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IN chess, endgame signals the denouement of the match – the point when pawns can become key.
Fittingly, Endgame is also the name of Omid Scobie’s latest hatchet job on the Royal Family — coming, as it does, from Harry and Meghan’s ultimate pawn.
Far from ending the monarchy then, the ultimate irony is that this tome could well mark the end for the rabid duo.
And not before time.
An MP is putting forward a bill that could strip the pair of their royal titles for good. Bob Seely wants to update the Titles Deprivation 1917 Amendment Bill, which allowed royal titles to be stripped from those who supported Britain’s enemies during World War One, so that it can be applied now.
He has cleared the wording with Parliament’s Table Office, which oversees draft legislation.
The move follows Scobie “accidentally” naming the King and Princess Kate as the “royal racists” in the Dutch version of his book.
Whether or not these conversations — speculating on the skin tone of the unborn Archie — actually happened or not, Omid has opened up a whole can of worms.
His ultimate crime here is not that he’s fuelling division and hatred. It’s that he has set back race relations 20 years.
As former politician Trevor Phillips wrote yesterday, Harry and Meghan’s chief pom-pom waver is detracting from the real issue plaguing the UK — genuine racial inequality.
He explained: “The royal feud fuelled from California isn’t just a sideshow.
“It is preventing us from doing the things we need to do, and slowing down vital social progress. We people of colour are not snowflakes who need to be protected from any mention of our difference.
“If we cannot be treated as normal folk who have normal conversations, including with our non-black relatives, it will take longer for us to achieve equality.”
For months there has been lurid speculation about just who said what. It’s been cruel and unedifying and created divisions in an already fractured family.
Meghan is a woman who’s been on the receiving end of horrific racial abuse.
She knows, first hand, the horror of racism and has done incredible work in trying to open up the conversation on prejudice.
What Omid, her mouthpiece, has done is single-handedly undermine it all.
This confected “row” has been blown out of all proportion, and is intended surely to sell books.
As one reader wrote in a letter to The Times: “Sir, you report on the royal racism row. My wife is a different skin colour to me.
“When she was pregnant, I wondered what our child’s skin colour might be — I felt this was a natural and inevitable thought process.”
Let’s get real here. What Charles and Kate did or didn’t speculate is a conversation repeated up and down the county, by millions of families with mixed heritages and ethnicities.
As one commentator remarked on X/Twitter: “Wondering what colour your baby will be is completely harmless. It’s not that you are going to throw them down the well if they are a colour you aren’t happy with. That would be racist.”
Since private-jetting themselves off to sunny Montecito in 2020, Harry and Meghan have been on a two-man mission (three if we count Scobes) to denounce the Royal Family.
They need never work again by very proxy of this family, the one they so clearly despise.
They enjoy privileges none of us can even start to comprehend.
That they still cling on, like ultimate bottom-feeders, to their royal titles is a joke.
Enough is enough — actions have consequences. It’s time to hit them where it hurts, and take away the titles.
AHH, it’s that warm and fuzzy time of year again when the world’s great and good fly in by private jet to lecture the rest of us on climate change.
Now, president of COP28 Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber, who most definitely does not fly Ryanair, has stoked the fires by claiming there is “no science” behind the need to phase out fossil fuel usage to restrict global heating to 1.5C.
Hmmm. This is a billionaire, and a man whose business has invested hundreds of millions into gas and oil.
You couldn’t make it up.
Fake it to him gently, Meg
IT’S the most iconic scene in rom-com history – when Meg Ryan’s character pretends to climax in When Harry Met Sally.
Thirty-four years on, Meg says of working with co-star Billy Crystal: “The scene came really natural to me – I’ve never been around anyone who made faking an orgasm easier.”
Poor, poor Billy.
GEN Z reckon there is too much sex on telly.
They’re not wrong.
Forget trigger warnings – we should all be alerted to just how un-family-friendly scenes will be.
The other day I was watching Channel 4’s new drama, The Couple Next Door, alongside my 74-year-old neighbour. Which I won’t be doing again.
Cue scenes of shagging, swinging and cringe masturbation which neither of us could un-see.
We sat there in resolute silence.
Please God, make it stop.
Stop abuse of MPs
AN online troll whose malicious targeting of Stella Creasy left the MP’s children with a social services record (which cannot be deleted) has admitted harassment in what a judge described as one of the worst cases he had seen.
Philip Stacey, 52, bombarded the Labour politician with vile emails and reported her to social services over her supposed anti-men stance. He’s now been given a suspended 14-week jail sentence.
What this cretin did was undoubtedly awful.
But there’s a wider issue at stake here – the abuse of female MPs as a whole.
Routinely, our elected politicians are subjected to unimaginable abuse, the likes of which would break the majority of us.
Quite why people think it’s acceptable to vent a litany of bile, sometimes death threats, to another human being on the basis of their political leanings beggars belief.
There’s already a dearth of talent in the Commons.
We should be encouraging young, talented, conviction-led public servants into office; not make them want to run for the hills, and get a cosy job in HR.
CAN someone put an arm around Britney Spears, and take her off social media?
The star’s latest Instagram post looks like an audition tape for OnlyFans.
Of course, she’s a grown woman and entitled to reclaim her body in any way she chooses after years of being told “no”.
But she doesn’t look happy.
And it’s clear she continues to struggle with the perils of fame.
Someone in her camp must, surely, intervene and get her the help she so obviously, and painfully, needs.
Xmas pud no good
FINALLY. The great British public have woken up to the planet’s most over-rated foodstuff.
Sales of Christmas puddings are drying up as we turn to alternatives including panettone and chocolate cake.
Quite right too.
No one, surely, really fancies a plateful of suetty dried fruit, and a hunk of brandy butter, after a 3,000-calorie lunch.
Every year, my parents buy an alternative pud for the “youngsters” in the family (my cousins, 28 and 30, and me, 41).
Which was all well and good . . . bar the year I went out drinking on Christmas Eve, only to come home and monster three-quarters of a festive Colin The Caterpillar cake at 1am.
My mother didn’t speak to me until Boxing Day.
Meme of the week
Gen Z’s cop out
LAST week a Cambridge GP turned whistleblower revealed the extraordinary number of students demanding sick notes before exams.
Huge swathes of the next generation are seeking ADHD diagnoses, so as to get extra time. To cheat, basically.
Thanks to Dr Google, more and more young people are self-diagnosing and fuelling their already rife anxiety levels. It’s wrong on so many levels.
Not only are these snowflakes depriving those with real mental health problems vital medication, they are also belittling a very real medical condition.
But, above all else, we are pandering to fragilities – what sort of grounding is this for the real world?
We are facilitating a generation of weaklings.
Gen Z need to get real, and toughen up for the very real battles they will, undoubtedly, one day face.
IS there anything more galling than seeing merry rail union bosses getting stuck into free food and booze at their annual Christmas bash, right – on the very day they launched a fresh hell round of strikes?
Read the room, guys.