Exeter, Devon UK • Apr 22, 2024 • VOL XII

Exeter, Devon UK • [date-today] • VOL XII
Home Comment It’s high time we stopped paying so much attention to the royals.

It’s high time we stopped paying so much attention to the royals.

In the wake of the furore around Harry and Meghan Chloe Pumares asks whether or not the royals should be given as much attention when climate change, Trump and other more pressing stories are ignored.
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Isn’t it about time we stopped giving the Royal Family so much attention?

Image: the British royal family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, June 2013

Are stories about increasing climate change, potential Middle Eastern conflict and Trump’s impeachment constantly overshadowed by the British Monarchy?

The Royal Family is an institution us Brits tend to be incredibly invested in. Therefore, it’s no surprise that images and stories of the most famous family in Britain (and arguably much of the world) appear in newspapers and online almost daily. However, do they really require so much media attention, or are they simply detracting from more worrying and significant items of news.

Fascination with the British Monarchy is hardly a new phenomenon, Queen Victoria was the monarch who ushered in a new age and remained visible in the public eye to ensure her popularity. And public obsession has continued to this day. Being Victoria’s great-great-granddaughter and a similarly impressive figure it’s not surprising that today the media are just as interested in Queen Elizabeth and her family’s day to day life.

Public interest in the 20th and 21st century is undoubtedly linked to the escapism the Royal Family offer. The daily life of the royals, particularly the Queen, is shrouded in mystery and luxury as it is so far removed from our own. Our admiration and obsession come from the fact that we are only given the select scraps of information that they feed us; hence we devour every piece we can get. The withholding of some information causes people to gossip and rumours to circulate which helps to keep the Monarchy in people’s immediate consciousness. Although the new generation of royals, the Cambridge’s and the Sussex’s, pique the interest of the British public in a different way. They appear more relatable, as stories about them, such as William and Harry coming forward about their struggle with mental health after the death of their mother Diana, Princess of Wales, make us feel like we are more than just ‘subjects’ but part of the family.

Give the front covers to those that are worthy, not just because they are linked to the crown.

Recently the Royal Family are having a moment in pop culture, with movies, TV shows and documentaries all allowing us a look into the private lives that we have never been privy to before. TV shows such as Netflix’s ‘The Crown’, films such as ‘The Queen’ starring Helen Mirren as well as documentaries such as ‘Elizabeth at 90’ have allowed us a peek into an institution which has been shrouded in mystery for centuries. These shows and films have caused us to feel as though we truly know the royal family and have broken down the barrier that previously existed between them and us.

Have we allowed ourselves to become too dazzled and caught up in all the details of their private lives that we have become blind to other more worrying and pressing situations? There have been many news stories recently that have been worthy of front page news such as the Australian bush fires, information about Trumps impeachment and more recently fears over the potentially deadly corona virus, yet looking back at newspapers over the last week alone, there are countless headlines about Prince Harry and Megan’s decision to step down from the royal family. While this is a newsworthy story, couldn’t it possibly be relegated to further back pages of the newspaper so more serious subjects get the attention they deserve from UK readers.

So yes, while understandably there is a British interest in the daily lives of the Royal Family and journalists should give the people want they want, journalists also have a duty to inform their readers of news stories from all across the world. Hence, could we be in agreement to stop recycling headlines about ‘Megxit’ and writing articles with no real updates in them, and instead focus on educating our readers about matters of the world that will possibly affect them on a more individual level. The escapism of the British monarchy is nice enough but has a time and a place, and with the problems that are going on in the world currently, it seems appropriate that we bring the British public back to reality by covering all news stories equally. Give the front covers to those that are worthy, not just because they are linked to the crown.

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