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Prince Harry and Meghan — what’s next?

By Jenn Gorrie, February 4 2020 —

The announcement of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, stepping back from royal duties has caused an uproar of uncertainty of what could happen next. The question everyone needs to ask themselves however, is “Why does this matter?” 

To answer in short — it really doesn’t. Keeping up with the royal family as a Canadian is the equivalent to catching up with the latest tabloid drama involving the Kardashians. It is all for entertainment. 

No matter the generation you were born in, most can admit to having a guilty pleasure of wanting to catch up with certain celebrities’ lives. This habit can be rather brain-numbing, and overall does little to nothing for us. The information is not relevant to our everyday lives. 

If you pay attention to how the government is run in Canada, it seems as though the royal family has no significance other than just upholding tradition. We learned throughout high school that Canada has been under British rule since 1763 and became self-governing in terms of domestic affairs in 1867, but that’s pretty much it. 

Now if the decision of the Sussexes’ departure impacted the Canadian government, I would have a different response entirely. Instead, the information spreading online heavily focuses on why there is a sudden need for the couple’s departure and the royal family’s response to the news. 

Even though Queen Elizabeth is known for making some decisions in the United Kingdom — as well across the world — she and her family are also sworn to be completely impartial. Everything that we learn moving forward from this is just family drama made public and that should not affect any future decision-making. 

The story seems to unfold daily as to “what will happen next,” but what I think everyone seems to forget about is that Prince Harry has never wanted to be part of the spotlight. Since the birth of their child, the couple has been scrutinized heavily, and some point fingers at Markle’s previous career as an actress in an attempt to discredit her. 

Sure, the stepdown from royal duties comes with the perk of trying to attempt a more private life. But we should not quickly sweep over the past incidents throughout the years involving Prince Harry. 

Cosmopolitan shared a brief summary online, as to Prince Harry’s top ten scandals that painted him as a “Royal Bad-Boy.” Keep in mind, Cosmopolitan is an entertainment magazine that focuses strictly on entertainment instead of news. 

The scandals are just a simple Google search away, and all took place before Prince Harry had a relationship with Markle. Cosmopolitan’s website just briefly shared some occasions where Prince Harry had stripped down naked in Vegas, as well as citing a different event where he drank Champagne out of a prosthetic leg. 

Since meeting Markle back in 2016, his behaviour has changed significantly. Could it be that maybe all he needed was to be in the right relationship to encourage him to settle down? If someone knew nothing about the couple, especially about Prince Harry, discovering the news of Markle’s past career would be a valid reason to blame her for the couple’s departure. 

I find that whenever women are represented in the media by being involved with a scandal, it is rarely broadcast with good intentions. But whether Markle’s former career had some influence on the couple’s decision to leave, I don’t think the two stepping down from the spotlight will soon lead to her starring in the next major film — or at least right away.  

Instead the drama will die down shortly when the couple is settled, and everyone will be focused on something else. 

This article is part of our Opinions section and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Gauntlet’s editorial board.

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