Meghan & Harry: The Real Issue That No-one is Talking About
Many have speculated, did Meghan and Harry do right in sharing their story. Did they ‘air their dirty laundry’? Were they picking up on tiny things and making them overblown? Is Meghan vindictive and scheming?
Maybe. And honestly we will never know the full extent of the truth — from either side.
But what we can be sure of is one thing. The referral to the “Comms people” and “the firm” has been whispered down through the ages. And their shadow covers every single woman who has ever dared to enter the Royal family.
Especially those that don’t play exactly by the rules.
So who are these people? Where have these women come unstuck? And what does this say about Meghan’s story?
Fergie, Diana, and Mrs Wallis
Fergie and Diana were friends. They were both young ladies marrying into royalty. They became a Duchess and a Princess respectively. Earning the love of the people with the paparazzi nipping at their heels.
They were a little wild, naturally. Diana’s ‘Hen Do’ caused quite the stir amongst the Royal institution, it was said. I’m sure there were a few pursed lips at breakfast the following morning. But as they settled into Royal life, their wild sides at rest.
But, in Fergies 1997 biography ‘My Story’ by Jeff Coplon, her battles with the “Grey Men” were outlined. Those who were reportedly out to destroy her name. She was talking of course of the advisors and courtiers of the palace. She admitted her part played in her divorce from Prince Andrew in 1996, but the Grey Men still made her life hell.
Diana was similarly heard commenting on the ‘men in grey’, and her rebellion against them. This is what caused her to wear the infamous revealing dress at a garden party in London’s Hyde Park in 1994.
The professed ‘People’s Princess’ was kind, caring and dutiful in her Royal duties. And yet she was consistently under pressure. Reportedly reprimanded by the advisors.
Perhaps due to the fact that she regularly outshone other members of the Royal family. Such was her genuine warmth, caring and beauty. Her humanitarian work and wealth of famous friends caused genuine jealousy in Prince Charles’ camp. And a lot of this stemmed from his advisors.
After her divorce from Charles, the media hounded her mercilessly. Her dating choices caused a stir, and she eventually paid with her life on the morning of August 31st 1997.
Mrs Wallis Simpson met Edward, Prince of Wales, in 1931. She was married at the time, to American Born Ernest Simpson, but divorced him in 1936 to marry Edward.
By this time, he was King of England.
That was enough reason to cause great scandal amidst the Royal family in this era. The courtiers took a great dislike to her, and she was painted very badly in the media. The British population took to hating her.
They believed her to be a vicious and scheming woman. She became ‘the reason’ the beloved King Edward abdicated the throne. This notion was spread liberally. Anna Pasternak, however, shed light on her true personality in a recent Tatler article. Many friends report Wallis as a warm and loving person.
The truth? Court officials viciously attacked Wallis because she was seen as a threat. And in turn set upon by the media, who are indeed in the Royal pocket. This is, according to some sources, where the term “the firm” came from.
The Firm, or “Monarchy PLC”
The history of the court advisors is long and winding. Too long to dictate here. But just watch the hit Netflix series The Crown, or any such film detailing specific Royal periods. In it, you are bound to see whispering ‘servants’ at the royal ear.
This is perfectly natural, given the Royal’s many engagements, events and travel plans. There has to be a team behind them. But This machine has been running for so long, it seems there has been a true shifting of power.
You could feel this when Harry mentioned that his father and brother were “trapped” in the system. You could see the sadness on his face as he spoke.
Often it is only once you are out of the binds of control, that you really see it for what it is.
Todays ‘court’ of advisors is apt to be very different from previous eras. The Queen reportedly has 8 private secretaries. They are on hand to give her direction and ‘help’ her rule the country.
But of course, this is predominantly dealt with in Government now. The Monarchy are largely for show, a British money spinner. And with this comes 1,000 years of protocol.
This cold and archaic word sets a tone for the lives lived amongst the Royal family. Everyone is under the gaze of these men, and there are countless to be sure.
The recent Forbes article, seems to be asking the right questions. Who are this shady group who move so freely around the family?
There more than 1,200 employees in Buckingham Palace alone. And the family own a whopping 16 properties throughout the UK, so the exact number of employees is huge! Within this organisation, there are a lot of CEO types at the top, keeping things running.
That Forbes article goes into far greater monetary details, if you’re interested…
With so many employees, it becomes harder to know just who is in charge, and who’s pulling strings.
Donal McCabe is head of the PR machine at Buckngham Palace. He was formerly Director of External relations at a betting company called Ladbrokes. One shudders to think of how someone who has made his money from a gambling business would use his talents.
Whether we like it or not, and regardless of how little we know about them, the men in grey are here to stay. But the women who infiltrate the family seem to nearly always be in danger.
And interestingly, this seems to have grown with the increasing autonomy of women the world over.
Female autonomy and vocalising mental health struggles is a recipe for disaster. It would seem. And we do have to question just what goes on behind the scenes.
In an age where women are increasingly speaking out about assault at the hands of men, we have to wonder. Is it right that these women suffer so much at the hands of a controlling corporate elite, and the media?
Why Are We Okay With This Level of Control?
Throughout her time with the Royal family, Meghan’s actions were dogged. In comparing Meghan to Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, media reports proved superbly graceless. A lesson in double standards.
Speaking with Oprah, Meghan commented on how she was targeted for bullying. Reports she says were unsubstantiated.
She told how the firm has given little to no support or protection throughout. How they never once stopped one of the pathetic tattle-tale pieces in the tabloids. Despite the close relationship between Monarchy and media.
Now, I have heard many people, some from my own family, state that she just had to suck it up and deal with it. The media would have mellowed to her in time. She just had to pay her dues
I’ve also shaming her because she refused to pose on the steps of the hospital for a picture with their new baby. Their first child.
Given the media’s treatment of her, I am not surprised. If that were me, I’d have flipped the V’s whilst walking down those steps!
Who knows what the media would have reported had she complied. Regardless of protocol, it seems she was doing a Diana. This was her extravagant revealing dress.
She showed her hand, and it was protecting her family.
This kind of treatment makes my blood boil. This is a woman who had, as she said in the Oprah interview, contemplated suicide just months before!
It is understandable to have protocols in the Royal machine. But protocol is not legally binding. And she had reason to reject the media.
Meghan’s timeline is shockingly aligned with Fergie, Diana and Wallis. For differing reasons. And yet her difference is this: she tried on the Royal life, found it awful, so left to save her mental health.
It is sad that Harry is no longer a part of the Royal family in a business sense, but he did what he had to.
As I’ve said, we can never know the true ins and outs of their lives. But Harry’s mother died at the hands of the press. If felt that his family was not being afforded protection by ‘The Firm’, he was right in wanting to leave.
Where Meghan and Harry Right to Tell Their Story?
This interview has formed a splintering set of interests. Where they just airing their dirty laundry in public? These seems like a churlish thing to talk about when there is so much more to comment on.
What about racism in the UK media, and issues around mental health. Piers Morgan’s bullying campaign.
But all this stems from the way in which the ‘Comms people’ (AKA ‘Grey Men’, AKA ‘The Firm’) do their business. Both with the family and the press.
Three women, Diana, Fergie and Meghan, spoke out about their mental health. Brave enough discuss how they suffered mentally under Monarchy rules. And each of them has named the people who stand behind the family as central to their struggle.
Wallis Simpson didn’t speak publicly about her struggles. But the Tatler article speaks volumes.
But, honestly, if we were talking about a wife living under the rule of a controlling husband, we would be up in arms. But we downplay it. Because it’s a posh British family, so things can’t be that bad.
Just because they have a privileged life, doesn’t mean they have to enjoy being controlled.
Say your freedom was suddenly stripped from you. Would you feel the walls closing in?
This is a short version of a very long history. Dating back centuries. And the advisors, aides and private secretaries have always been there. Holding privileged positions that involve much politics. So much is unknown about them. And whilst there are a few reports surfacing, my fear is that this will get brushed under the carpet. Again.
But when it does, the mental health of an entire family will go unreported. And the issue of control will recede into the background.
Which is fairly frightening in my book.