In 2018, a lot of people were excited over Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding, as the new addition to the Royal Family is a product of a mixed race union. Aside from being an American, Meghan’s mother is black and her father is white. The United Kingdom has a rich history on mixed-race culture and it was only recently that the term “half-caste” in the British vocabulary was changed to “mixed race”.
Oprah Winfrey‘s interview of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex has all but erased doubts that mixed race union is still not as acceptable to the British monarchy. Still, Harry and Meghan’s revelations drew mixed reactions not only from the UK audience; but worldwide as well.
Tina Brown, a known royal watcher and an experienced magazine editor, stated that the bombshell interview exploded while the British monarchy’s reputation is still hurting from the portrayal of the royal family in the Netflix’s original made-for-streaming-movie “The Crown.” Brown told CBS that Meghan Markle’s revelations about how she was barred from getting inpatient treatment for her suicidal thoughts, was similar to how the Saudi royal family handles their internal affairs.
British writer and podcaster Owen Jones who has a huge following of British youth, said in a tweet that the interview exposed the truth — not only of the English monarchy’s racist leanings, but also the fact that the institution has little or no care about suicidal tendencies either.
Nevertheless, the couple only had warm words for the queen throughout the interview with Oprah, but were frank about how the institution that Queen Elizabeth leads, gave Markle little support. The two confirmed Prince Harry’s falling-out with his father Prince Charles, saying that lately, the later has not been taking his calls. Harry stated though that he hopes to one day patch up his relationship with his father.
It’s Not Just about Meghan and Her Mixed Race Origin
Some people who were once involved with the monarchy’s institution conveyed their sympathy to Meghan Markle, including the queen’s former press secretary Charles Anson, who explained that
”It is very hard to marry into the royal family as it comes along as a new relationship and a new job as well.
The Viscountess of Hinchingbrooke, Julie Montagu, who is also American-born, mentioned in an interview that as an outsider to the British aristocracy, it was like living a marriage in an alien world. As someone who has been married to a British aristocrat for twenty years, Montagu stated that the two cultures are very different.
Popular television personality Piers Morgan was quite scathing with his words in taking side with the British monarchy and its royal traditions. Piers said that compassion is typically not expected from the British aristocracy. He rebuked the couple for throwing away everything the queen has worked for during her reign. His comment however, received an on-air and live clapback from Trisha Goddard who is a Black TV host.
After the live confrontation with Goddard who disapproved of his harsh remarks about Meghan, Piers Morgan quit his hosting job with “Good Morning Britain.”
For weddings that blend families, spending the holidays together will be a little special. It’s your first Christmas together! And with kids, you will have to introduce to them the spirit of Christmas, a custom celebration that happens all over the world.
Where do our Christmas customs actually come from?
Trees in the living room, calendars that only have 24 days, old men with red pointed caps. At first glance, our Christmas customs may seem a bit strange. But they have a story – and you can find it out here
Nicholas and Santa Claus
Whitebeard, red robe, and a bulging gift sack – that’s, of course, Santa Claus. But the legendary hero of Christmas did not always have this well-known figure.
Its appearance and function go back to St. Nicholas. This bishop lived in the 4th century and to this day his name day is celebrated every year on December 6th – it is thanks to him that shoes and stockings are filled with sweets on St. Nicholas Day.
Now it’s getting more complicated. Because the one who visits us on Christmas Eve is not Santa Claus, this is Santa Claus. The two Christmassy guys have a lot in common, but they are not one and the same person. Over time, “Santa Claus” emerged from St. Nicholas in the USA. It was there that today’s image of him was shaped.
At the beginning of the 19th century, the authors of many poems and stories described him with a red coat and a long white beard – later the reindeer sleigh was also mentioned. In addition, Santa Claus got a “home”: the North Pole.
Thanks to many films and the advertising of the lemonade giant “Coca Cola”, Santa Claus soon became known all over the world. Since the beginning of the 20th century, Santa Claus has been competing with our actual Christmas messenger – the Christ Child.
Even in the Harry Potter movies, they have celebrated Christmas! Test how much you know about Harry Potter with the harry potter sorting hat quiz.
A tree is a focus
With “Christmas” we not only associate Santa Claus but also the Christmas tree. But why do we actually put a needle-like plant in the living room? The tree takes up a lot of space, it pokes us when we want the presents that are below it and after a short time, it begins to lose its needles. And then we hang it with all sorts of odds and ends, wrap shiny threads around the branches and let it shine in a blaze of lights.
There is a needle-like custom in many countries around the world. Decorated trees are nothing new in our culture. An example: in the Middle Ages people began to decorate a maypole in spring.
It took a little longer for people to bring a tree into their living room at Christmas. It is believed that the first Christmas trees adorned living spaces in the 18th century. But why do conifers play the main role at Christmas?
Almost all conifers are evergreen, so they do not lose their leaves. That symbolizes life force. Also: putting up a bare birch tree as a Christmas tree in winter would certainly look a bit bleak – even if it would be easier to get the gifts.