Ever since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry got engaged, all anyone can talk about is her hair, her style, and her “sparkle.” But what we really should be talking about is what a humanitarian she is.
By now, you’ve probably heard about Meghan Markle the feminist, but let us introduce you to Meghan Markle the activist.
Meghan was 11 years old when she first lept into action. She wrote a letter to then-First Lady Hillary Clinton, attorney Gloria Allred and a local news source asking them to pull a sexist advertisement for soap implying that women belong in the kitchen.
They all wrote back, and the commercial was altered to delete sexist language. That was an early example of her soon-to-be cultivated ‘do-gooder’ resume.
The 11-year-old activist grew up to become the United Nations Women’s Advocate for Political Participation and Leadership, where she opened a speech at UN Women declaring her pride for her gender. She said,
“I am proud to be a woman. I am proud to be a feminist. To me, equality means that President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, whose country I recently visited as part of my mission with UN Women, it means that he is equal to the little girl in the Djembe refugee camp who is dreaming about being president one day.”
In Rwanda, Meghan met with local families to hear their stories of living with unclean water. With World Visions Clean Water Campaign, She helped construct 12 clean water points for a Rwandan community to keep girls in school, so that they didn’t need to stay home to travel miles for clean water.
“It’s not just about clean drinking water but what it’s doing for their education, what it’s doing to keep these kids in school, what it’s doing for them not having medical bills.”
Meghan also met with political leaders in Rwanda, and in her speech, she pointed out the fact that in a third-world country, the parliament is made up of 64% women. *Pauses for shade to the United States*
Meghan later traveled to Afghanistan on a United Service Organizations tour, where she met with troops alongside a US General.
Meghan has also taken down sexism right in her own backyard when she called out Suits writers at the One Young World Summit in Canada in 2016.
“This season, every script seemed to begin with [my character] wearing a towel, okay? Nope, not doing it anymore. Not doing it. I called the creator and I was like, ‘It’s just gratuitous.’ We get it. You’ve already seen it once so I think at a certain point you feel empowered enough to just say no. And it’s a challenging thing to do if you don’t know your worth and your value you’re not going to speak up. It also starts with the men, across the board. A lot of the decision makers are the men, you need the men to stand up and empower women.”
After the engagement announcement, UN Women said in a statement,
“[We] trust and hope that in her new and important public role she will continue to use her visibility and voice to support the advancement of gender equality.”
We have no doubt that Meghan will continue her activism, but this time on a whole new level.
As a feminist, a biracial woman, and an activist, Meghan’s presence in the Royal family is so valuable and honestly the best news we’ve heard in probably months. They’re lucky to have her.
And also the fact that Barack and Michelle Obama might be invited to the wedding but Tr*mp won’t is really great, too.
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Anne Catherine Demere is an intern with Femestella. She is almost too passionate about pop culture and the entertainment industry and she loves to write about it. One of her favorite things is when feminism and pop culture overlap. She’s either starting a new TV show or in class, there’s no in between. And those two rarely coincide.