Mark Andrews on Saturday: Progressive role for Meghan and Harry
Read today's column from Mark Andrews.
Imagine a footballer wanted to leave his club. But instead of handing in a transfer request to the manager, he issued a statement to the television news channels. Do you think it would go down well?
And instead of simply saying he wanted to quit completely, he planned to ‘make a transition to carve out a progressive new role’, remaining on the club’s payroll while he ‘works to become financially independent?’
Quite. So whatever made the Duke and Duchess of Sussex think they could get away with it?
If Harry and Meghan want a normal life, away from the royal spotlight and without the trappings of royalty, then fair enough. It can’t be much fun spending your entire life behind a security cordon, having Special Branch accompany you to the toilet, and smiling sweetly while local worthies drone on at terminally tedious functions. I certainly wouldn’t want it.
What is difficult to stomach is the way they have gone about it. The self-indulgent language you might expect a Hollywood luvvie to come out with. And the sheer effrontery of expecting the taxpayer to maintain their jet-set lifestyles while they ‘work towards financial independence’.
Maybe somebody should remind them that most of us have little option but to embrace ‘financial independence’. And if you quit your job, there is no ‘transition’ to ‘carve out a progressive new role’. It’s called living within your means.
Britain benefits hugely from having a constitutional monarchy, as opposed to a political head of state. Not only does it raise Britain’s standing in the world, but it also provides an apolitical arbiter to ensure no political leader can abuse their position.
But that comes with a caveat, that being that the Royal Family discharges its duties with dignity and maturity, and remembers it is there to serve the people, not become a slightly posher version of the Beckhams. The Queen has achieved this with some aplomb, William and Kate also appear to get it. Harry and Meghan would do well to learn from their examples.
YOU may also remember Harry delivering a lecture at an environmental summit in Sicily, reminding everybody of their duty to cut their carbon footprint. I wonder how he will achieve that now he plans to split his time between the UK and North America?
What will be interesting will be seeing how Harry and Meghan develop their “progressive new roles”.
Given his experience in the military, it would make sense for Harry to find a career in the security industry. Store detective at Morrisons, maybe, nightclub bouncer, or maybe a nightwatchman. Meghan, presumabaly, will go back to being a minor actress in an obscure legal drama, maybe topped up by the odd appearance on a tacky reality show. The Only Way is Sussex, anybody?
Would-be Liberal Democrat leader Layla Moran has declared herself ‘pan-sexual’. I don't know what that means, but it sounds very trendy. Does that mean she is attracted to dancers on Top of the Pops?