Lawrie McFarlane: Let’s hope it works out for Harry and Meghan

Things, it seems, are spinning out of control. South of the border, U.S. President Donald Trump has been impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives, only the third time in history an American president has suffered that indignity. He joins Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton, though Richard Nixon would have been number four had he not resigned to forestall it.

Brit comedian Ricky Gervais stunned the entertainment world by turning his monologue at the Golden Globe awards into an all-out assault on his audience. With most of the Hollywood glitterati in attendance, he blasted them to their faces, some by name, for their pretensions of virtue, their sheer hypocrisy and their airs of self-importance.

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A sample: “You say you’re woke, but … if ISIS started a streamin’ service, you’d call your agent.” (Gervais drops his consonants.)

Clive James, the Aussie TV and movie critic, died last month. Known for his ferocious barbs, I doubt we’ll see his like again.

Thus, of Arnold Schwarzenegger: “A brown condom full of walnuts.” And of Barbara Cartland, a dreary Brit Conservative scold: “Twin miracles of mascara, her eyes looked like the corpses of two small crows that had crashed into a chalk cliff.”

Britain is leaving the European Union, and there are noises from Spain and Poland that they might be next. After Brexit we could have Spaxit and Poxit.

We might also have Wexit. It appears Elections Canada has granted Alberta’s Wexit party leave to run candidates in the next federal election. Their motto is “The West wants out.”

What they’ll get, by vote splitting, is four more years of Justin Trudeau.

Returning to the Sceptred Isle, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, a.k.a. the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have announced they are stepping back from their royal duties. They’ve hinted they might indeed surrender their titles and intend to live abroad at least part of the time. Megxit anyone?

Officially speaking, they glossed “abroad” as “N. America”. In fact, it appears they mean “Canada.” The couple recently spent their Christmas vacation on Vancouver Island, and seemingly found the quiet beauty charming.

In one respect, their departure is no surprise. Markle was frequently savaged by the tabloids in Britain, and, while she said some challenges were to be expected, she had always thought the process would be fair.

Good luck with that. Look what happened to Fergie or Diana. It’s impossible to join the Royal Family and avoid the never-ending dramas that surround its members.

After all, you just married into one of the most dysfunctional outfits on the face of the planet. Historically speaking, if there’s any disgrace this dynasty has failed to bring on itself, I can’t immediately think of it.

Even so, the British media are appalled (“shameless spoiled brats”, “rogue royals”, etc.). The Queen is said to be furious — apparently she wasn’t told in advance.

Though it appears, confronted with a fait accompli, she has resigned herself. This from the palace, “There will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the U.K.” Note the word “transition.”

What lies ahead is another matter. The couple say they intend to become financially independent. Unclear how that works.

Harry is said to have a net worth of between $25 million and $40 million. Does he intend to give it back?

And security experts say providing protection for the pair could run into the millions. If they do indeed come to live in Canada, do local taxpayers pick up that tab?

Then again, what kind of work can Meghan do? She was a moderately successful actor before they married. Is it possible to resume that role?

You can take the girl out of the Royal Family, but can you take the Royal Family out of the girl?

Nevertheless, it took courage to seek a life for themselves beyond the clutches of their imperious in-laws. For their sake, let’s hope it works.

jalmcfarlane@shaw.ca

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