There are some to whom Meghan Markle is representative of the struggle and prejudices people of colour face in modern Britain. And there are others to whom she is the antichrist.

There really doesn’t seem to be an in between (although I suppose to Piers Morgan she is the woman who ghosted him once and should be sentenced to death by hanging for not wanting to meet him for coffee again).

Well, to the Royal Family this week she has been the subject of an inquiry – an inquiry into whether or not she exhibited bullying behaviour towards palace staff.

Firstly, let us all collectively note that the Royals prioritised an inquiry into this, before an inquiry into Prince Andrew's friendship with a paedophile. If it were me, I dare say I’d be a tad more concerned about the man who befriended an infamous sex trafficker and consequently paid large sums to of money to make allegations of sexual abuse go away, as opposed to the woman who sent a few emails after 10pm. But hey, call me a snowflake.

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The inquiry ultimately saw Meghan Markle be cleared of bullying claims, with recommendations for HR improvements within the palace. But, frankly, the result of the inquiry is irrelevant. Because what the inquiry and the prior allegations symbolise are more impactful – an inherent need to keep women of colour in their place.

The ‘Angry Black Woman’ stereotype is one that is weaponised time and time again – we are told we are bullies when we have the audacity to share an opinion that is anything other than agreeable and subservient. God forbid we dare to be authoritative.

Forbes Magazine has even cited the ‘Angry Black Woman’ stereotype as being one of the biggest limitations to progress in the workplace for women of colour.

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What gives this stereotype a particularly dangerous edge, is the viciousness with which it is paired with victimhood. You only need an ounce of societal and cultural awareness to know that women of colour are the least respected demographic in the Western world with the least access to equality and opportunity.

So when you take someone whose voice is already very limited and cry crocodile tears when they use what little voice they’ve been allowed, you’re committing one of the most harmful yet covert forms of modern racism.

Unsurprisingly, this is often committed by the types of people who cry when you highlight their racist tendencies, yet again making themselves the victim and silencing the real sufferer. Do you see the pattern?

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Women of colour have been silenced by the ‘Angry Black Woman’ stereotype so routinely, that the accusations made against Meghan Markle were, if anything, inevitable. Laughably so. Cue the collective eye roll from every woman of colour who has ever been told she’s been ‘aggressive’ or a ‘bully’ for merely displaying confidence.

For some, she became the devil-incarnate when she had the cheek to think herself worthy of marrying a prince (thank God it was just the ‘spare’ prince though, rigth?). For others (notably the British media), she embodied the devil when she thought it acceptable to speak with confidence and autonomy. From there on out, the bingo card of racism was stamped left, right and centre:

She’s from the ‘hood' – check.

She’s singlehandedly caused drought and murder through eating avocados – check.

She’s living a life of luxury at the expense of the British tax payer (the same British tax payer who foots the Royal Family’s bill year after year whilst she can actually afford to pay for herself and does so with money she has earned in her own self-carved career) – check.

She’s definitely jealous of Kate – her white counterpart, who conveniently can do no wrong – even though she has neither said nor done anything publicly which would substantiate such a claim – check.

And for a full house…

She’s an ‘Angry Black Woman’ who bullies people – check.

READ MORE: Prince Harry wins High Court defamation claim against Mail on Sunday

The real tragedy in the ongoing degradation of Meghan Markle is that none of this is a shock. The lies spread about her, the slurs made, the general feeling from those who ‘definitely are not racist’ but for some reason cannot work out why they dislike her so much – they’re the same prejudices women of colour experience on a daily basis. The only difference is, that when it happens to her, it is splashed across the tabloids. That is why we sympathise with her so strongly and defend her so vehemently.

If I had a pound for every time somebody unfairly called me ‘aggressive’ or a ‘bully’, I’d probably have enough money to foot the bill for Prince Andrew’s pay-offs. 

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