Buckingham Palace confirmed that Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, will not return as working members of the Royal Family. The pair, who stepped back from active duties last year, cannot ‘continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service’, according to the statement released on behalf of the Queen. The Windsors are apparently ‘saddened by their decision’ following the pair’s choice to work towards becoming financially independent. This means that Harry and Meghan will no longer have their royal patronages and Harry, one of the few royals who did active army service, will be stripped of his military patronages.
A spokesman for Harry and Meghan said:
‘As evidenced by their work over the past year, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the UK and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organizations they have represented regardless of official role. We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.’
The usual gaggle of royal correspondents are creaming themselves over this news, which is frankly not all that surprising given the past year of developments. See, you got what you wanted. Meghan and Harry aren’t senior royals anymore. They’re not getting any money from the taxpayers. They’re financially independent and are free to make their own choices in life. Aren’t you pleased? Does this mean you’ll finally cut the crap?
For me, I think this is great news for the couple. They can achieve far more and be more vocal as independent philanthropists than they ever could as royals. As a member of Team Death to the Monarchy, I’ve never understood the supposed benefits of a royal patronage for so many of these charities. Sure, it brings you a lot of attention, but how effective can that support be when they’re so hindered in what they can actually say? How can you, for example, support a charity dedicated to battling child poverty without mentioning the insidious damage caused by the Conservative government’s austerity-driven policies? How do you support women’s charities when even mentioning the word ‘feminism’ is deemed to be a shocking breach of protocol? What help can you bring to a charity supporting victims of sex trafficking when one of your relatives was BFFs with arguably the most infamous pedophile rapist of the past 30 years? The mind boggles.
The monarchy is a racist, outdated, and unavoidably parasitic institution. There is no place for the notion that some people are just born more special than others and that we should uphold this damaging classism in the name of ‘tradition.’ It’s ridiculous that we Brits are expected to respect an inbred family of racists and accused sex offenders simply because they’ve stuck around and we don’t have a fully democratic system.
They needed Meghan. They needed this vibrant, passionate, and hard-working mixed-race American woman because she was the only sliver of evidence they had that the monarchy could be ‘modern.’ See how inclusive we are? Look at how we’re now fully in the 21st century and are allowing this woman to change the world. Of course, they didn’t do that. They threw her to the wolves and the British press had a field day with turning every minute aspect of her life into sport. The message was clear: the monarchy has no desire to change. To change would mean to acknowledge that their very foundations are ones of colonialism, privilege, and exploitation.
Harry and Meghan will be fine. They’re going to make bank, have a lovely family life, and make a greater philanthropical impact than the Windsors could ever hope to pull off. The royals needed them way more than they need the royals. Good luck getting people to stay interested in Prince Edward now. Maybe you can drag out Princess Michael of Kent and her racist jewelry collection. It won’t stop the crumbling of your very institution into dust.
Header Image Source: Getty Images.