What must the Queen think of the younger royals’ actions?
“Yet there is a feeling that, while the Queen deserves our respect, certain other members of her family should try harder. Much harder. There is a turbulence in the air, a contagion of bad behaviour that taints the good deeds and hard work of other royals, causing understandable resentment. These miscreants could do worse than follow the example of the Queen; this force of nature in pastel separates who has never put a foot wrong nor allowed selfish needs or creature comforts to impede her sense of duty.”
This excellent if sobering essay on the sense of duty and propriety of Her Majesty The Queen, as contrasted against the behavior of certain other members of the Royal Family, devotes – as its title would indicate – a fair amount of its space to pointing out the foibles of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, a.k.a. Prince Harry and the former Meghan Markle. As well it should.
HRH Prince Harry is a Royal for whom I have historically had a great deal of respect. His military service – in which, while serving in Afghanistan, he reportedly earned the respect of the U.S. Marines, which takes a certain amount of doing! – and his subsequent work with wounded warriors (particularly the Invictus Games, inspired by the U.S. Warrior Games) spoke highly of him. And let’s be honest, he seems to be a nice guy.
But his decision to hook up with Meghan Markle, for whatever unparsable reasons – probably the most stunning example of marrying down in the British Royal Family since King Edward VIII married Wallis Simpson – seems to have marked a turning-point in his public behavior, as well as my respect for his judgement.
Since then he has turned to questionable, “PC”/SJW causes, and living the high life with what appears to be nothing close to the ironclad sense of responsibility, decorum, prudence, and devotion to duty of his Royal grandmother. Perhaps he feels like he has nothing further to lose, having married so far from his station, and he may be right.
But although he cannot, like Edward VIII, abdicate his position, he could at least adopt a more discrete and lower-profile stance, and strive to place duty, dignity, and decorum somewhere closer to the center of his attention.
As the linked article points out, “Never in the course of royal history has so much public goodwill been squandered so quickly and so thoughtlessly.” It goes on to quote one former supporter who commented, “We had a garden party to celebrate Harry and Meghan’s wedding. Now I wouldn’t go to the end of the street to see them.”
It is true that, as noted above, “the monarchy is not in crisis. Not yet, anyway: polls show it’s as popular as ever. Yet there is a feeling that, while the Queen deserves our respect, certain other members of her family should try harder. Much harder.” The essay goes on to comment,
“In 67 years on the throne the Queen has managed to avoid the greasy clutches of con-men and the siren call of celebrity, always following her own wise counsel instead. Yet some of the younger members just will not heed her gold standards of propriety, whether through wilful arrogance or the inability to resist the largesse of empty men with deep pockets who yearn for prestige by proxy…
“Her Majesty’s unflagging popularity over the decades stems from her insistence that the Crown must always come before the person. While she is in charge, the public understand in their bones that in any conflict between her ego and national duty, the Crown will always win. That is one reason why there is so much trust and affection in our mutual relationship.“
That confidence is not felt – and with cause – when it comes to the younger generations of the Royal Family.
The problem is not limited to Meghan and Harry (may as well follow The Spectator, and put her name first, since she seems to be the driving force in the relationship), as this article points out. They are just – being young, photogenic, and very much in the public eye (and to the delight of the Leftist press, an example of “multiculturalism” within the British Royal Family) – the most visible faces of a more widespread, though by no means universal, issue within that Royal Family.
It would, I admit, be unrealistic to expect everyone, even in that notable family, to rise to the level of Her Majesty. Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-serving English monarch in history, is unique and exceptional, in many respects. Still, her children and grandchildren (by blood or marriage) could, as the essay comments, “try harder. Much harder.” I do sincerely hope and pray that they, following the example of their Royal Matriarch, will do so!