We all know now that Prince Harry and his wife Duchess Meghan have made their announcement on Instagram no less about their branching into a new role living between Canada and the UK . This announcement was made without any prior notice to the Queen, Harry’s grandmother and to his father Prince Charles. The Queen learned of Harry and Meghan’s plans watching the evening news on television. It is beyond word how disrespectful and hurtful to show such callous behaviour. Harry should know better it is after all his family, Meghan well I am not so sure coming from a very dysfunctional family.
Trouble was brewing since the marriage of this pair, Meghan comes from a very different background and culture and was obviously unprepared for a role within the Royal Family. Others like her had difficulties, think of Sophie Countess Wessex, Fergie Duchess of York and Diana, in comparison Meghan has had a easy time of it. I understand it is very difficult to understand how the institution of the Royal Family functions for a common mortal. However she was given support and her Father-in-Law Prince Charles was helpful and generous to her, the Queen also ensured that she was made welcome and allowed her to ease herself into the role of a Royal Family member.
There was plenty of trouble with staff and then with housing, moving from Kensington Palace to Frogmore Cottage after a 3 million pound renovation paid for by Grandmother the Queen. Meghan was dubbed difficult Meghan. Other problems surfaced when Meghan realized that her husband was not so important after all, now that Prince William and Catherine have 3 children, George, Charlotte and Louis. Harry is now 6th in line and very unlikely to ever become king. The Sussex are reduced to a role of representing the Crown, being nice, kind and helpful that is their role now. It is also obvious that Harry and Meghan do not like to be held to account. The Media noticed that they promote the environment but at the same time take private jets to their destinations. Harry is bored stiff by Official functions which are part and parcel of life at Court.
After getting their 6 weeks vacation on Vancouver Island in Canada to think and reflect based on preliminary discussions they had with Prince Charles, Prince William, the Queen and advisors on their future role and despite being told to be patient by the Queen at Christmas time while a formula was being devised to accommodate them, Harry and Meghan went ahead with their announcement. This matter is complicated because it involves funding despite their saying that they would be financially independent at this time their personal private wealth is about $45 million dollars US. There is also the matter of their security given that they are internationally protected persons, meaning that security detail must accompany them everywhere. That is also paid for by taxpayers. If they move to Canada or if they visit the USA who would pay?
Currently they were receiving the Sovereign’s Grant which covered 5% of their expenses and the rest came from Prince Charles through the Duchy of Cornwall. Now the Grant is gone and the portion paid by Charles is in jeopardy given that the British Government, Parliament and the public will have a word to say about it. Would taxpayers agree to fund a Prince who is no longer part of the institution? Not likely it has been reported this morning that 67% of Brits are against any monies coming their way now. You cannot only perform some functions part of the year and merchandize your brand, it would lead to conflict of interest charges. Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex tried it 30 years ago and it was a fiasco.
Meghan as of today is now back in Vancouver with baby Archie, which was left behind with his nanny and staff while the couple returned to London to make their announcement. There is no plans for her to return to the UK. Harry is now scheduled to meet with his father and later with the Queen who is said to be extremely upset. Many in the public are asking why is Her Majesty being put through this at her age, she will be 94 in April. Prince Philip is ill and 98, Harry refused to return to England at Christmas time to be with his grand parents. Many are asking who is advising Harry to behave in this fashion? Fingers are pointed at Meghan, there is really no one else to explain this change in him towards his family since his marriage.
Another important point that is being missed is that we are dealing here with a dynasty, lineage and succession is everything or the only thing. Many noticed on the Christmas Day message from the Queen, the pictures on her desk, her father King George VI, Prince Charles and Camilla, Prince William, Catherine and their children. In the background Prince Philip but no Harry or Meghan. The truth, the Sussexes are not that important anymore in the line of succession. Their role is very different from that of Prince William and Catherine. It is a simple reality and nothing to do with excluding anyone.
The latest photo issued by Buckingham Palace show that succession, in front of the Throne you have the Queen, Prince Charles who will succeed her, Prince William his son and heir and Prince George. That is the future, maybe this is what Meghan failed to understand, the rigidity of the system, a system that cannot be changed because it represents stability, continuity and tradition for the nation and the Commonwealth.
As for Harry and Meghan, whatever happens now, we can wish them good luck as they fade from public view. Many are predicting that it will not go well for them, you cannot divorce yourself from your family and like his great uncle the Duke of Windsor, Harry may find life to be very lonely on the outside.