Jamaicans are not happy about Prince William’s clownish slavery speech

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge probably have at least a dozen staffers with them, from dressers to hairstylists to office people coordinating things behind the scenes. Let me say to all of them: you’re doing a terrible job, sweeties. We’ve known for years that Kensington Palace is a clownshow, but the clownery is even more exposed when they take the show on the road. I’m sure that William has some Tory “speechwriter” on staff who decided the precise words William should use in his speech last night at the Governor-General’s home, at a black-tie reception. What the clownshow brain trust decided on was: “I strongly agree with my father, the Prince of Wales, who said in Barbados last year ‘the appalling atrocities they bring forever stains our history’. I want to express my profound sorrow, slavery was abhorrent and it should never have happened.” As I said, a historical passive voice. Well, Jamaicans know that Baldemort’s words were too little, too late:

The Duke of Cambridge visited the fourth-largest Commonwealth realm, during which protestors called for him to apologise for the Royal Family’s role in the slave trade. While he expressed “sorrow”, Prince William didn’t personally apologise for the “abhorrent” practice. The Duke and Duchess also met with the country’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness, which a senior government official in Jamaica labelled “deeply embarrassing”.

Good Morning Britain correspondent Noel Phillips explored the response to the Duke’s statement. He explained: “If you’re measuring the reaction from those who have been protesting against this visit, and I think it’s fair to say they are incredibly disappointed that they did not hear the words ‘I am sorry’. But let’s not forget this really was a significant and consequential moment for the duke, his grandmother had sent him to this island on a tour described as a charm offensive, I think it’s fair to say that charm has been ineffective so far.”

Many believed the speech did not go far enough to acknowledge the Royal Family’s role in the slave trade. After listening to the Prince’s words, Omar Ryan later said: “That’s a statement of regret that it shouldn’t have happened, but he is not admitting to their role in the enslavement of African Caribbean people.”

[From The Daily Express]

Something I’ve been thinking about during the whole Keen Caribbean Disaster Tour is that William and Kate tend to believe that as long as they don’t directly acknowledge anything, they can just get by and swim along and no one will notice. Like, William probably thought he made a brilliant speech and no one would notice his passive voice or his lack of apology. The royalists and neocolonialists argue that if William directly apologized for slavery and his family’s role in it, then he would be admitting his family’s historical culpability and opening up the royal family to the reparations conversation. But… all of those conversations are happening already. The history is still the history, and people are well aware of the history. People are already having those conversations about reparations. If William (or any other royal) directly acknowledged all that, all he would be doing is shifting the Overton Window towards a conversation about righting historical injustices.

Photos courtesy of Instar, Backgrid.

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88 Responses to “Jamaicans are not happy about Prince William’s clownish slavery speech”

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  1. equality says:

    No shock. When has anyone in the RF apologized sincerely except for PH? Did Phil ever apologize for any of his “gaffes”?

  2. aquarius64 says:

    This should be called Farewell to the Commonwealth Tour.

  3. iforget says:

    I mean,I suppose he comes by it honestly (Petty Betty, looking at you). If one doesn’t talk about the unpleasantness, the unpleasantness doesn’t exist.

    However, this tour has been giving me life! So inspiring watching brave people stand up against the undeserving institution of the house of windsor #republic #abolishthemonarchy

  4. Moss says:

    Not even joking — did Kate have a stroke? There are two photos now of her with half her face drooping. Concerning, even if I don’t like her.

    • TigerMcQueen says:

      I noticed that too. She looked to me like someone who has had work done and it’s gone badly.

    • Merricat says:

      No, that’s a version of her smirk.

    • OzJennifer says:

      I know that’s not what’s happening here, but I immediately thought dental work, ’cause that’s what my mouth does for few hours after I’ve been numbed for a filling.

    • Becks1 says:

      There is something different about her face on this tour and I don’t know what exactly. Her eyes look different. She almost likes Bella Hadid a little bit with her hair and makeup. I don’t know if she’s tired, had work done, etc. But there is something a bit different.

    • Kate’s had Botox and fillers. All her photos are heavily photoshopped. All her wrinkles and deep hard lines have been magically gone. Where did they go? They’re still there but the royal rotas really take their time to touch up and smoothen Kate’s face via photoshop before they release her photos for public consumption. Jamaican press must have snapped her with unedited photos which they could release to the public.

    • Rose says:

      I noticed that immediately. Some plastics work that numbed or otherwise damaged her facial nerve? Or it very well could be a TBI.

      No, it doesn’t excuse her terrible behaviour. But she’s obviously not well.

    • MY3CENTS says:

      Wow yes, either someone is serving some payback via photoshop or her face look like two different halves. Very disturbing.

    • Swirlmamad says:

      It’s so obvious something is off in that photo — her mouth is clearly lopsided. I really can’t tell if it’s the result of bad work or something more at play, health wise.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Her lower jaw skews to the right when she talks (noticed it during the engagement interview), so maybe it’s some split-second timing of the photos that capture the right side of her mouth doing more of the work? The left & right sides of her face have always been noticeably different, so maybe with the extra facial work some unforeseen consequence is happening?

      • Wiglet Watcher says:

        She has an underbite and yes her jaw does skew to the side.

        This did strike me also as a split second photo.

    • MizJ says:

      Hate to diagnose anyone from a picture, but… lol. Could be Bell’s Palsy. It’s a viral infection, but I believe it’s made worse with stress?

      • BeanieBean says:

        A friend had that in high school. Had to wear an eye patch for a while, because her eye wouldn’t close. I think Kate would probably cancel from everything if this were the case.

      • Lady D says:

        I had to tape my eye shut for about 2 1/2 weeks when I got it. I also couldn’t keep liquid in my mouth. It just fell right out. So did cigarettes. I took massive amounts of steroids for six weeks and then had to go back to the doctor. I asked him where all my muscles were. I was a little pissed I didn’t get so much as a bicep from all those steroids.

    • Tasha says:

      She looks like Katie Holmes there.

    • SpankyB says:

      The camera just caught a split second moment before turning her smirk into a smile. Bill seems to have a smirk before a smile too.

      But I did think it looked like she had been crying. Maybe a taste of her own mean-girl karma hurt her feelings.

    • DeeSea says:

      She looks *exactly* like Lisa Barlow in that pic. (Any RHoSLC fans, or “fans,” in the house?)

    • yeahyeaheve says:

      The Left sided mouth droop is also present in the photo with the Prime Minister and his wife, so it doesn’t seem to be a split second photo angle. Definitely looks like some botox gone wrong, in perhaps the DAO muscle.

  5. TigerMcQueen says:

    I wish a reporter would directly ASK Elegant Bill why they won’t apologize. I mean, we know that an apology or acknowledgement that the royal family took part in and benefited from slavery would upset the racists and white supremacists back home, so it won’t happen. But it would be nice to get his reaction on camera.

    • Red Weather Tiger says:

      That would work IF anyone were allowed to ask them any questions. But alas.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      I think William should apologize for the slave trade but is using the “out” that all of this happened 400-200 years ago. Ok, for point of discussion in this argument I will give him that.

      HOWEVER, the way in which the Windrush Generation was treated by Theresa May’s Home Office and during her tenure as Prime Minister happened and is continuing to happen on his Royal Grandmother’s watch. How does he explain this and why did not one bother ask the question?

    • Any lawyers here could speak to this more eloquently than I can, but I would imagine if they actually APOLOGIZED or in ANY way expressed responsibility, it would be opening themselves up to all kinds of lawsuits from countries-I mean look at the anger for the Elgin marbles, etc. They DON’T want this conversation. lol. And can i say again how much I am enjoying this. I wish they’d extend the tour and try to charm an African country. I’d pay money to see them try this lunacy in South Africa.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Parthenon marbles. Let’s call them what they are.

      • Lucy says:

        For me, I don’t think that holds up, because who would be suing? Can a sovereign nation sue a sovereign nation? There’s no enforcement mechanism. Class action suits from people, again against a country? They just don’t want to admit anything because they’re white privilege embodied.

      • Nic919 says:

        An apology isn’t necessarily an admission of liability but it does depend on the jurisdiction.

  6. PaulaH says:

    It’s difficult to talk reason and logic to the Royals. Their very existence is based on a fantasy. They don’t want to acknowledge the truth. Frankly they don’t want to acknowledge the Jamaicans. They had one purpose put on the charm so everyone could celebrate the Jubbly. The fact that the Royals don’t understand that the Jubbly embodies everything that the Jamaicans are fighting against and rejecting should speak volumes to everyone.

    • Colby says:

      This. Ive said many times that their behavior, vile as it is, makes perfect sense when you consider the reality in which these people live.

      They have been raised, from birth. To believe they are ordained by God and by definition better than everyone else. They are waited on hand and foot, fawned over, always told they’re right. Add to that the inherent tensions of the family being arranged to always support the heirs under any circumstance, throwing anyone else under the bus.

      John Oliver totally nailed them as fundamentally flawed and emotionally stunted.

  7. JD says:

    Offensive Charm tour from start to finish.

  8. Merricat says:

    I mean, to *announce* that you’re setting off on a “charm offensive” is so insulting, as if charm is what’s needed–and then to send the Cambridges, who haven’t an ounce of charm! Lol.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      No one could duplicate the success of Diana’s “charm offensive” during her first tour of Australia. You know, the one that so pissed off Charles.

  9. dido says:

    No kidding. These royals will never take accountability for ANYthing. Even if it happened and was instigated by their own ancestors and they’re lavishing in the riches from it. Also, Kate really is just a mannequin, nothing more.

  10. Seraphina says:

    The Duke as always been appeased and been allowed to skate by and he thought this would be no different. He was proved wrong.

  11. Rapunzel says:

    This all could have been avoided if the BRF had, you know, listened to Jamaica when it said they didn’t want this visit. I mean, really, what did they expect?

  12. MerlinsMom1018 says:

    Here I am, an older white American woman and I’M not happy about that speech. I mean, really???? That’s it? You’re sorry??
    No Cambridge, the ONLY thing you and your entire family are “sorry” for is that at long last, y’all are being called out and facing the consequences that are long overdue and y’all are being shown the door.
    Oh and by the way “my father, the Prince of Wales” remark? Thanks for reminding the folks who he is, because apparently they have no clue 🙄

    • Miranda says:

      YES, thank you, that “my father, the Prince of Wales” crap was just…I mean…can you imagine the sheer entitlement and snobbery and tone-deafness it takes to try and pull rank in a damn APOLOGY?! Like, whatever came after those words was essentially irrelevant. He could’ve made the best apology ever and that preface would’ve negated it.

      • Twin Falls says:

        I don’t usually follow the royal gossip but this is a train wreck I can’t look away from. He opened the tour (which I love referenced as a farewell tour) with a reference to his grandmother the Queen of Belize. Of course he name checked in an “apology”.

      • Snrub says:

        I can’t stop thinking of “My father, the inventor of toaster strudel…”

  13. Colby says:

    Even if William had kicked it out if the park, it wouldn’t have mattered. The ship has sailed. These commonwealth countries are done with the monarchy- as well they should be, and they will be leaving, especially after QE is gone.

  14. serena says:

    “..William and Kate tend to believe that as long as they don’t directly acknowledge anything, they can just get by and swim along and no one will notice” I agree, and I think this was the RF modus operandi for decades (or even centuries), but times have changed and nobody will accept these ‘shrug replies’ now. It will only make them look increasingly more incompetent and tone-deaf, unfit to rule and certainly not good enough to be a public figure who should represent a country.

  15. Ari says:

    I keep wondering who thought this tour would be a good idea. If the BRF wants to embrace the status quo – and keep their privilege, then they should stay put, and do nothing to bring attention to themselves.

    • ArtHistorian says:

      The just followed standard operations – the BRF usually visit the “colonies” when Liz has a Jubilee.

  16. Chelsea says:

    I had kept from commenting on this trainwreck tour but I really cant get over the Windrush second of his speech. He thanks the Windrush generation for helping rebuild Britain but he not only doesn’t apologize for the UK deporting many of those people but he tries to use a statue being built for them in London as some kind of proof that the UK cares about Jamaica. This has been one of the most unhinged and delusional things I’ve read this year.

    It’s time like these that it is glaringly obvious that KP has a revolving door with Tory government Brexiteers. Because literally only a delusional Brexiteer would think Jamaicans are so desperate to be loved by the UK that a stupid monument would help gloss over the history of colonialism and the current horrific treatment of the Windrush Generation.

  17. C-Shell says:

    This is just right in Bill’s wheelhouse. The passive voice — bad shit just happens and it’s BAD. Like throwing up his hands, “it’s so sad, it’s BAD, what can be done?!” He feels such sorrow! He agrees with (and quotes verbatim) his father, the PoW! I actually found his tossed off gloss re: Windrush to be almost more offensive. Like it was voluntary(!) for that generation to migrate to England to rebuild after WWII, and ignoring the fact that regular deportations are ongoing to this day.

    Ah, but, Meghan poisoned the well, so the Keen Caribbean Vacay is destroyed!

  18. Eurydice says:

    Yikes, I though it would be bad, but not such a disaster. If they weren’t so lazy, stupid and arrogant, I’d almost feel sorry for them.

    • Debbie says:

      When people here were predicting that W&K’s Caribbean farewell tour would be bad, I had expected to see Kate grinning maniacally at some unsuspecting kids, and William being, well… William but I absolutely did not expect this awkward, incompetent trainwreck. It’s the equivalent of Andrew’s interview in that the RF always overestimate their ability to perform. #Rexit, indeed.

  19. Bettyrose says:

    Was Kate’s 80s prom dress meant as a distraction from the tone deaf speech? History will analyze this trip forever, every nuance.

  20. Lili says:

    i bet Charles and Camilia are laughing their socks off, and Betty is having a right old laugh as well. They put out a campagin to by pass his Dad, and yet couldnt show any leadership hidiing behind his Dad’s coat tails in his speech, no ownership of his own thoughts and actions. I reckon the PM took the measure of the man and his actions thats why he gave him the firing speech, you sent the boy to do a mans job. This man child that has no self awareness, that thought because he wasnt welcome he would phone a friend get him to fly thousands of miles in order to coax the crowds. They knew he wasnt there to engage in any discussusion this was really a vacation with photo ops. William has failed as a leader to think on his feet and address the problems in front of him instead has resorted to the old playbook he is not ready to be king

    • Tessa says:

      Charles messed up when he let William treat Harry the way he did. And also let William behave badly to Meghan. Too little too late for Charles. I think Charles and William as next kings is really depressing.

  21. Amy Bee says:

    As Peter Hunt said, William chose caution. The British press and the royalists will praise it but the speech wasn’t good and was just a repeat of Charles’ speech in Barbados. Very disappointing but not surprising.

  22. Gabby says:

    It doesn’t help that Kate’s look for this event is straight out of Scarlett O’Hara’s closet in Gone with the Wind. JFC.

    • Debbie says:

      Yeah, it’s frivolous and clueless. I know it was an evening event, but fashion can send a message, and this was not the time for bare shoulders, shiny fabrics, and tulle.

    • HeatherC says:

      I don’t care how much it costs. It looks like Scarlett O’Hara done by JC Penny attacked by the bedazzler gun from the 90s

    • Liz version 700 says:

      I swear all she needs is the curtain rod from the Carol Burnett skit. So damn tone deaf.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Ha! I should have read a bit more before adding my own similar comment! Great minds, etc., etc.

  23. Over it says:

    Can you feel the rage tonight? It’s coming right off will. His incandescents has never been so bright. He’s burning up from within. Lol. Boy does he look mad . And as Kaiser said. Kate looks clueless. Or she is on some serious little helpers pills

    • BeanieBean says:

      Yeah, they’re really showing the stress now with these dress up photos. All is not well in Fairytale Land.

  24. MizJ says:

    So… more offensive than charm

  25. C says:

    LOL, I guess Lisa Hanna read Ku Klux Dan’s piece because she came back with the best op-ed. As in “I could care less about your Duchess so I didn’t snub her; now pay us.”

  26. Ceej says:

    I can now never unsee her flag cosplay.
    It has ruined me.

  27. Caro says:

    Can we talk about how Kate seems to be getting lip filler?

    I thought it was just a weird mouth position or something, but in several photos now from this tour her lips look just ever so slightly plumper.

    • BeanieBean says:

      Certainly that upper lip has been plumped up. I thought at first it was lip liner, but no, these photos make it very clear she’s now messing with her lips. Will we get a denial, as they did with the Botox?

  28. BeanieBean says:

    “I strongly agree with my father, the Prince of Wales, who said in Barbados last year ‘the appalling atrocities they bring forever stains our history’. First thing, we were wondering who he was going to plagiarize for this trip; turned out, it was his own father! Well, OK, he referenced him, but still. No original words? No personal thoughts on the subject? Second thing, who are the ‘they’ in the sentence, ‘…appalling atrocities they bring…’? It would be the English, right? The colonizers? Eh, we all knew it would be a disaster, this guy is such a lightweight & he has no qualms about displaying that to the world. He is truly clueless. Clueless and mean.
    ETA: just looked through the photos. Aw, look at our Katie & Billie, all dressed up in their little medals. How adorable.

  29. Kelly says:

    He might as well have stood up and said “sorry not sorry” – or “sounds like a you problem” He’s a total putz.

  30. TEALIEF says:

    Just a thought, how about a personal apology, hmm? I, William, am sorry for the horror brought to and bourne by these green islands and its people. Not as a representative of the state, not as prince, not on behalf of my antecedents and ancestors, not on behalf of my current family – the one I was born into, or the one I help to create. I’m sorry as a person who recognises facts and truth.

    This should be fairly easy since the British overuse “sorry” every day and all day long. It’s part of the cultural politesse and good manners to all and sundry.

  31. Brincalhona says:

    They seem to have mixed up pics of the Lamebridges with UK light entertainment stars of yesteryear Keith Harris and Orville.

  32. Cathy says:

    Leave the symbols of the Empire at home, you’ve just been sacked William. And while you are at it, leave the wife at home too? Such a good way to emphasize that you and your family aren’t needed is to have the wife appear in clothes that cost the same as a year’s wages for some people.

    Fools like this pair are just the reason why my family left England in the mid 1800s.

  33. Ksd9344 says:

    I’m wondering if Boris and his gang gave strict instructions not to apologize or discuss reparations? I imagine the Tories in the UK are not willing to have those conversations because it’s not just Jamaica but African countries and India as well. It opens a whole huge financial obligation. It seems the RF work in concert with the Tories and I can’t imagine this was not discussed. However, there are families in the UK who made their fortunes this way. I think Benedict Cumberbatch may be one. I read his mother wanted him to use a stage name to avoid publicizing their history. In any event the world needs to discuss reparations and slave holding families also need to contribute not just governments if they are able. It’s time for monarchies to go. No one is better than others by right of birth. It’s just silly. And living in a bubble leads to these embarrassing tours, remarks, and photos.