Members of the royal family should know better than to marry American women of an eventful past and objectionable politics.
Or, to be on the safe side, any American women full stop. It may be impossible for an American to fathom the ethos of an institution going back many centuries.
Some 80 years ago one such marriage caused a constitutional crisis and almost put paid to the British monarchy.
Given the choice between his country and lurv, Edward VIII chose the latter. He abdicated and married a twice-divorced American woman who tickled his naughty bits with a virtuosity honed in Chinese brothels.
To be fair, it wasn’t just sexual compatibility but also political commonality that lay at the foundation of that luv: both HRH and Wallis shared admiration for the wonderful things Hitler was doing in Germany.
Unlike Wallis, however, HRH had – or rather should have – imbibed with his mother’s milk a sense of royal duty. He should have known that kings’ lives aren’t entirely their own.
Realms no longer belong to their monarchs, but monarchs do belong to their realms. Their undivided loyalty is pledged to their country, their people and their dynasty.
Hence lurv shouldn’t be a primary consideration in their choice of bride, nor even a secondary one. The only criterion should be the extent to which the marriage would contribute to the duty of service.
Prince Harry’s marriage can’t be as potentially damaging to the monarchy as the Duke of Windsor’s was – for the simple reason that, barring some catastrophe, Harry will never be king.
But, regardless of how low he is in the succession pecking order (Harry is currently sixth), he’s still the Queen’s grandson – and his wife is Her Majesty’s granddaughter-in-law. Hence their marriage has far-reaching ramifications for the realm and its constitution.
Our constitution blended with custom limits the extent to which royal personages can vent their political views – to my occasional regret.
I’d dearly love to know, for example, how Her Majesty felt in 1992, when the Maastricht Treaty set her on a path at the end of which she was going to become Elizabeth Windsor, EU citizen. But she won’t tell us because she can’t.
Prince Charles is rather more loquacious, but he too limits his public self-expression to marginal matters, such as the horror of our architecture or the plight of our environment. He steers clear of hot political issues and, though one could guess what his politics are, one can’t know for sure.
With the Duchess of Sussex, there’s no doubt whatsoever. She’s an American actress who, in common with most of her colleagues, subscribes to every hare-brained ‘liberal’ fad – without realising how crushingly illiberal they all are.
And being a celebrity, particularly an American one, she feels entitled to share her views with a public still drooling over her steamy scenes in Suits.
Hence, when visiting City University of London, the freshly baked duchess felt duty-bound to suggest that its curricula be “decolonised”. Implicit in that suggestion is her disapproval of the British Empire.
She is of course entitled to her opinion – as a private person. But as a very public member of the family that presided over that empire, she should keep that view to herself.
But what exactly does she mean by decolonisation? Well, for one thing, she wants British universities to devote as much attention to black studies and some such as American universities do.
Universities, said Meghan, should “open a debate” to avoid “continuing with the daily rote” because “sometimes that approach can be really antiquated and needs an update.” By inference, she’s the one to update it.
Meghan, do you have a feeling you’re not in Hollywood anymore? Academic affirmative action, shoving down students’ throats subjects of dubious academic value, has wreaked havoc on American universities, devaluing most BA degrees to a status of, at best, high school diplomas of yesteryear.
The same trend is under way in Britain, if at a slightly slower pace. We have an ample supply of our own intellectual saboteurs, thank you very much.
Given her background, Meghan may not realise this, but our civilisation has been predominantly created by white men – at least they are the ones who have made visible contributions to it. Women and non-white races have had a role to play, but, to put it in Meghan’s language, those were mostly support roles and often walk-ons.
If someone wants to study, say, African culture, he should be able to do so, and I’m sure we can all learn quite a bit about the human condition that way. But such courses belong at the margins of academic curricula in a Western university.
The worst was still to come. When shown the demographic breakdown of British professors, Meghan gasped “Oh my God!”
That religious utterance came straight from puerile tweets and it reflected a puerile emotion. To her horror Meghan realised that only 8.5 per cent of British professors are black or minority ethnic (BME).
Considering that blacks make up about 3.5 per cent of the population, that proportion doesn’t strike me as particularly unjust, even though the overall BME proportion is higher. But that’s not the point.
For lying behind Meghan’s OMG are two notions that, out of chivalry and respect for the royal family, I’ll only call misconceived.
First, in the good tradition of her profession and her ideology, she clearly believes that the demographic makeup of any institution should faithfully reflect the demographic makeup of the population.
Second, in the same fine tradition, she also believes that any disparity has to be caused by discrimination, in this case of the racial kind. In other words, BME persons only occupy 8.5 per cent of academic positions because bigoted whites keep them out.
The picture she has in her mind’s eye is that of a brilliant black academic losing a job to a less qualified white because the university administrators are all honorary Ku Klux Klan members who hate blacks.
Now if Meghan thinks for a second that something like that can happen at a British (or for that matter American) university often enough to affect the statistics, she’s away with the fairies.
She should really study this at greater depth than that of a Hollywood sound bite. This endeavour would take some time and effort because the issue impinges on numerous disciplines, such as history, sociology, culture, philosophy, political theory etc.
Meghan could do worse than begin by reading the books by the American sociologist Thomas Sowell (himself incidentally black). Perhaps then she’ll learn that no institution in the world ever mirrors the overall population demographics – disparities are always present.
In today’s West these are hardly ever caused by bigotry and discrimination. On the contrary, employers bend over backwards trying to attract as many BME employees as possible.
But then, like all her co-ideologues, Meghan isn’t against discrimination as such. She’d be perfectly happy even if it could shown convincingly that the proportion of BME dons could only be increased by discrimination against better-qualified whites.
But even if she were to study the complex issues involved and then undergo a Damascene experience, she should still follow the advice in the title above.
She’s not a Hollywood starlet anymore. She’s a member of a vitally important institution and should act accordingly.