Jamaican media: The discourse around the Sussexes’ visit is ‘toxic & hateful’

One of the most astounding things about the British media’s lunatic hate campaign against the Duke and Duchess of Sussex is that the British media does not understand that the rest of the world can see what they’re doing. Every time they throw a tantrum about Harry and Meghan attending a premiere or shaking hands with a country’s prime minister, we can see it. The British media says some truly crazy sh-t solely for their domestic audience, forgetting that, say, Jamaicans notice when the Mail or the Mirror puts Bob Marley’s family in the Sussex crossfire. Britain’s deeply colonialist and downright “possessive” attitude towards Jamaica this week is appalling, racist and antiquated, and all of those salty people have really shown their asses just because Harry and Meghan (two private citizens) went to a premiere in Jamaica. Well, a Jamaican outlet (Jamaica Live) has had enough. They published this piece online:

The recent appearance of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, at the “Bob Marley: One Love” movie premiere in Jamaica has stirred up a whirlwind of controversy in the International media and among royal commentators. This visit, encapsulating a moment with Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness, has served as a flashpoint in discussing the intricate relationship between the British monarchy and the former colonial territories seeking to redefine their political identities.

In what was supposed to be a star-studded night to celebrate the legacy of Bob Marley, Harry and Meghan’s presence at the premiere turned into an intense political discourse surrounding anti-monarchist sentiment and the quest for full sovereignty within Jamaica. Caught in the midst of this political and media storm is Prime Minister Andrew Holness. His willingness to pose alongside the Sussexes—figures moving away from traditional royal roles—has earned him an anti-monarchy label from critics.

The British Royal Family has long been a subject of fascination and scrutiny by both the British public and the international community. However, in recent years, the treatment of Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle has taken a particularly vicious turn. Following the announcement of their relationship, the media appeared to show an unhealthy interest in Meghan, which quickly degenerated into a litany of hate. Tabloids amplified negative and unfounded stories, often based on racist or misogynistic undertones that aimed to discredit and undermine the couple. This led to increased scrutiny and racist abuse from the public, making their lives almost unbearable.

The British tabloid press has a history of targeting royal family members who are seen as controversial, such as Princess Diana, and they have continued this pattern with Meghan and Harry. However, to an unprecedented level, tabloids have deliberately manipulated the public discourse surrounding the couple to make it increasingly toxic and hateful. This hateful campaign landed on the doorstep of Jamaica.

Jamaica, a former British colony and current Commonwealth realm, finds itself at an ideological crossroads as it grapples with its colonial past and visions for a self-determined future. In the wake of dynamic shifts in global power relations and heightened sensitivity towards historical injustices, the discussion surrounding colonial legacies has never been more pertinent. Prime Minister Andrew Holness’ stance on transforming Jamaica into a Republic is a reflection of an emerging trend within former colonies that seek to redefine their identities independent of their colonial past.

The Sussexes were among a number of dignitaries and celebrities who attended the selective viewing of the Marley movie. They attended the movie premier with Paramount Film Chief Brian Robbins and his wife Tracy James. The meet and greet with Prime Minister Andrew Holness, Prince Harry and wife Meghan Markle, was a matter of informal decorum while engaging with other guests on the red carpet.

According to our source, The Sussexes are friends with Ziggy Marley and Kevin Frazier who is the host of Entertainment Tonight. Frazier was also in attendance of the premier and interviewing guests on the red carpet.

Despite the obvious informal nature of the meeting between The Sussexes and Prime Minister Andrew Holness, this did not stop the predatory British Press to turn this joyful event and celebration of the life and legacy of Bob Marley, into a hateful political firestorm.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, royal commentator Phil Dampier condemned the couple’s move, labeling it as “insensitive.” According to Dampier, ‘Under normal circumstances there would be nothing wrong with them going to a film premiere. But at a time when his father is going under the knife and Jamaica is making noises about ditching the monarchy, this is rather insensitive.’ Noting, this was not a formal event, and The Sussexes were not invited by the Prime Minister of Jamaica. Additionally, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are not working royals and can go wherever they please.

Jamaica’s journey towards becoming a Republic is rooted in it’s desire for an absolute self-governance, free from the vestiges of external control. Andrew Holness’ political trajectory, focusing on the transition of Jamaica from a constitutional monarchy to a Republic, underscores a democratic urge to redefine Jamaica’s head of state as a true reflection of it’s independent status. The characterization of this movement as “anti-monarchy” denies the legitimate and democratically supported aspirations of the sovereign people of Jamaica to take full control of their political destiny.

[From Jamaica Live]

All of this is completely correct. I’ll add something else – the Sussexes’ warm greeting with Andrew Holness reflected their ability to simply not make asses out of themselves (unlike Will and Kate). A huge chunk of the “outage” about Harry and Meghan’s trip to Jamaica is that they genuinely showed Britain how easy it could have been for them to be the monarchy’s brightest ambassadors, using their soft diplomacy and charisma for the good of the UK. Everyone over there, throwing hissy fits about Jamaican leaders being “anti-monarchy” are missing the fact that Holness was democratically elected, and when Jamaica becomes a republic, it will be because of a democratic vote.

This clip is UNHINGED.

They’re really mad about H&M’s visit to Jamaica pic.twitter.com/06p6b0X2EN

— Jaevion Nelson (@jaevionn) January 26, 2024

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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