The Sussexes’ UK visit blasted as ‘chutzpah’ because it resembles ‘royal work’
When the Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced their brief September visit to the UK and Germany, I knew that things would go batty in the royal media, with lots of performative drama about “how dare they VISIT and do charity work!?!” What I didn’t expect is for the Daily Beast’s Royalist column to launch one of the hands-down craziest interpretations of the situation. Tom Sykes – the “Royalist” – wrote an entire column about how Harry and Meghan are violating the terms of their exit agreement with the Crown and they are in danger of being “punished” by the Windsors. The violation of their exit agreement is apparently… coming back to the UK and making some charity appearances. To the Crown, this charity work looks suspiciously like “royal work” and the Sussexes know full well that they were banned from doing royal work! Think of how insane this argument is. Some highlights from this Royalist column.
People are aghast that the Sussexes are visiting charities: Insiders are grumbling that Harry and Meghan are apparently positioning themselves as quasi-royals by undertaking charitable engagements in the style of the institution. Behind palace walls, the mood is one of weary resignation. While any irritation is being carefully tempered by an unwillingness to pour fuel on the fire, one source, a former Buckingham Palace staffer, told The Daily Beast: “The chutzpah of those two is unreal. Their proposal for being hybrid working royals was comprehensively rejected [at the Sandringham Summit], but it looks like they are just going ahead and doing it anyway.”
Buckingham Palace is tamping down drama? Queen Elizabeth’s office dismissed the suggestion that there was any irritation at the palace over Harry and Meghan’s visit. Sources at the palace have previously told The Daily Beast they were notified in advance of Harry and Meghan’s plans, but declined to specify how much notice they were given.
Duncan Larcombe complains: “To the casual observer, especially overseas and even more especially in America, this will look like Harry and Meghan are back doing royal jobs, especially given that one of the gigs Harry is doing is the WellChild awards for sick children, which he always used to do when he actually was a working royal. It will be incredibly high-profile. They will be all over the media, and you won’t be able to put a cigarette paper between what Harry and Meghan are doing and what Will and Kate are doing. It’s a calculated provocation on their part. They are seriously pushing their luck and risking the wrath of the queen.”
Christopher Andersen’s take on the Sussexes’ visit: “It makes perfect sense for Harry and Meghan to travel to the U.K. and Germany—these are three charities that are near and dear to their hearts. It makes just as much sense for the queen and the rest of the royals to want to steer clear of the Sussexes. The queen is unwilling to be seen as accepting any half-in, half-out role for Harry and Meghan. She said fish or cut bait—you’re either all in or all out—and she meant it.”
Service is universal: For Harry and Meghan, this visit seems to be very much about blurring the line between their royal and non-royal lives. Their argument—that they are simply helping worthy causes—echoes their rebuff to the queen, “We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.”
Breach of contract: This is where the palace has real grounds to call out Harry and Meghan for breach of contract. Whatever position one takes on their moral right to expose the royals’ alleged vile behavior towards Meghan or Harry’s decision to publish a memoir, it is hard to make the case that the public airing of grievances is a way to “uphold the values” of the queen. There is a compelling case to be made that Harry and Meghan have violated the exit agreement. If, for the sake of argument, one accepts this, the question becomes what sanctions the palace is now capable of imposing on them.
[From The Daily Beast]
Sanctions! Breach of contract! Violation of an exit agreement, like it was a formal document which could be upheld in a court of law! Such foot-stamping! “You promised you wouldn’t come back and take all of the attention away from the dull royals!” And the idea of punishing Harry and Meghan for daring to… do charity work. How dare Harry visit sick children, doesn’t he know that’s what Kate does once every three years! How dare Harry and Meghan speak to youths, don’t they know that William will be incandescent with jealousy? This just goes along with the idea that the Windsors believe that they alone have the franchise on “service.” The Windsors fundamentally do not believe that “service is universal,” nor do they accept that Harry and Meghan could be charitable people or humanitarians without their work being considered “royal.”
Photos courtesy of Instar.
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