Meghan Markle was seen in Texas where 19 schoolchildren were killed, but the photos raise some uncomfortable questions.
Anyone else remember forget-me-nots? It was September 1, 2020 when photos of newly minted Californians Harry and Meghan, Duke and Duchess of Sussex emerged planting forget-me-not seeds at a nursery school in Los Angeles to mark their mother Diana, Princess of Wales’ anniversary. ‘ death.
We know all this because the couple released touching footage of the walk, showing them surrounded by young children as they created a bed of the tragic princess’s favorite flowers on the walk, which almost moaned at how despotic the symbolism and pathos were.
The same confluence of Meghan, camera lenses and other people’s children is making headlines again after the 40-year-old mother of two flew three and a half hours from her home to visit Uvalde, Texas, where 19 schoolchildren were killed earlier this year. . a week of action.
“Meghan embarked on a journey as a mother to offer her personal condolences and support to a community going through unimaginable grief.” Peoplewho has a tricky knack for getting the scoop of the inside of Sussex reported.
The phrase would have been easier to swallow if she hadn’t decided to “express her condolences” right in front of the crowd of photographers and cameras stationed at the memorial to the young victims, and if her presence hadn’t immediately reverberated on those around her. social networks and news agencies.
Let me just say, I have no doubt that her heart hurts, as does millions of others in the US and around the world, at the thought of such an unspeakable loss. What is non-negotiable is how sincere or strong her feelings can be. Not on the list.
But what’s deeply problematic is that this trip looks awfully like trying to use an unimaginable tragedy for her own PR.
The big question here is what does Meghan think will happen when she arrives in Texas? She’s far from a child in the woods when it comes to understanding how the press works, and of course she should have known that her presentation in a small Texas town would always set off a media storm and be a major distraction from the game’s bigger issues. .
So why go? What does she think she could accomplish by going there?
This was not the moment when Meghan’s presence could help highlight an overlooked issue or draw national media attention to a forgotten community.
It is worth noting here that President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, as well as other prominent Texan celebrities such as Matthew McConaughey, who contemplated running for governor, stayed out of the city in the immediate aftermath of the horrific murders. (On Friday, it was announced that the Bidens would travel to Texas this coming Sunday to “mourn with the community.”)
There are plenty of generous and smart ways Meghan could use her reach and wealth to support the Uvalde community that didn’t require her to be the star of the show.
How about using some of the $140 million that Netflix may end up paying the couple to make a significant donation to any number of charities and organizations working on gun control reform.
Everytown is “a movement of moms, dads, students, survivors, educators, gun owners and concerned citizens” trying to tackle gun violence – why not just give them a huge check and encourage their supporters to follow suit?
The question also arises, why now? Where was the duchess last week when ten people were killed in a supermarket in Buffalo, New York?
There were 26 school shootings in the United States before the devastating events in Uvalde this year. Never before has gun violence been the cause the Duke and Duchess spoke of.
Then there is the issue of Netflix. FROM Page six it was revealed last week that Harry and Meghan had agreed to something that sounds conspicuously like a reality show (sorry, the correct nomenclature here is “home with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex” style docu-series), TV cameras are also traveling with Meghan ?
Will we be tearfully watching close-ups of Meghan months from now as she talks about her heartbreaking mission of mercy to Ulwada? (At the time of writing daily mail reported that it was “unclear” if the Duchess accompanied the streaming giant’s team.)
At first glance, Meghan’s visit looks a lot like Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge’s, in March 2021 to pay tribute to the memorial to murdered woman Sarah Everard, but a closer look makes that argument fall apart.
Most egregiously, the only images of Kate we have were taken by those in the crowd at the memorial on their phones and show her walking with her head down and deliberately laying flowers.
Meanwhile, Uvalda has a veritable smorgasbord of high-definition Meghan shots, thanks to the fact that the world’s biggest photo and news outlets were already working on the memorial she visited.
One video posted to social media shows how close the snappers got to the Duchess. Given that her head of security, Alberto Alvarez, was around, according to daily mailand she could certainly intercede here, the most obvious conclusion was that she had no problem with the photographers who came so close.
(Another difference is that Sarah Everard was abducted from an area just 15 minutes away from the Cambridge Kensington Palace residence, so for Kate it was literally close to home.)
Also while in Texas, Meghan visited a local community center where blood was collected and where she donated food. “She didn’t want anyone to know who she was,” a volunteer there said. Mail.
How plausible is this? She is one of the most famous people on the planet. Did she really think she might show up without being recognized? She could also order pallets of food and water to be delivered to the community center without ever approaching the press.
The Sussexes have a good track record when it comes to supposedly private moments that cross over into the public sphere. In August 2020, they volunteered at the Baby2Baby event in Los Angeles, handing out school supplies, and brought their own photographer with them to capture their help.
Then, in November of that year, they hosted their own Memorial Day DIY service, laying flowers at two Commonwealth War graves in Los Angeles with a professional sniper in tow.
Her own husband spoke of the complexities of grief last year, speaking of the massive outpouring of anguish over his mother’s death: “(I) showed one-tenth of the emotions that everyone else showed: that was my mom – you never even met her.” I was so angry at what happened to her and that there was no justice at all. Nothing came of it.”
As the saying goes, charity starts at home. In this case, perhaps it would be better if mercy also stayed at home.
Daniela Elzer is a royal expert and writer with over 15 years of experience working with a range of leading Australian media outlets.