London — Seventy-two women lawmakers from across the political spectrum published an open letter late Tuesday to Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, expressing their support for her “taking a stand” against some coverage she receives in the British press, including stories which they said had “outdated, colonial undertones.”
“Although we find ourselves being women in public life in a very different way to you,” the letter said, which was posted online by Member of Parliament Holly Lynch. “We share an understanding of the abuse and intimidation which is now so often used as a means of disparaging women in public office from getting on with our very important work.”Earlier this month, Prince Harry announced he and Meghan were taking legal action against The Mail on Sunday newspaper and its parent company for publishing some of Meghan’s private correspondence with her father. The lawsuit was a break in practice by the Royal Family, which more traditionally tries to avoid legal action.
“I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditized to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person,” Harry said in a statement attacking the British tabloid press, when he announced the lawsuit. He compared the treatment of Meghan to the coverage of his mother, Princess Diana.Since Meghan was first linked to Harry, her supporters have criticized some of the media’s coverage of her. In 2016, Harry publicly denounced harassment Meghan was receiving online, as well as the “racial undertones” of some of the tabloid stories written about her.”She would have expected a level of press interest and public interest,” Lynch told CBS News. “What she wouldn’t have expected was xenophobic undertones to that interest. It doesn’t matter who you are in public life, you should never be subjected to that on an almost daily basis,” Lynch said.In a recent documentary, the royal couple spoke about the difficulties they’ve had with media coverage of them.”I never thought that this would be easy, but I thought it would be fair, and that’s the part that’s really hard to reconcile,” Meghan told the documentary makers, British broadcaster ITV News.”I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces,” Harry said.Later on Wednesday, Lynch told British broadcaster ITV News that Markle had called her to thank her and the other authors of the letter for their support.
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