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Meghan Markle's Treatment By The Royal Family Is Proof Black Women Should Always Be Protected

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Meghan Markle

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry sat down with Oprah on Sunday evening for their first televised interview since stepping back from the British Royal Family and leaving the UK.

It was an event that shocked many people around the world, but for a Black woman like me, it wasn’t so shocking.

I remember when I first heard of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s engagement and thinking to myself at the time, “Oh no.”

My exclamation of dread came from a place of knowing Meghan was mixed-race and knowing her time within the Royal Family would be challenging. She was entering into a monarchy that had never made space for Black women, and she was going to be representing us in a way that a woman of color had never done before. 

Throughout the interview with Oprah, all of the doubts I had at the beginning of their courtship, along with speculation of Meghan’s treatment by the Royal Family and the institution surrounding it, were tragically confirmed.

RELATED: The Royal (And Very Problematic) Double Standard Between The Treatment Of Meghan Markle And Prince Andrew

The blatant racism Markle experienced, at not only the hands of the press but also by Prince Harry’s family, truly broke my heart. To hear just how much Meghan suffered for those four years in London, even to the point where she considered suicide, sent chills down my back.

It felt reminiscent of the lackluster support Black women experience on the daily when it comes to their well-being.

The way the vicious British tabloids absolutely smeared Markle's name and made her out to be the villain (see: Kate Middleton flower girl dress feud) — while the Royal Family just sat back and let untruths be reported — proves that the treatment of Black women in the U.S. and across the pond is pretty much the same: not great.

Markle is mixed-race and still had to deal with anti-Blackness and racist remarks made against her, which only makes me wonder how would this sad situation would have panned out if Prince Harry had married someone with even darker skin — or if Markle herself had been fully Black instead of half.

Our society needs to do better when it comes to protecting, loving, and supporting Black women. 

Markle was struggling with her mental health. She was struggling with trying to stay alive, and instead of helping her, the Institution turned its back on her and forced her to suffer alone, save for her husband.

RELATED: What Prince Harry And Meghan Markle's Podcast Tells Us About Their Future In The Royal Family

Thankfully Meghan got out. She was able to leave that life behind and finally find peace, but for other, less privileged Black women, that's not the reality.

Malcolm X, in 1962, once said: “The most disrespected person in America is the Black woman. The most unprotected person in America is the Black woman. The most neglected person in America is the Black woman.”

We saw it with the murders of Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Atatiana Jefferson, and so many more. We see it every day when Black women are denied basic healthcare and when Black women in the U.S. are three times more likely to die from complications of childbirth than white women.

And we see it now with Meghan Markle and how she was left unprotected and vulnerable by a racist, patriarchal, and frankly, outdated, institution.

Black women do so much. We carry the weight of the world on our shoulders, and all we ask for in return is for people to support us, to protect us, and to love us.

The story of Meghan Markle could’ve easily ended in tragedy, and after watching her interview with Oprah, I'm beyond happy she got out safely with her husband and son. 

But we need to think about all of the Black women who don’t have the same luxuries to leave as Markle did, and we need to uplift them. 

We need to elevate their voices so they don’t continue to be silenced when they desperately beg for help.

RELATED: Meghan Markle Reveals She Suffered A Miscarriage In Heart-Wrenching Personal Essay

Nia Tipton is a writer living in Chicago. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.