Prince Harry Takes Legal Action Against Press In Defense Of Meghan Markle
By Emily Lee
October 1, 2019
Since marrying Prince Harry in 2018, Meghan Markle has been subjected to relentless criticism in the British tabloid press. From being shamed for eating avocado toast (yes, really) to being blamed for a reported fall out between her husband and Prince William, Meghan hasn't had an easy go of it as freshman royal. The Duchess of Sussex's private life has been invaded in a way few others royals' have since the media whirlwind surrounding Princess Diana. In a shocking turn of events, Prince Harry has revealed he will take legal action against the "ruthless" British tabloid press as he fears for his wife's safety and wellbeing.
Members of the royal family rarely address media and tabloid rumors, so Prince Harry released a meticulous statement detailing his decision to sue Associated Newspapers, the publishers of Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday in the U.K. After The Daily Mail published a private letter Meghan sent to her father ahead of her wedding, Prince Harry had enough of how Meghan was being treated. "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," the 34-year-old prince explains.
“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,” reads the beginning of Prince Harry's passionate statement, which was published on the SussexRoyal website.
"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," the statement continues. "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. The Duke of Sussex revealed his and Meghan's decision to seek legal action has been "many months in the making."
He then calls out the "double standards" of British tabloid press."This specific press pack that has vilified her almost daily for the past nine months...[has] 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."
As Harry pointed out earlier in the statement, traditional royal protocol prohibits members of the monarchy from speaking out against tabloid rumors. Now, though, Harry can no longer abide by that rule after watching the pain this has caused Meghan. "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," he explains. "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."
Ultimately, though, Prince Harry fears "history repeating itself" as Meghan continues to be vilified in the tabloid press. "I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditized 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."
Harry signs off his letter on an optimistic note, thanking the British publish for their continued love and support, which the Duke says "is hugely appreciated. Although it may not seem like it, we really need it."