I was always a huge fan of Prince Harry.
That’s what Prince Harry said in 2007 when he was determined to be deployed to Iraq, even though some said it was too risky for a member of the royal family.
Who could not love a Prince who was so eager to serve his country?
For his part, Harry is on record demanding not to be treated like some china doll prince. He has reportedly threatened to quit the army if not allowed to eat Iraqi dust alongside his mates.
“There’s no way I’m going to put myself through Sandhurst and then sit on my arse back home while my boys are out fighting for their country,” Harry said in a rare, often-quoted and charmingly off-color interview marking his 21st birthday. “That may sound very patriotic, but it’s true.”
But that Prince Harry is gone, replaced by a virtue-signaling, cossetted twit. Prince Harry for example has just announced that in his royal efforts on behalf of saving the planet, he’ll only have two children.
Prince Harry’s revelation that he intends to only have two children for the sake of the planet is woke politics at its worst. As his critics have readily pointed out, if he truly believes that having fewer children will save the planet then why not stop at one child? As much as Harry might like us to believe that his decision comes at a great personal cost, he has simply adopted an ethical stance that best suits his lifestyle.
This made-to-measure approach to morality is everywhere these days: from so-called ‘flexi-veganism’ to the long-haul flights enjoyed by some supporters of Extinction Rebellion. It enables people to signal virtue without having to change very much about the way they live. Harry’s seemingly selfless attitude to the national birth rate is a classic example: many people settle on two as the ideal number of children and it isn’t because of any great concern for the climate; all the practicalities of modern life, including the trend for having children when we are older, mean that two is typically seen as the ideal number. Whether unconsciously or not, Harry has found a way to have his cake and eat it, taking the moral high ground with minimal impact to his own choices.
The Duchess of Sussex’s recent Vogue cover is a further embodiment of this new definition of morality. The message behind her choice of cover stars was clear: you are moral not because of what you do but because of who you are – be it female, transgender, black or freckled. This cuts to the heart of how the Sussexes seem to want to approach their royal role: rather than earn the public’s respect through national service, it’s simply about having a voice on the issue of the day.
Take a look at Harry’s newfound environmental fervour. Only last week, he called buying fruit in plastic packaging “a dirty habit”; he held up Waitrose as an example of a supermarket who was championing plastic reduction. So far so progressive. But there’s a problem with Harry’s moral missives. For a large portion of the population, it’s not financially viable to switch supermarkets or send a staff member out in search of plastic-free food. Again, his message conveniently fits his own lifestyle, while failing to chime with ours.
Rossiter points out that for many switching supermarkets or sending an aide out to shop for plastic-free food isn’t feasible.
She also points out that the Sussexes are not likely to stop using jets as that would actually interfere with their lifestyles.
Before we blame the Duchess, that's no fair. If she is Harry’s Svengali, he should still stop and think about what he is now saying.
The Queen has always avoided politics and given the impression (rightly, I like to believe) that she can sympathize with ordinary people.
That this kind of virtue signaling would reach the pinnacle of English society is just another example of how prevelent and powerful it is.