Another day, another instance of racism connected to the royal family.
This time, it’s longtime royal aide Lady Susan Hussey, who, apparently was unable to simply be in the presence of a Black person without being racist and inappropriate. On Wednesday, Hussey said she will step down from her post over the incident, which all started when she encountered a Black guest at a Buckingham Palace reception.
At the reception, held Tuesday for organizations working against violence against women and girls, Hussey encountered Ngozi Fulani, who works for Sistah Space, an organization that helps women of African and Caribbean descent who have been victims of domestic violence. In a tweet that included a recap of the events, Fulani recounts how a woman she refers to only as “Lady SH” made a series of increasingly uncomfortable remarks about Fulani’s ethnic background, at one point asking her, “What part of Africa are YOU from?” Despite Fulani’s insistence that she had born and raised in England, Hussey kept pressing. Fulani tweeted that, after telling her that her parents had come to the U.K. in the 1950s, Hussey declared, “I knew we’d get there in the end, you’re Caribbean!”
Meghan Markle tried to tell y’all.
“Mixed feelings about yesterday’s visit to Buckingham Palace,” Fulani tweeted. “10 mins after arriving, a member of staff, Lady SH, approached me, moved my hair to see my name badge. The conversation below took place. The rest of the event is a blur.”
Right now, there’s probably a litany of white people who are groaning themselves into a tizzy and wondering what was so racist about a white woman simply being interested in a Black woman’s ethnicity.
First of all, you don’t touch a Black woman’s hair without her permission. I’m not sure why folks are still having such a hard time grasping that.
Secondly, white people really don’t understand how annoying white people are when they get around one of the few (or only) Black people in the room. It’s annoying to be hypervisible just because you’re Black. It’s annoying when white people respond to seeing a Black person by invading their personal space just to grill them on various things related to their Blackness.
Third, when a Black person is obviously uncomfortable with a white person’s line of “hey, I noticed you’re Black” questions—maybe just STFU and leave them alone instead of being entitled and pressing them until your entitled whiteness is satisfied.
How about white folks like Hussey just learn the value of minding their own business?
Anyway, here’s more from Intelligencer:
The woman was identified in the press as Hussey, though Buckingham Police did not confirm her identity. In a statement, a palace spokesperson said, “We take this incident extremely seriously and have investigated immediately to establish the full details. In this instance, unacceptable and deeply regrettable comments have been made.” The spokesperson also specified that Hussey wanted to apologize for the incident and was stepping away from her role with the royals.
The palace’s quick response, which presumably included shoving Hussey out the door, contrasted with its hesitance to address the allegation Markle made during a blockbuster interview with Oprah Winfrey last year. The Duchess of Sussex claimed that, before she and Prince Harry’s son Archie was born, unnamed royals had raised concerns about his potential skin color. The palace’s brief statement days 36 hours later — in which it said, “While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately” — was criticized by many.
Maybe they should just stop being racist, then they wouldn’t have to keep updating their racism apology template. Just sayin’.
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