Prince Harry had a hand in Duchess Meghan’s editorial debut with British Vogue in that he interviewed world-renowned anthropologist Jane Goodall for the issue.
Harper’s Bazaar reported that Prince Harry and Dr. Goodall spoke at length about conservation and sustainability, but they also got around to chatting about the complexities of human nature and people’s inherent biases toward those who are different from them.
The Duke of Sussex wanted to talk about the idea of “unconscious bias,” why people feel the way they do about things like race, and the label “racist,” which makes people feel defensive in conversation.
“Despite the fact that if you go up to someone and say, ‘What you’ve just said, or the way that you’ve behaved, is racist” — they’ll turn around and say, ‘I’m not a racist.’ ‘I’m not saying that you’re a racist, I’m just saying that your unconscious bias is proving that, because of the way that you’ve been brought up, the environment you’ve been brought up in, suggests that you have this point of view — unconscious point of view — where naturally you will look at someone in a different way.’ And that is the point at which people start to have to understand.”
Prince Harry has warned about the dangers of "unconscious racism," telling @JaneGoodallInst (in a conversation for @BritishVogue's #ForcesForChange issue) that too many people don't acknowledge their own bias and that stigma is “handed down from generation to generation." pic.twitter.com/CzVLJyEgY1
— Omid Scobie (@scobie) July 30, 2019
Prince Harry has become more enlightened since he started dating his wife, Meghan Markle, who happens to be mixed race. As Markle was thrust into the spotlight at the prince’s side, he made note of the fact that the trolls online and in the tabloids were taking a racist tone when speaking about the now-duchess.
It got bad enough that Prince Harry had Kensington Palace issue a rare statement to say that the tone being taken with Markle was often abusive and offensive. He stated that he was worried about Markle’s safety as the drumbeat of racism and misogyny was increasing.
In his conversation with Goodall, she said that in working with young people, she’s noticed that the concept of race is introduced when children are young. She explains that groups of children don’t notice differences in skin color until someone points it out to them.
The prince believes that just as you learn things from your family, there needs to be information available from a wide perspective to temper what you pick up subconsciously and sometimes to supplement it.
While some members of the media have taken a racist tone, others have been calling out the negative treatment and how it seemed to impact the relationship between Markle and the prince, reports The Inquisitr. Some sources believe there was a campaign to “whitewash” Markle to make her more palatable to those who were critical of the prince’s significant other exclusively based on race.