kate’s royal tour of India and Bhutan more like £270k private hol… and you footed the bill

The Daily Beast – September 2016 – What’s Wrong With William and Kate’s Tour of Canada?

Let’s just say the response Will and Kate received while on their Royal tours in 2016, wasn’t like the response Harry and Meghan received on their Royal tour in 2018, and let’s just leave it at that.

So if the Sussex tour was such a coup for the British Royal Family, thus, the UK; why are some media working vigorously to tarnish the ‘golden couple’ and specifically Meghan?

The only conclusion I came up with was that the media are afraid; they fear and loathe her success.That can be the only explanation for what we have observed in the last four months.

Two brothers torn apart by a divorced American interloper… two sisters-in-law, one dutiful, one showy, whose ill-concealed hostility helps to prise apart the siblings once thought tied together for life by their accident of birth. (Rebecca English, Nov. 2018)

Rebecca English tried to create a parallel between the Duchess of Sussex and the Duchess of Windsor. Yes, the two ladies are American divorcees (notably Wallis was twice divorced), they both prefer to use their middle names, and they did marry British Dukes; however, that’s where the similaries end. Bessie (Wallis) married Edward (David), who had been an heir apparent & had in fact become a KING; his abdication ‘demoted’ him to a title of Duke. Rachel (Meghan) on the other hand, married Henry (Harry), who is 6th in line to the throne, and the second born son of Charles (the heir apparent). A part of the financial settlement David received, for renouncing his rightful throne, came directly from King George VI (David’s brother) private monies when (Bertie) paid David for the purchase of Balmoral Castle & Sandringham Estate. Once her divorce from her second husband was final, Wallis and David were married in a Civil Service in France. The Windsors honeymooned in Austria, lived in France, toured Nazi Germany, spent time in Spain & Portugal, lived in The Bahamas (Duke was appointed Governor General), then lived the rest of their lives in exhile in France only briefly visiting the UK …So when exactly did the WINDSORS live NEAR TO the YORKS???

Putting aside the historical aspects, I take umbrage to the use of the word “Interloper”.

For those who don’t know what an “Interloper” means:
Interloper – A person who becomes involved in a place or situation where they are not wanted or are considered not to belong. ~ Oxford Dictionary

Where to begin? Rebecca English is aware that Meghan has African ancestry, and I’m sure she is knowledgable to the facts that people of African descent have fought and continue to fight for equality and acceptance– the right to belong…so for Rebecca English to use that word- it was malacious and low-brow.

Frankly, I was surprised with how decent the media coverage was during Harry and Meghan’s Royal tour; but I must admit I knew that civility wouldn’t last.

No one should be exempt from constructive criticism…No one!

So I expected the British media/tabloids to criticize Meghan; but that that criticism would be justified and its occurrence would be tapered or cease at least until Baby Sussex’s arrival.

It’s a well known fact that a pregnancy occurring in women 35 years and older is considered ‘a high risk pregnancy’, according to the Mayo Clinic website. Additionally, Meghan is a Woman of Colour (WOC); and WOC have one of the highest rate of maternal mortality in the world.

Every woman who has had a child at any age knows how stressful a pregnancy can be and how a mother’s high stress levels can negatively impact the baby growing in her belly. Even though this is common knowledge, the British media has totally ignored the ramifications it’s stories with baseless allegations, negative and glorified gossip, and nasty innuendo could have on the health of D o S and her child. When you couple this with the fact that Duchess Meghan’s pregnancy is considered a high risk pregnancy, this makes the media’s actions even more reckless, irresponsible and potentially dangerous.

“According to the CDC, black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women’s health. Put another way, a black woman is 22 percent more likely to die from heart disease than a white woman, 71 percent more likely to perish from cervical cancer, but 243 percent more likely to die from pregnancy- or childbirth-related causes.”
Furthermore, “relatively well-off black women …die and nearly die at higher rates than whites.” (npr, Black Mothers Keep Dying After Giving Birth. Shalon Irving’s Story Explains Why, Dec. 2017)

If you don’t believe the C.D.C. then you might believe stars like Beyonce and Serena Williams, who shared their ordeals.

“I almost died after giving birth to my daughter, Olympia. Yet I consider myself fortunate.”(Serena Williams, CNN, Feb. 2018)

“My health and my babies’ health were in danger, so I had an emergency C-section. We spent many weeks in the NICU. I was in survival mode and did not grasp it all until months later. Today I have a connection to any parent who has been through such an experience.”(Beyonce, Vogue, Sept. 2018)

“Black women often suffer more… in particularly the hypertensive diseases. So chronic hypertension, preeclampsia during pregnancy are more common among black women than white women,” Dr. Elizabeth Howell, an obstetrician-gynecologist and professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, told CNN. (CNN website, Beyoncé, Serena Williams bring attention to risks of childbirth for black women, Aug. 2018)

I guess I expected the British Media/tabloids to be empathetic to a pregnant woman, but it seems I was giving them far too much credence.

As we all know, Duchess Meghan has been met with a “hurricane” of negative press over the past several weeks: ranging from being called “Duchess Difficult”, to being castigated for sending emails at 5 AM in the morning, to *supposedly* making Duchess Kate cry (at a dress fitting for the wedding), to being maliciously and ridiculously linked to terrorists by Camilla Tominey, Associate Editor of The Telegraph, (because she supports the Hubb Community Kitchen), and I could go on…

Those are just some of the ridiculousness that has been thrown at Duchess Meghan since the wildly successful Royal tour…and now we have “Avocado Gate”; a claim that erroneously ties her to terrorism and murder, simply because she loves eating avocados.

So where does an apology to Princess Diana fit into all of this?

Source: Biography, Photo: Tim Graham/Getty Images from “Remembering Diana: A Life in Photographs

I must commend Christa Ackroyd of The Yorkshire Post UK, for being one of the few British reporters to repeatively stand up for Duchess Meghan, and address the hostility she is subjected to in the United Kingdom.

In her article entitled: Christa Ackroyd: Why Meghan mustn’t be hounded like her late mother in law Princess Diana published online on December 5th, 2018…

Ms. Ackroyd wrote:

Consider this a show of support for a young woman who is five months pregnant, in a new role, in a new country and has become the subject of such vitriol it would destroy the strongest of individuals.

“Once again we are playing the game of build ‘em up and knock ‘em down and it has to stop before we watch the total disintegration of another human being before our very eyes. What we are talking about is the hounding of a woman who is damned if she does and damned if she doesn’t. If the Duchess of Sussex behaves like a Princess she is getting above herself and has abdicated her responsibilities as an independent woman to speak out. If she speaks out she is roundly condemned for not knowing her place at the palace. Either way Meghan has become the subject of a tsunami of media speculation and criticism that is all too reminiscent of the intolerable intrusion her late mother in law Princess Diana had to endure until the day she died.Then we made her a saint when it was all too late. (Christa Ackroyd, The Yorkshire Post UK, December 2018)

“…the total disintegration of another human being before our very eyes.” was a reference to Harry’s beloved mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Basically more than twenty years later, the British media/tabloids have learned absolutely nothing from the role they played in the death of Prince Harry’s mother!

…a role the British media/tabloids admitted to, at least partly owning, as the following article excerpt details:

The Telegraph UK – August 2007 – Princess Diana: Editors Admit Guilt Over Death


“The editors of the three biggest selling tabloid newspapers at the time of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales have disclosed for the first time their own share of guilt over the accident that killed her.

The editors of The Sun, Daily Mirror and News of the World have conceded that they had helped create an atmosphere in which the paparazzi, who were chasing Diana when her car crashed in a Paris underpass, were out of control.

Phil Hall, who was editor of the News of the World, said it was a circle of culpability involving the readers who demanded more photographs, the photographers who chased her and the newspapers that published the pictures.

“A big Diana story could add 150,000 sales. So we were all responsible,” he said.

Mr Hall, speaking on the ITV1 Documentary Diana’s Last Summer, said: “I felt huge responsibility for what happened and I think everyone in the media did.

“If the paparazzi hadn’t been following her the car wouldn’t have been speeding and, you know, the accident may never have happened.” ~ The Telegraph UK – August 2007

It looks like the British media/tabloids’ remorse at being at least partly responsible for the circumstances which led to Diana’s death was very short-lived.
…Cause twenty years later, history seems to be repeating itself. Apparently, the small amount of guilt realized, was not enough to dissuade their present actions… and if Diana’s death did not change them…I don’t believe anything will.

Without missing a beat, and with not one ounce of concern, the UK media insistently hounds Duchess Meghan…a high risk pregnant woman and her unborn child… Often these tabs avariciously print fictitious material to placate their followers. Many of their followers are biased.

We can only speculate in regards to why the British media has been so hateful and cruel to Duchess Meghan; but what is different now from the Diana years, is that there is social media and avid defenders, who will not allow the British media/tabloids to play another role in “the total disintegration of another human being before our very eyes.”

Nope. Not happening!

It’s also not happening because Duchess Meghan really is a different kind of Royal…

“When you are raised by strong women, you are not intimidated by anyone.” (Joseph Johnson, Meghan’s uncle, Daily Mail, Dec. 2017)

And that is especially true if the women, who raised you are Black women.

Little Meghan, her mother and grandmother

Screenshot taken from the Daily Mail, Copyright the Daily Mail

When that’s the case, game over!

Spread some Duchess of Sussex facts

Last updated on June 27th, 2019

References

The Daily Beast Link
Oxford Dictionaries Link
Glamour Link
Telegraph Link
Biography Link
Mayo Clinic Link
Yorkshire Evening Post Link
Telegraph Link
Yahoo Link