Meghan Markle says her race was only ever ‘made an issue’ when she came to UK

Meghan and Harry reflect on the ‘straight outta Compton’ tabloid headline in their new documentary

Ellie Harrison
Thursday 08 December 2022 09:31 GMT
Meghan Markle recounts moment racial slurs were screamed at mother

Meghan Markle has opened up about her experiences of racism, in the new Netflix documentary Harry and Meghan.

Speaking in the second episode of the programme, which arrived on the platform on Thursday 8 December, Markle reflected on the first time she heard the n word in the US. She also talked about how, when she came to the UK, she experienced much more racism.

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“We were in the parking lot leaving [a concert] and my mom honked her horn at this woman… and the woman turned around and screamed the n word at my mom,” she said. “We never talked about it... I’d never in my life heard someone say the n word.”

She added: “It’s very different to be a minority but not be treated as a minority off the bat. Obviously now, people are very aware of my race because they made it such an issue when I went to the UK. Before that, most people didn’t treat me ‘like a Black woman’. So that talk didn’t have to happen for me [as a child].”

Markle talked about how, when her and Prince Harry’s relationship first became public knowledge, her mother warned her that the criticism she would receive would all be about her race.

The couple discuss the headline in the Daily Mail, which called Markle “(almost) straight outta Compton”, saying that the royal family advised them to give “no comment” despite the duke wanting to defend her.

Harry said: “As far as the family was concerned, everything she was being put through they’d been put through as well, so it was almost like a rite of passage. Some of the members of the family were like, ‘My wife had to go through that, so why should your girlfriend be treated differently?’ And I said, ‘The difference here is the race element.’”

Prince Harry put out a statement eight days after the relationship became public, expressing his concern over the “racial undertones” in the coverage in the British tabloid press.

Follow along here for live updates about the Harry and Meghan documentary.

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