Help! Why is it that there is never enough time? I shouldn’t really be writing this at all but OCD, as I am, I planned to, so I will. Added to that, we are on the brink of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, don’t you know, and the return of Meghan and Harry. Blood pressure rising!
To be honest, I’ve been primed since last Thursday following the footage of Meghan in Uvalde, Texas on her ‘unannounced’ visit to pay her respects at the memorial to the 19 children and two teachers, innocent victims of the indiscriminate shooting at Robb Elementary school on Tuesday, 24th May. Apparently, she attended ‘in a personal capacity, as a mother’. How wonderfully compassionate. Why is it, then, that I remain unconvinced? Unconvinced of the integrity of a woman whose hypocrisy is only dwarfed by her ego. Where to start? How about her mode of transport from her Montecito mansion – complete with 16 bathrooms, remember – to Texas? Budget airline? Laughable. This is the Duchess of Sussex, after all, eco-warrior extraordinaire who believes she and her ventriloquist’s dummy can lecture the world’s minions on the consequences of their carbon footprint while doing the complete opposite herself! Then, there is their quest for privacy … Oprah, Netflix, Spotify. Just living the quiet life in California. All about mental health, right? Wrong. It’s all about money and fame.
So it is that, in the wake of this atrocity, Meghan travelled to Texas, dressed down and ‘unannounced’, to pay her respects to the fallen children and their teachers complete with bodyguard and cameras. The footage shows her kneeling to place flowers – burly detective behind – before walking towards the cameras seen in wait. Neflix? Reminiscent of Kate walking to Clapham Common, along with everyone else, to lay flowers at the memorial for Sarah Everard in March ’21? Don’t be ridiculous. The thought never crossed Meghan’s mind … She, then, climbs into a black ‘monster truck’ more fitting for Kanye West! Subtlety her strong point. Nobody saw me, did they? More like, “Did you get that?”! Meanwhile, context. Thomas Markle was hospitalised on 23rd May having suffered a massive stroke. Less than a four-hour drive from Montecito, Meghan chose to fly to Texas … Own goal or what? Let me add, however, that nobody knows the truth behind Meghan’s estrangement from her father. Whatever the reason, there is great hurt in such a rift – and, never doubt, there, too, is a propensity for great lies. Believe me. All too easy to judge, wrongly.
Right, apologies but, watching the News Review on This Morning, today, I could not catch the name of the black female journalist (?) in the studio, nor was it on screen. However, discussing the imminent return of Harry and Meghan, I had to reach for my pen when I heard the following:
‘I know a lot of women across the country who see Meghan as an icon, you know, a great activist, you know, a warm mother who loves everyone and, you know, their charity helps millions around the world. Em, let’s not forget that.’
Then, again, perhaps better that she does remain nameless … A warm mother who loves everyone and their charity helps millions around the world? Seriously? I’m not sure what this woman does but she, certainly, enjoys fiction. I hate to state the obvious but I haven’t heard one black woman criticise Meghan Markle, ever, other than Candace Owens who, refreshingly, does not spend her life being a colour. For, seemingly, it is an unspoken sisterhood and, Meghan can do no wrong. Her colour excuses her behaviour, no matter what. Bullying, behaving like a prima donna, just being difficult, in general? All irrelevant. She was a victim of racism. The public – and the media – turned on her because of the colour of her skin. End of. Poor, innocent Meghan. Yawn! Yawn!
Coffee in hand, I remained seated to watch the next item which, ironically, was a genuine story of triumph over racism: that of Norwell Roberts, the first post-war black officer to join London’s Metropolitan Police Force in 1967. Arriving in this country from the West Indies in 1956, he grew up, with his mother, in Bromley, Kent. He passed his 11 plus but was told he could not be given a grammar school place as he had to learn ‘English ways’ … On joining the Met, he was bullied from the start, his reporting sergeant telling him, on his first day at Bow Street, ‘Look, you, Nxxxer, I’ll see to it that you never pass your probation!’ Fast forward thirty years, however, and Norwell Roberts was to become a Detective Sergeant, awarded the Queen’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service, to boot. Asked why he didn’t give up, he replied that, if he had, the bullies would have won. In his words:
‘I think, in life, we need to learn to laugh at ourselves – and I’m fortunate that I could laugh at myself. It helped me a lot.’
Funny thing is, I don’t see Norwell Roberts as a black man because he doesn’t. He is so much more than that. Not for him to play the victim. Yes, he was the target of racism but that only made him more determined. Colour would not define him – and it didn’t. It doesn’t. He has written a book entitled ‘I am Norwell Roberts’. Not an ounce of bitterness nor anger, he carries no chip. Instead, proud of his achievements, he has earned respect. I think I will buy his book. I know someone else who should, too!
People. Same hand. Different handling. Victim or victorious. Hypocrite or hero. The complexities of the human race in an increasingly mad world. A world in which a portrait of the Queen has been unveiled, courtesy of a robot! Why? One in which it is, now, possible to obtain a pizza from a vending machine in Portsmouth. Perfect. Another tool in the fight against obesity. Then, the pièce de résistance in the words of Johnny Depp’s triumphant attorney, Benjamin Chew, outside the court room, this evening:
‘We were honoured, truly honoured, to assist Mr Depp in ensuring that his case was fairly considered throughout the trial. We were also most pleased that the trial has resonated for so many people who value truth and justice.’
Run for the hills! Honour? Where was this guy?! This libel trial – Johnny Depp suing his ex-wife, Amber Heard – portrayed depravity in the extreme. An insight into the lives of two self-indulged, self-obsessed, violent and obscene individuals who never have, nor ever will know honour. Remember Tom Cruise’s line at the end of ‘A Few Good Men’, ‘You don’t need to wear a patch on your arm to have honour’? Well, he sure as hell wasn’t talking about them!
‘Act well your part
There all the honour lies.’
Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man.
This is Trish, Signing off.