Prince Harry con­demns me­dia ‘abuse’ of Amer­i­can girl­friend

Jamaica Gleaner - - ENTERTAINMENT -

LONDON, Eng­land (AP): T’S THE Bri­tish roy­als ver­sus the press – again – and Prince Harry thinks enough is enough. In a highly un­usual state­ment, the prince yes­ter­day lashed out at the me­dia for in­trud­ing on the pri­vacy of his new girl­friend, Amer­i­can ac­tress Meghan Markle.

The 32-year-old royal said the press had crossed a line with ar­ti­cles that had “racial un­der­tones,” and pleaded: “This is not a game.”

The con­dem­na­tion was the lat­est in an often un­easy dance be­tween Bri­tain’s roy­als and an in­ter­na­tional press hun­gry for any tid­bit about royal scan­dal or courtship. Both Harry and his brother, Prince Wil­liam, have spo­ken can­didly about their dis­trust of the me­dia: Their mother, Princess Diana, died in a 1997 car ac­ci­dent while be­ing pur­sued by pa­parazzi, and Wil­liam’s wife, Kate, was re­lent­lessly scru­ti­nised for years be­fore the cou­ple mar­ried in 2011.

It looks like noth­ing has changed.

IPrince Harry Meghan Markle

Kens­ing­ton Palace de­scribed how jour­nal­ists tried to break into Markle’s home, how news­pa­pers of­fered “sub­stan­tial bribes” to her ex-boyfriend, and said nearly every­one she knows has been bom­barded for in­for­ma­tion. Markle’s mother couldn’t even get to her front door with­out jostling re­porters.

“What is ex­tra­or­di­nary about this let­ter is the level of eth­i­cal con­duct breaches it de­tails,” said Steven Bar­nett, a com­mu­ni­ca­tions pro­fes­sor at the Univer­sity of West­min­ster. “You have to feel something for Harry, who is pre­sum­ably think­ing of his mother and what she had to put up with.”

Markle, 35, is best known for her role as a feisty para­le­gal in the US tele­vi­sion drama “Suits.”

Many tabloids al­luded to her mixed-race her­itage – she has an African-Amer­i­can mother and a white fa­ther. One Daily Mail head­line de­scribed her an­ces­tors as “a tai­lor, a teacher and a cleaner in racially di­vided Jim Crow South.” An­other dubbed her a “saucy di­vorcee”.

The Daily Mir­ror linked Markle with an on­line pornog­ra­phy site, say­ing clips of her from “Suits” fea­tured on the adult site.

Markle has so far not re­sponded, but has in the past writ­ten about how she came to terms with be­ing a “bira­cial woman.”

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