An outright conspiracy took place on Saturday, May 19, 2018; a veritable coup d’état if you will, but of the subtle, intelligent kind.
We pause to nod at the Father of Time; the Ancient of Days who was from the beginning. He has done it again. For we can worship at His temple all our days, build cathedrals to Him, and never even know Him.
The entire world watched with absolute horror twenty years ago when Diana, Princess of Wales, met her untimely death. The world has grieved for her ever since, and has never forgotten her.
Diana would have been relegated to the pages of history, in company with many respectable men and women whose names are written in its pages but not on human hearts. But she was the people’s princess; a woman with a heart who singularly tried to melt the iciness that was characteristic of the British aristocracy. Alas, she was ahead of her time, and her overtures unwelcomed.
The world has yet watched with baited breath to see what would become of her two sons, William and Harry, growing up without their mother in the lights of the cameras and in the hands of the royal family.
Some events, regardless of where they take place, capture the interest of the entire world. That is because they touch humanity in some deep way. In journalism, we call those ‘human interest stories’. They remind us that there is more that unites us as humans than divides us; that we are more alike than we are different; that there are common threads that bind us, rendering our varied hues negligible.
Oh Diana! We mourned for you on Saturday! We wanted you there! Not just in spirit, but in person! We wanted to share your victory! But in your absence, we showed up anyway on your behalf. We were there, tens of thousands of us – those you loved. We came from Trinidad and Tobago, California and Ohio, Jamaica and South Africa. We made the sacrifice, and we were there. On that one day, you once again united the world.
This is what you wanted, wasn’t it? Did you ever believe your mission would be accomplished from the grave? Did you realize you had instilled it in our boys, William and Harry? Yes, they are our boys too! We have worried about them, mourned their struggles with your absence, and now we have rejoiced in their triumphs. You must be proud. Both William and Harry, all grown up and married! Well, to put it Britishly, we are positively beside ourselves!
The British crown looked mortified as an African-American Episcopal bishop lectured them on the subject of love; as a black young man played the Ave Maria on cello and without flaw; as an Orthodox Priest read from the book of common prayer; as an African-American choir sang ‘Stand By Me’ at St. George’s Chapel; and as your baby gave his wedding ring bearing your jewels to an African-American beauty – delicious irony.
There were no smiles from the Queen of England on the occasion of her grandson’s wedding and few from the Archbishop of Canterbury as the black bishop tried to engage him during the discourse, but to no avail. Your Charles was given the task of walking your daughter-in-law of color down the isle.
At the end of the ceremony, the singing of ‘God Save the Queen’ almost sounded satirical – as if indeed, only God could save her now. As she left the occasion, a young lady of color closed her carriage door.
The royal family has changed forever. The train has left the station twenty years after they locked it and threw away the key.
We daresay, Madam Princess, on this auspicious occasion, mother of the groom, that you deserve posthumously the Nobel Peace Prize. Congratulations. You did well!
It is on your shoulders that Her Royal Highness Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, will stand.