Friday, 14 January 2005

Où l'on reparle de Harry....

I would like to come back on yesterday's post. While the controversy shows no sign of abating and with a few lone (and not very articulate) voices trying to come to the Prince's rescue, I think that the whole thing has now passed the question of whether he needs to apologise himself or not. It seems pretty clear now that he won't, after having released that statement. What I think is important is to try and understand what led to him wearing this costume.

I hear most of his defenders (and some of his detractors) calling him "a boy". Either they are trying to minimise the affair or they are being incredibly patronising towards their protégé. As I pointed out yesterday, he is now 20 years old. He is an adult, presumably capable of making his own considered decisions and required to face up with their consequences. He is not any 20 year old either, who can go and make a fool of himself with limited repercussions: He is, whether he wants it or not, a leading figure in this country and possibly a few others, and this sort of mistake does not make me look like he is adequately prepared for his position of influence. This is rather worrying for the future.

Another point I made yesterday is that he has been given the chance of a very good education. He is also not the type of young man who has spend his youth on his own devices, with no one around to have as a role model or to give him a sense of perspective. This should have enabled him to recognise that Nazi-ism is a dangerous subject to treat lightly. He should have been convinced in his heart of hearts that you do not, you CAN NOT, make light of this "dark hour" of the human history. My circumstances bear no relation whatsoever with his but I am convinced that even at an earlier age than his (as young as 15/16, I would say), I would have been aware of all this and it would not even have crossed my mind to wear anything Nazi under any circumstance. How could he imagine that Nazi could be funny?! Is he really lacking so much in sense as not to realise that it was a bad idea? The only way he could have done it is by not wearing the uniform "straight": ie not done up properly and/or wearing make up or something of the kind; in other words by showing that he was making fun of the Nazis not just endorsing their uniform and therefore, potentially and by association, their ideas... Another worrying point is that those aids of his of whom we hear ever five minutes at the moment seem to have been singularly absent at the time when he decided to wear the uniform.

We know precious little about the circumstances of his choice and I think that rather than another apology which would probably not satisfy many, an explanation might prove more helpful; both for the people who feel hurt by the whole episode and for the Prince's peace itself...

1 comment:

  1. You certainly cannot justify an action like that. Letting him off with being just a boy is really not on considering everything he has been given. He has had the education and upbringing most kids only dream of. I'd be quite happy to have more responsibility and to have his lifestyle, if he doesn't want it!

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