By Tammy Sutherns
I’m not one to comment much on the rich, famous or royal. But I did a double take when I saw a story on News 24 this morning that read, “Kate Middleton apologises to William”.
Firstly let’s just dismantle the headline. Why do readers need to know that it is Kate “Middleton” that we are referring to, but we don’t need to know that we are talking about William Mountbatten-Windsor or Prince William? It implies that we will all know who William is, but may need a refresher on who Kate is. My argument is that surely you should either have the headline, “Kate apologises to William,” as those interested will know who they are referring to, or have the headline, “Kate Middleton apologises to Prince William.” Equal ne?
The opening line of the story reads, “Duchess Catherine is said to begging Prince William for forgiveness.”
Erm … I’m pretty sure William was right there next to her when those photographs were taken. While I have not seen the pictures myself, I’m pretty sure he didn’t look like he was complaining at the time either.
The story goes on to say, “The 30-year-old future queen is devastated at the thought of upsetting him and the rest of the royal family and can’t stop apologising since the photos of her sunbathing topless hit newsstands earlier this month.”
This brings me to my next point. She wasn’t involved in anything illegal, she wasn’t smoking a joint or hiring a prostitute. The poor girl was just sun tanning. As far as publishing the pictures goes, it wasn’t in the public’s interest and so it was the newspapers that are in the wrong and by all means, are legally liable. Everyone simply needs to Let. It. Go.
But my real concern is that the way that the media portrays women is still very distorted. What this story depicts is an ashamed woman who needs to beg forgiveness from her husband for something he was very much a part of. If you are married to a prince, you shouldn’t dare show your royal arse to anyone as you might upset his entire family, causing shame and embarrassment. Is this the message we are portraying to all of the little girls who want to grow up to be princesses? Harry’s little naked mistake a few weeks earlier, on the other hand, was forgotten within in minutes.
I know that we are dealing with the gossip sector of media, a sector that thrives off other people’s misdemeanors, unhappiness and embarrassing moments. We can’t hold their moral compass too high. However the embedded messages that it is sending its consumers is rather frightening for the year 2012. From the subtle ways that headlines are worded to the more obvious stories coming across, it seems to me that women in the public eye are expected to be perfect trophies that dare not misbehave.
Kate, you flaunt that body and flaunt it proud.