As a Black woman in America, here’s why Meghan Markle’s marriage matters so much to me
- Meghan Markle arrived in Ascot to cheer on her man as he competed in the Audi Polo Challenge with brother
- Prince Harry, 33, also treated spectators when he took part in a charity polo match in Oxfordshire yesterday
- The royal newlyweds were also accompanied by tennis ace Serena Williams and tech husband Alexis Ohanian
Last time Prince Harry was at the Audi Polo Challenge all eyes were on his then girlfriend Meghan Markle.
But today the Duchess of Sussex made a subtle entrance as she arrived in Ascot, Berkshire, to cheer on her husband.
The royal newlyweds were also accompanied by their good friends Serena Williams and her husband Alexis Ohanian who both attended the Royal Wedding at Windsor Castle in May.
Meghan Markle arrives at Ascot to cheer for Prince Harry
Meghan Markle turned up at the Audi Polo Challenge today to cheer on Prince Harry who was competing alongside his brother
The royal newlyweds were also accompanied by their good friends Serena Williams and her husband Alexis Ohanian (left)
The US couple were both in attendance when Meghan and Prince Harry tied the knot on May 19 at Windsor Castle
The Duke of Cambridge (left) was seen joining his brother Harry (right) as they competed in the tournament at Ascot
Harry takes a break from competing as he appeared with his brother in the polo match
The Duke of Sussex delighted polo fans for the second day on the trot as he wowed spectators alongside his brother.
He and Prince William enjoyed some brotherly bonding as they took to the turf at the Coworth Park Polo Club.
Prince Harry's appearance today comes after he thrilled sports fans at a charity match in Oxfordshire yesterday.
Harry was seen squatting in his riding helmet following on from yesterday, when he made a surprise appearance at British Polo Day in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire.
Friday's event, which saw Prince Harry and the US-based Valiente team take on the UAE, raised £200,000 for the Royal Foundation and Sentebale, two charities of which he is patron.
The Duke of Sussex, 33, kept a low profile as he competed in British Polo Day in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire. Pictured, Harry with world number one Adolfo Cambiaso
Prince Harry, pictured in the foreground, showed off his skills at the event, which raised £200,000 for the Royal Foundation and Sentebale, two charities of which he is patron
At one point Harry was seen reaching over to pat leading British player Nina Clarkin, 35, on the back after a particularly impressive move. The pair competed for the US-based Valiente team
The night before Harry was joined by Meghan, 36, at an engagement with the Queen but his wife chose to sit out the day at the polo.
The prince appeared in good spirits as he showed off his skills on the field alongside leading men's polo player Adolfo Cambiaso and women's star Nina Clarkin.
The teams were competing for the Chelsea Barracks River Field Plate.
At one point Harry was seen reaching over to pat British player Clarkin, 35, on the back after a particularly impressive move.
Harry attended the event solo as the Duchess of Sussex apparently chose to stay at home
The royal and his teammates emerged victorious and took home the Chelsea Barracks River Field Plate
Harry, pictured back row left, has a number of polo matches lined up this summer
Meanwhile Argentina-based Cambiaso, 43, the current world number one, competed for the UAE.
But it was Harry and Clarkin's team who triumphed and the pair were seen beaming as they posed for photos at the end of the match.
Harry has a number of polo matches lined up this summer, giving Meghan plenty of opportunities to watch her husband in action.
Meghan Markle seen crossing her legs as she sat near the Queen
The newlyweds made their first appearance as a couple when they attended the Audi Polo Challenge at Coworth Park, Berkshire, in May last year.
The event offered royal supporters one of the first glimpses of the now Duke and Duchess of Sussex together when they were spotted embracing in the car park.
The outing, which saw the duchess being introduced to some of Harry's closest confidants, give yet another sign of the seriousness of their relationship.
The royals were joined by David Beckham and Sir Lenny Henry, to present awards to winners of the Queen's Young Leaders for 2018
Meghan Markle and her mother Daria Ragland (Courtesy of Kensington Palace)
Family. What would we do without them?
If we have learned anything during this past week leading up to the royal wedding, it’s that family jealousy, insensitivity and pettiness is more common than one might think. After all, every family has a few relatives who we would rather not take out in public or have attend our wedding.
Nothing can be worse for bride-to-be, Meghan Markle (who in this case will have close to one billion guests attending her wedding virtually and who is about to literally marry a prince) than to have her father drop out of the wedding party at the last minute. At first shamed by some staged photos he sold, Thomas Markle then spoke to TMZ about a heart condition and surgery that would not allow him to travel to his youngest daughter’s wedding.
Instead of being focused on last-minute details, guests and pre-wedding parties, she and her beau, Prince Harry have been beset by a non-stop global media firestorm that captivated the attention of the world. The silver lining of course is that Meghan will be escorted on Saturday by the heir to the British throne, Prince Charles.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend an Anzac Day service at Westminster Abbey on April 25, 2018 in London, England.
On top of all of the positive and negative hoopla is a discussion around race and the fact that Meghan will be the first “mixed-race” royal since Queen Sophia Charlotte of Mecklenburg, over 250 years ago now.
What’s the big deal about this “mixed-race” royal to be? This may just be the opening needed fore a much needed “diversity and inclusion” discussion in the British Aristocracy. It’s complicated, but as someone who is the aunt of two bi-racial nieces is (ages 20 and 15), I can tell you this wedding means a lot to me because it shows my nieces that they, like Ms. Markle, have unique and special value.
They come from two different cultures (European and African), both rich in history and both equally worthy of honor and respect. And that has not always been the case here in America or in the UK.
As a 37-year-old, half-Black American, divorcee, Meghan is a huge change for the British monarchy. Her addition to the family shows a transformation and passing of the baton to the next generation of royals. I mean who can call them stuffy or out of touch now? The British crown will now have amongst its ranks a “Black princess,” married to the sixth in line to the throne.
To Harry’s eternal credit, he bucked protocol. He didn’t follow the rule that a woman’s value is either diminished by her age or race or bolstered by ability to bear children. Most poignantly, he has been vigilant in defending Meghan from racist attacks.
Harry didn’t follow tradition like his father who looked for a fresh, fertile, young virgin as his bride. Remember, Princess Diana was only 20 years old when she married Prince Charles. Instead. Harry chose the woman he loves, who happens to also be closer to 40, divorced, American actress, and yes, half-Black. That’s a lot to unpack. It’s validating, affirming, inspiring and amazing all at once. Say what you will about Princess Diana, but she raised her sons to be independent men.
Here’s the thing: sometimes, in fact more often than not, your family can be the worst enemy you will ever encounter. Been there and done that, but, you have to keep focused on who you are and what God has for you. Despite all the drama, Meghan has kept her eye on the prize and conducted herself with grace, humility and compassion, particularly towards a father who pretty much abandoned her in front of the world. Her mother has been the epitome of class and discretion. These two women, under fire, have represented Black women quite well.
That Prince Charles is giving her away on Saturday in front of the world sends a loud message that Meghan is loved, valued, wanted and accepted. And, for me as a middle-aged, Black woman, who lives here in America, and who sees daily how devalued Black women are even in 2018, my heart is glowing for this young Black woman and what lies ahead of her. Meghan makes me believe that fairy tales do in fact come true even for us.
While Meghan prefers to use the term “mixed race” or “bi-racial,” the reality is she’s Black. I’m not just saying that because it makes me feel better. In American, under slavery, we used the term, “partus sequitur ventrem” a Latin phrase which means “that which is brought forth follows the womb.” It speaks to the doctrine dating back to the late 1600’s that children of mixed race are identified by their mother’s race. In essence, it absolves white fathers from their financial responsibility of having their offspring with slaves. No matter her preference, Meghan is a young Black woman who was raised by an equally powerful Black mother and that matters.
At the end of it all, the greatest lesson here is that love wins. And that love, if true and reciprocal, can conquer all. These two young people are both in for an amazing journey as husband and wife. I love that Meghan’s mother grounds her in her blackness. Yet, she will now be part of a royal European family that dates back 1,000 years. I pray that Harry will protect her and cover her as the head of their house. I am praying for these amazing young people to stay focused and not allow anyone or anything to rain on their upcoming big day!
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