Why Oprah Got So Upset During Meghan Markle's Interview

As promised, Oprah Winfrey's tell-all interview with Meghan Markle included no shortage of revelations about what life was like as the Duchess of Sussex. One of the most upsetting things she shared was how the royal family handled the topic of race, specifically when Meghan became pregnant with her and Prince Harry's first child, Archie.

Meghan said she learned through Prince Harry that members of the royal family had spoken to him and expressed "concerns" about whether or not their unborn baby would have dark skin.

As she recounted to Oprah, there were "concerns and conversations about how dark [Archie's] skin might be when he was born." Meghan clarified that no one spoke directly to her; the conversations were between Harry and members of his family. Harry then relayed the conversations to Meghan.

Oprah became visibly upset about this horrifying bombshell and asked Meghan to name the royal family members who had raised the issue of Archie's skin color. She declined, saying "that it would be very damaging to them."

Meghan was subjected to racist media coverage

The new book Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand addresses the role that racism played in the British media's treatment of Meghan Markle. According to Harper's Bazaar, the palace refused to refute negative stories about Meghan the same way they did other members of the royal family.

The outlet shared an excerpt on the topic: "Traditionally, the palace has had no comment when it comes to rumors, but the Sussexes felt it wasn't afraid to bend the rules if it was to correct a story about higher-ranking family members," Scobie and Durand wrote. "Case in point: A spokesman went on the record in July 2019 to deny claims by a cosmetic clinic that Kate had had 'baby Botox'... Harry and Meghan were frustrated by this approach."

As reported by NBC News, the treatment of Meghan sent a loud and clear message to Black Britons. Eniola Ladapo, a student at the London School of Economics, told the outlet that she didn't pay much attention to the royal family until Meghan became engaged to Harry. She recalled thinking how "powerful" it would be to have a child of African descent in the monarchy.

Ladapo described the treatment of Meghan as a "very rude awakening." She told NBC News that "[i]t reminded us that we shouldn't get too comfortable, and no matter how much we think we are accepted into society, we really aren't."

Twitter wasn't entirely surprised by Meghan Markle's comments

That there were those who felt as Oprah did and were shocked by the racist comments made by the Royal Family, but it appears there were more than a few members of the Twitterati who might have seen this one coming. "The people in that house are OLD as h***, dating back all the way when slavery was still around. I absolutely positively believe that there were conversations about that baby's skin color. Anybody who doesn't believe that is full of s*** honestly," one supporter tweeted.

Another person pointed out that: "Everyone acting surprised that the royal family is racist as if their entire existence isn't based in colonial exploitation and imperialist expansion." A third said: "For anyone who dares to say the royal family isn't racist, Princess Michael of Kent showed up to a dinner where she was going to meet Meghan, a mixed woman, wearing a black brooch and with a smirk on her face"

The Twitterverse also had harsh things to say about Meghan's interview

Not everyone in the Twitterverse came in support of Harry and Meghan. "Anyone who has had a biracial baby has had the question asked. That is not surprising at all. Racism is alive and well among us," tweeted another. Another said: "I sympathise with her, but she did marry into one of the oldest most famous, talked about institutions in the world, there are rules! It's complicated, but I will say, that if the Royal Family were racist they would never have been allowed to marry."

One social media user even suggested that the problem the Royal Family might have had with Meghan didn't have to do with the color of her skin, but something else: "Neither throw her a Royal wedding and given her all the patronages and visibility. Big mistake on their part... not because of her skin color but because of her lack of class, lack of loyalty and commitment, family history etc." Regardless of how fans feel about the interview, one thing is undeniable: it was revealing in an unprecedented way.