On the flip side, a lot of people are cutting him some slack – he’s a young man, sowing his wild oats. Isn’t he fun?
Aside from public opinion on what’s appropriate behavior and what isn’t, let’s look at the fact of the matter – something could’ve gone horribly wrong.
Here we have a young lad who is completely fine with getting naked with strangers. Apparently, he has no qualms about ending up largely defenseless. He comes off looking like a ripe target for blackmail. Or worse, kidnapping. His friends were a part of all of this, too, but if they were just as drunk and silly, what good are they?
While this incident certainly does no favors for Harry in the discretion department, it certainly doesn’t make his bodyguards look too quick, either. I blame the prince for reckless behavior, but I also blame his security detail.
Harry is a prince, the grandson of a queen and son of a future king. Those they employ to protect them must know that there are legions of people ready to take advantage of them. I wonder how much that sneaky snapper was paid for their photos? How about the video? Who might possibly try to come forward with a little redheaded Harry, Jr. looking for money? Prince Albert of Monaco could give Harry a few tips on what not to do with random women!
What about someone looking to nab Harry as a ransom? Just because Harry is a strapping male doesn’t mean he’s completely safe. Drink and hormones can weaken a fun-lovin’ boy’s defenses to the point where anything could happen. This time it was just some sneaky photos. Harry could potentially end up creating another Profumo-style scandal if he’s this reckless. Better hope that the Cambridges put a lot of room between Harry and the throne at this rate.
It’s not security’s job to make moral judgements, their job is to keep their charge safe. I do think they failed on this one. They got lucky in that Harry is just embarrassed. Next time, the ending might not be quite so jolly, for him or the nation. Someone is going to have to draw a line somewhere, whether their boss likes it or not.
• Does Harry have the last word on his personal security?
• What if someone had brought a gun?
• People were after Harry for DNA to prove Charles’ paternity. I guess this isn’t an issue anymore?
• What changes will be made after this?
The Wisdom Of Queens
Sally Bedell Smith writes for TIME magazine:
Few remember now, but the regally wrinkled Queen Elizabeth II was once called the World’s Sweetheart. Trained for her role from birth by her parents and various tutors, she walked onto the world stage at age 25 fully equipped to do honor to her post. Kate Middleton, now the Duchess of Cambridge, entered the spotlight without a lifetime of preparation, but she seems open to learning how to play her part.
During Elizabeth’s 60 years on the throne–the longest reign in the 1,000-year history of the British monarchy, save for Queen Victoria’s–she has evolved from ingenue to wise grandmother …
From this week’s issue of TIME, on newsstands January 6th. [Read more]
This DVD contains over two hours of official BBC coverage of the April 29th wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. It is also on sale – as of May 24th – through the BBC’s online shop.
Queen Elizabeth II has returned home from her historic visit to Ireland.
Her Majesty’s speech during her visit moved many, but her mere presence was what spoke the loudest. No British monarch has visited the shores of the Emerald Isle in 100 years. The last British sovereign to set foot on Irish soil was the Queen’s grandfather, King George V, who visited Ireland in 1911 with his consort, Queen Mary.
It is fitting, then, that the Queen should be the next monarch to visit the Republic of Éire. King George and Queen Mary had a profound effect on a young Elizabeth. Though no one knew it at the time, the training Princess Elizabeth received from her august grandparents would stand her in good stead as queen.
Dressed in green and smiling brightly, the Queen shook hands with Irish President Mary McAleese. President McAleese did not curtsy, which in my view is appropriate. To do so would have resulted in a tricky political issue at such an historic moment.
The Queen visited the Garden of Remembrance, the memorial garden in Dublin dedicated to the memory of “all those who gave their lives in the cause of Irish Freedom”, where she laid a wreath; she toured the Guinness Storehouse; the National Stud at Kildare (of course!); and met with traders at the English Market in Cork.
The Queen also acknowledged the “sad and regrettable” mistakes of Britain’s relationship with Ireland during her state dinner in Dublin. Below, an excerpt of her speech:
‘A hUachtarain agus a chairde (President and friends).
Madam President, Prince Philip and I are delighted to be here, and to experience at first hand Ireland’s world-famous hospitality.
Together we have much to celebrate: the ties between our people, the shared values, and the economic, business and cultural links that make us so much more than just neighbours, that make us firm friends and equal partners.
The lessons from the peace process are clear; whatever life throws at us, our individual responses will be all the stronger for working together and sharing the load.
There are other stories written daily across these islands which do not find their voice in solemn pages of history books, or newspaper headlines, but which are at the heart of our shared narrative. Many British families have members who live in this country, as many Irish families have close relatives in the United Kingdom.
These families share the two islands; they have visited each other and have come home to each other over the years. They are the ordinary people who yearned for the peace and understanding we now have between our two nations and between the communities within those two nations; a living testament to how much in common we have.
These ties of family, friendship and affection are our most precious resource. They are the lifeblood of the partnership across these islands, a golden thread that runs through all our joint successes so far, and all we will go on to achieve.
They are a reminder that we have much to do together to build a future for all our grandchildren: the kind of future our grandparents could only dream of.
So we celebrate together the widespread spirit of goodwill and deep mutual understanding that has served to make the relationship more harmonious, close as good neighbours should always be.
Good luck in Ireland today, President Obama. You have a tough act to follow.
Historic Visit – An Irish View