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Prince Harry: a different kind of royal

By Nina Steele 

To say that Prince Harry is universally liked may be an overstatement, but it won’t be too far from the truth. Yes he may not be everyone’s cup of tea, particularly those with republican tendencies, but for supporters of the royal family, it seems he can do no wrong.

He has a natural ability to connect with people in a way that others in the royal family are not able to do. Even more interesting is the fact that that love affair seems to insulate him from real opprobrium, even when his behaviour is deemed inappropriate for a royal of such standing.

You guessed it. I am referring here to the time when naked pictures of him were leaked to the press. Most people in the public eye who are deemed role models would have been heavily criticised for it, let alone someone who was then third in line to the throne. Not only did Harry survive the scandal, but people warmed to him even more, because most of them saw him as a breath of fresh air, compared to the other, mostly ‘stuffy’ members of the royal family.

In short, Harry can do no wrong. Still, it seems, that admiration has its limits, or maybe Harry himself would like to think so. That limit, is fatherhood.

In many interviews, Harry seems to want to reassure the public that he does want to start a family at some point. If that is what he really wants then I am fine with it. However, if he is trying to put people’s mind at rest because he feels that fatherhood is something that is expected of him, then that would be a shame.

As a supporter of the royal family, I of course would like to see a smooth transition when the Queen passes away. Unless a catastrophe strikes the House of Windsor, I think it is fair to say that issues of succession will not be a problem any time soon.

With the birth of Prince George and Princess Charlotte, Harry has gone from being third in line to the throne to fifth. Not only that, there are many other royals waiting in the wings, if ever there was a need to look for a successor beyond Prince Charles and his direct descendants. With that in mind, I don’t see why Harry should worry about following convention.

I am sure that some staunch royalists expect him to marry and have children, and would not settle for anything less. Equally as this is the 21st century, I also suspect that many people would not care one way or the other.

People often go on about the need for the royal family to embrace modernity, which is why a law was passed recently giving girls equal rights to the throne. This ended a 300 year old law, in which first born sons were given priority over girls.

With such a bold move, we can surely also accept that just like many people in society today, there is nothing wrong with having an unmarried and childless Prince, particularly if the future of the monarchy is not at stake.

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