Meghan Markle, wife of prince Harry, is out Thursday with her silence to speak out on the death of George Floyd and, more broadly, racism and police violence in the United States, which she witnessed during her youth in California.
If it has not taken the floor earlier, it was that she was “nervous” and did not know how to address the issue, ” says the american actress, métis, visibly moved, in a six-minute video addressed to young graduates of his old high school Immaculate Heart in Los Angeles.
“And then I realized that the only error was to keep the silence, because the life of George Floyd had,” says the duchess of Sussex.
The young woman 38-year-old was then given details of the names of other victims of black brutality in recent years. Among them, Breonna Taylor, health professional 26-year-old killed at his home by police in march, or Tamir Rice, a boy of 12 years shot dead while he was playing with a toy gun in 2014.
“The lives of many other people, those of which we know the names, and those of which we do not know the names”, also had, she continued, in reference to the movement “Black Live Matters” in the origin of the hundreds of events that have raised the country since the death of George Floyd under the knee of a white policeman.
Now back in California with her husband and her son Archie, after having officially ceased to be “active members” of the royal family, Meghan Markle is remembered the riots of 1992 in his hometown, Los Angeles, “triggered by an act of racism free”. In the present case, the acquittal of four white police officers who had beaten and seriously injured the motorist black Rodney King.
The duchess of Sussex was still only a child who was getting ready “to enter college Immaculate Heart”. “And I remember the curfew, I would be rushed with me and have seen on the road, in the car, out of the ashes fall from the sky, having smelled the fumes and saw the smoke pouring out of the buildings,” she recounted.
“Eyes filled with tears”
“And I remember I stopped in front of the house and having seen this tree, which had always been there, completely charred. And these memories do not disappear,” says soberly Meghan Markle.
The protests and violence that had spread to San Francisco, Las Vegas, Atlanta and New York had at that time sixty dead and over 2,300 wounded.
Meghan Markle has also evoked the memory of a teacher who had marked him, telling him to “never forget to put the needs of others before his own fears”. “I have more than ever thought last week”, she says.
The duchess of Sussex has, in turn, provided advice and encouragement to the graduates of the promotion 2020 of his high school. “You know you’re going to rebuild, rebuild and rebuild again (…) Because when the foundations are broken, so are we”, she started, calling the young girls to “make their voices heard more than ever” by voting.
Born of a mother african-american, Doria Ragland, and a white father, Thomas Markle, the actress mestizo has itself been the victim of racism, especially when she lived in the United Kingdom, which she left last winter, with prince Harry.
A presenter for british radio BBC Radio 5 live had been fired in 2019, to have attached to it a photo of a monkey to that of the son of the royal couple.
It already has in the past referred to the discrimination and oppression suffered by his ancestors, as his grandfather, who had had to borrow the door reserved for “people of color” to order in a restaurant in Kentucky, where he was able to sit down to eat his meal. “This story still haunts me (…) It reminds me of how our country is young. While the road travelled and the one that remains to be done,” she had written.
Meghan Markle had also spoken of the racist insults suffered by her own mother in Los Angeles while she was in the car with her and “her eyes filled with tears”.