In the last 24 hours of their African tour, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made an interesting announcement: they’re suing the Mail on Sunday, which is the Sunday edition of the Daily Mail. Because they can’t sue – I guess? – for the sustained and hateful smear campaign, they’re suing over one particular story: the February publication of Meghan’s letter to her father, Thomas Markle. The letter was from 2018, soon after Harry and Meghan’s wedding, in which Meghan detailed what her father could do to earn back her trust and be in her life. Thomas either sold the original letter or a copy of the letter to the MoS. Once again, Meghan’s chess game is on point: she arranged for her friends to speak to People Magazine, they revealed the existence of the letter, then Thomas sold the letter because he can’t stop selling out his daughter. Meghan played everybody, from her dad to the Mail on Sunday. Hahaha motherf–kers.
Just because Harry and Meghan can’t sue every British tabloids for all of their sh-tty reporting and smears, doesn’t mean they can’t issue a terse statement about it. Prince Harry authored this, and it’s yet another attempt by Harry to protect his wife. It works on a few levels too, because as we’ve seen time and time again… the smears are (partially) coming from inside the palace. Here’s Harry’s statement in full:
As a couple, we believe in media freedom and objective, truthful reporting. We regard it as a cornerstone of democracy and in the current state of the world – on every level – we have never needed responsible media more. Unfortunately, my wife has become one of the latest victims of a British tabloid press that wages campaigns against individuals with no thought to the consequences – a ruthless campaign that has escalated over the past year, throughout her pregnancy and while raising our newborn son.
There is a human cost to this relentless propaganda, specifically when it is knowingly false and malicious, and though we have continued to put on a brave face – as so many of you can relate to – I cannot begin to describe how painful it has been. Because in today’s digital age, press fabrications are repurposed as truth across the globe. One day’s coverage is no longer tomorrow’s chip-paper. Up to now, we have been unable to correct the continual misrepresentations – something that these select media outlets have been aware of and have therefore exploited on a daily and sometimes hourly basis.
It is for this reason we are taking legal action, a process that has been many months in the making. The positive coverage of the past week from these same publications exposes the double standards of this specific press pack that has vilified her almost daily for the past nine months; they have been able to create lie after lie at her expense simply because she has not been visible while on maternity leave. She is the same woman she was a year ago on our wedding day, just as she is the same woman you’ve seen on this Africa tour. For these select media this is a game, and one that we have been unwilling to play from the start. I have been a silent witness to her private suffering for too long. To stand back and do nothing would be contrary to everything we believe in.
This particular legal action hinges on one incident in a long and disturbing pattern of behaviour by British tabloid media. The contents of a private letter were published unlawfully in an intentionally destructive manner to manipulate you, the reader, and further the divisive agenda of the media group in question. In addition to their unlawful publication of this private document, they purposely misled you by strategically omitting select paragraphs, specific sentences, and even singular words to mask the lies they had perpetuated for over a year.
There comes a point when the only thing to do is to stand up to this behaviour, because it destroys people and destroys lives. Put simply, it is bullying, which scares and silences people. We all know this isn’t acceptable, at any level. We won’t and can’t believe in a world where there is no accountability for this. Though this action may not be the safe one, it is the right one. Because my deepest fear is history repeating itself. I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditised to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person. I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces.
We thank you, the public, for your continued support. It is hugely appreciated. Although it may not seem like it, we really need it.
“Though this action may not be the safe one, it is the right one.” That’s not a comment to the press, that’s a comment to Harry’s family. His grandmother and his father have probably told him that he and Meghan just need to keep calm and keep quiet about the smears. “My deepest fear is history repeating itself. I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditised to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person. I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces.” It’s unlike Diana’s situation in that Meghan is a woman of color and so much of the smear campaign is just flat-out racist. Anyway… props to the Sussexes, especially Meghan, for the masterstroke decision to use People Magazine to manipulate Thomas Markle into selling her letter, and then using that letter’s publication as the centerpiece of a lawsuit. BRAVA!
Photos courtesy of Backgrid.