Archive for December 30, 2022

Dear Harry and Meghan,

December 30, 2022

I hope your Christmas in Santa Barbara, if you are still there, went well for you and the kids. I can tell you that I have almost finished watching your Netflix interview series. I am very sympathetic, given the way the racist, reactionary British press has harrassed you.

Your experience has also shown beyond a doubt that social media is to good journalism what a shit sandwich is to a gourmet dinner.

But I remain confused as ever about the fascination with the British monarchy. Why do reporters and photographers dog you and make large sums of money for a picture of you walking through an airport. We already know what you look like!

If this were 300-400 years ago, I would get it. Kings and Queens were heads of state. They were the focus and the pinnacle of an aristocratic system of landowning and governance. They commanded armies.

But today? England has a parliament and a prime minister and the resulting bureaucracy. Yet they still have these descendants of war lords living on the public dime and taking up space. I don’t really understand why we spend time talking about them.

No offense.

I have some ideas about this. Maybe the royal family exists so that reporters with no integrity can make up stories about you and turn you into cartoon characters. Clearly some people find that entertaining. The weird marriage that exists between the royals and the media was one interesting point, brought up in the documentary.

Maybe this is no different from the American worship of Hollywood stars who live in mansions. But movie stars have nothing to do with government and they don’t maintain some American commonwealth. They act like children and say outlandish things, and it doesn’t matter. They aren’t there to embody a nation.

There was lots of talk about the future of the “institution,” which is what the Monarchy has come to be called. The Brits have been bending over backwards to maintain the relevance of the institution and maybe it’s time to cut it loose.

So, Meghan and Harry, I hope you are doing well in SoCal. It’s pretty awesome here, I will confess. I know you are also pretty down on the monarchy yourselves, so the next time some idiot with a camera tries to take your photo tell him to get a real job. Speaking of which, I hope you two have managed to find work.

TomF