Royal shakeup: who’s watching?


NOT SO CHARMING. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are getting out of the spotlight by stepping away from the monarchy, which is not as charming as it seems. This is unprecedented territory. Even so, does anyone in SHS care? The answer is no, if the average student is anything like freshman Nicole Payton who said, “I’m not really sure [what’s happening with the British monarchy]. I know someone left and someone else is made, but that’s about it.”

 Once upon a time, across the pond, there was a prince and princess who wanted to quit. Can they do that? Does anyone even care?

   Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are stepping away from the British monarchy, so they can live a quieter life outside the public eye. 

   The couple wrote in a statement on their Instagram, “After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen.”

   Essentially, they want to be taken out of the spotlight. Prince Harry and Meghan are often scrutinized by the media. They “have long chafed at the (often unfair) media attention surrounding them,” according to the New York Times

   The couple is leaving Britain and beginning an uncertain future in Canada or the United States. When they stepped away from the monarchy, they drew up an agreement. In this agreement, Prince Harry and Meghan will give up their titles (His Royal Highness and Her Royal Highness), no longer use public funding for activities, and repay $3 million they used to renovate their residence on the grounds of Windsor Castle. 

   They are charting unprecedented territory, and most news outlets have at least one story written about it. But 4,000 miles away does anyone care?

   When asked about what she knew about the status of the monarchy, freshman Nicole Payton said, “I’m not really sure. I know someone left and someone else is made, but that’s about it.” 

   Similarly, freshman Nabiha Alam said, “I know that Meghan Markle, like, made that guy step down.” Both girls know vague details about what is happening. 

   This is the case for the majority of high schoolers. Even with all the coverage, students do not know what is happening. Is this something they should know?

   That question is up for debate. According to TIME, “There is no true parallel in British royals history to what the iconoclastic pair are now trying to do.” That is why it is such a hot topic—it has never happened before. 

   Even so, besides the press coverage and possibly some tense royal dinners, not much has changed. Prince Harry is sixth in line for the throne, so he is not becoming king anytime soon. 

   Four thousand miles away, across the pond, history is being made. But do high school students care? The answer is no, if they are anything like Payton and Alam.