Since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry got engaged in November, the internet has been abuzz with excitement for the next royal wedding. But even though she is already being celebrated by many, Markle still endures quite a bit of racism. On January 14th, the Daily Mail reported that Jo Marney, the girlfriend of politician Henry Bolton, made racist comments about Markle in a text conversation.
Marney, a 25-year-old model, reportedly said in a series of messages that Markle’s marriage to Harry would “taint” the royal family and that black people are “ugly.” The text conversation, which reportedly occurred before she began dating Bolton, was published in the Daily Mail on January 14th and included her saying, “This is Britain, not Africa” when talking about the upcoming royal wedding. Marney apologized to the Daily Mail later on January 14th, saying that her words had been taken out of context.
Bolton, who is the leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party — otherwise known as UKIP — said he would not resign from the party leadership. However, Marney’s comments caused her party membership to be suspended.
Bolton announced on January 15th that he and Marney had broken up. In an interview with ITV News, the politician said he was unaware of Marney’s racist views when he began dating her.
Other members of the party have demanded that Bolton resign in the wake of the scandal. The party’s Deputy Chairwoman, Suzanne Evans, said on the BBC’s Daily Politics that she felt Bolton could still be removed from the party despite him ending the relationship.
If Bolton is removed, UKIP would have to find its fifth leader in less than 18 months. The right-wing political party is most famous for advocating for the U.K. to leave the European Union.
News of Bolton’s relationship with Marney in early January stirred rumors that he was having an affair, although the politician insisted that the relationship began after he separated from his wife.
Marney’s racist comments are unacceptable. Having a black woman in the royal family is a historic event, but more importantly, we know that Markle will make an excellent Duchess of Sussex. We can’t wait for Markle to make her debut as a member of the royal family.