Monday, January 12, 2009

Today's press on Harry

Trying to fit in with the boys? Victim of today's "verbal break-out"? Or simply lack of intellectual acuity? The papers dissect Prince Harry's hideous behaviour.

The Sun
, sister paper of the News of the World which kicked off Prince Harry's latest scandal, are remarkably thorough on the affair. Whereas you'd have expected a busty Page Three girl to simply deliver a "Naughty Harry" while looking seductively at the camera, today's Sun instead contains a background article ('Never again Harry') along with six separate comments. Most are sympathetic to the Prince, including a linguistic professor arguing that such banter is "perfectly normal [...] amongst good friends or colleagues"! Maybe in his world. They won't print it, but the Prince most certainly provided the Sun with the perfect tabloid fodder.

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, in the Independent ('Harry you can't just say what you like'), makes the valid point that Harry is simply toeing the line with this "age of verbal break-out" punctuated by the glorification of the various Jonathan Rosses, Russell Brands, Big Brothers and other types of bullying. "The more we see and hear stuff that should be avoided in public discourse", Alibhai-Brown writes, "the more de-sensitised society becomes to what is unacceptable speech or behaviour". You're not kidding, Yasmin.

In the Guardian, Peter Preston doesn't mince his words, "The trouble with a hereditary monarchy is that you get what you're given: in this case, a third-in-line to the throne of no great intellectual acuity", adding the simple truth: "What does a Harry figure – almost devoid of exam pass marks – do with the rest of his life?"

The Express opt for playing down the scandal. As each Harry-related malarkey becomes more difficult to justify, the pro-Royals' best bet is silence. Hence yet another headline about immigrants nicking British jobs (the Express' own obsession) is enough to dwarf a secondary piece titled 'Prince Harry 'paki' slur sickening says Muslim leader'.

We couldn't finish without an opinion from Britain's moral keepers, the Daily Mail. They most certainly didn't find the Prince's latest antics funny. Geoffrey Levy and Richard Kay write that "The really dangerous aspect of this latest Prince Harry affair is that, in all probability, he doesn't really understand just what he has done wrong". They remind the reader that Harry "wasn't an immature 15-year-old" when he was filmed saying what he said. The Mail's own comment is no less slating. "Last chance for the apologetic Prince Harry", is the headline.

5 comments:

thepatriot said...

Here we are again.
One thing normal that Harry does and they're going for the jugular.
Don't you get that the News of The World can hardly talk? They just want to sell more copies and they're doing an excellent job of that!

Harry wasn't being racist. It's not the word itself. It's how you use the word. The context is everything.

This is what a civilization in an advanced state of senility looks like. When the barbarians are at the gates, we'll still be worrying about the epithets we use about them: "differently head-geared", perhaps.

As a side note, I thought institutional-racism was a problem because it impedes the police force's ability to fight crime in a multiracial society, exemplified in the Steven Lawrence case. Why on earth should it be a problem in the army?

Also off topic, in the "raghead" video I was surprised at how cogent and intelligent Harry sounded, considering his struggle to get A-Levels at Britain's poshest school, even with cheating. I guess the army's training facilities are still pretty good.

Stan Moss said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Emma said...

Thepatriot, always to be relied upon for arguing the toss and disgreeing with EVERYTHING we write.

Paki is a very offensive and taboo word, no matter what the context and it is only acceptable when used Pakistani to Pakistani, much the same as the 'N' word, which is used as a term of endearment or address in some Black communities.

Why don't you try and call the next Pakistani person you meet this and see how they react, then if they get pissed off you can relay your opinions to them?

Quite frankly thepatriot, from reading what you wrote here, you come across as a racist yourself. Also, from my experience, joining the army doesn't turn thick, uneducated people into 'cogent, intelligent' human beings. Quite the opposite, in fact.

However, if this is the case, as you say, maybe you should consider a spell in our marvellous military services and see what it does for you?

Richard T said...

Bearing in mind that Harry (or perhaps more accurately Heinrich) has an unbroken line of german male ancestors (many inter-related too) with an occasional leavening of british aristocrats (well 2) in his family tree, he's hardly best equipped to make any comment on anyone's origins is he? And as for Kron Prinz Karl and Sooty. Well.

Anonymous said...

Harry did nothing wrong. This desire for 'republicanism' and 'democracy' is what has gotten us in the mess in the first place.

Personal rule by a King protected his subjects. Today under democracy we pay far more taxes than then, we can be called up to fight and die in wars started by politicians and arms manufacturers. The state regulates our thoughts and our behaviour, we have little privacy and yet you still think we are 'free' and 'better off'???