The narcissism of Meghan Markle

Brendan O’Neill

Brendan O’Neill

30 August 2022

10:08 PM

    I’ve read some batty celebrity profiles in my time. But that piece about Meghan Markle in the Cut takes the biscuit. It is almost unbelievably preposterous. It shines a glorious if unwitting light on the narcissism and outright daftness of the right-on celeb set of which Ms Markle is now kween.

    Where to begin? How about with the basic set-up. We’re heading for a catastrophic energy crisis, with people forced to choose between heating and eating. And yet here’s Meghan in her multimillion-dollar luxury pad in California telling us how hard her life is.

    The Cut’s reporter – Allison P Davis – gushes over Harry and Meghan’s sprawling mansion. It is ‘the kind of big that startles you into remembering that unimaginable wealth is actually someone’s daily reality’, she says. It has nine bedrooms and 16 bathrooms. (Who needs 16 bathrooms?) And it is from here, draped in eye-wateringly expensive high fashion for the Cut’s photographer, that Meghan weaves her tragic tale of being trolled and bullied. Forgive me if I forget to cry.

    Just how hard is this duchess’s life? So hard she sometimes can’t even put it into words. She can only groan and wail. Seriously. In possibly the maddest part of the interview, Meghan suggests to Ms Davis that she might ‘transcribe the noises she’s making’. She tells Davis to write something like this:

    ‘She’s making these guttural sounds, and I can’t quite articulate what it is she’s feeling in that moment because she has no word for it; she’s just moaning.’

    ‘Just moaning’? You got that right, Meghan. That very thought crossed my mind as I read this demented piece. But can we just take a moment to contemplate the fact that the Duchess of Sussex advised an interviewer to document her guttural sounds? The cynicism of this is pretty extraordinary. Meghan’s behaving like a movie director, setting the scene of her own suffering, to secure the pity of readers. Perhaps in her next big interview she’ll fling herself on the bed and sob for all her sorrows and then ask her interlocutor, ‘Did you get that?’.

    Again, there’s that gaping disconnect from reality. Is the single mum who’s currently stocking up on cheap jumpers from Primark because she won’t be able to put the heating on this Christmas meant to feel sorry for speechless, moaning Meghan of Montecito? Read the room, Meg.

    A close second in the crazy stakes is when Meghan tells Davis about the time she met an actor from South Africa who said to her:

    ‘I just need you to know: when you married into this family, we rejoiced in the streets the same we did when Mandela was freed from prison.’

    I’m sorry, what? That Meghan is happy to share this anecdote is truly wild. It suggests she thinks there’s at least a kernel of truth in it. That her ascendancy into royalty as a woman of colour is not a million miles away from the time Nelson Mandela finally stepped into the sunlight of freedom.

    It’s hard to know what to say about this. Other than the screamingly obvious: moving into a massive palace with a prince is not like being released from 27 years of imprisonment. Meghan seems to labour under the delusion that she’s a royal Rosa Parks, striking a blow for civil rights by getting hitched to an HRH.

    For me, though, the most disturbing part of the interview is Meghan’s claim that some people, unnamed, used the N-word about her children. She’s complaining about the fact that members of the royal family who want to release photos of their children have to do it through the Royal Rota – that is, the press pool that covers royal issues. She would rather release such pics on her own terms, she says, perhaps via her own social-media sites. Then the killer line:

    ‘Why would I give the very people that are calling my children the N-word a photo of my child before I can share it with the people that love my child?’

    This is an incredibly serious allegation. Is Meghan suggesting that one of the reporters in the Royal Rota used that vile racial slur against her children? If so, she should say who it was. Or is she saying that the N-word was used somewhere in the British media more broadly? That just isn’t true. Not one media publication in this country would use such a disgusting word about a human being, let alone about a child.

    Maybe Meghan will characterise this as bullying too, but I think it is completely unacceptable for a royal person and influential figure to issue such serious and ill-founded charges against the British media. Stack up your claims, Meghan, or withdraw them.

    Who’s bullying who here? It strikes me that Harry and Meghan are doing a pretty good job of bullying the British media. From her palatial home in California Meghan hints to the world that the press in the UK is so gutter-like, so bereft of morality, that it even uses the N-word. We don’t. Stop defaming the free press.

    Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

    Published by Nelle

    I am interested in writing short stories for my pleasure and my family's but although I have published four family books I will not go down that path again but still want what I write out there so I will see how this goes

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