Self-pity is one hell of a drug. On Tuesday, a day late, Prince Harry appeared in the High Court to ‘give evidence’ against the Mirror. The only testimony he was willing to provide, however, was his familiar gloop about the pain he suffered growing up rich, famous and royal. He can’t help himself, poor boy, and we should probably stop indulging him. We won’t, though.
In a 49-page witness statement, the Duke of Sussex tried once again to make peace with himself by blaming the press for everything. ‘You start off as a blank canvas while they work out what kind of a person you are and what kind of problems and temptations you might have,’ he declared. ‘I ended up feeling as though I was playing up to a lot of the headlines and stereotypes that they wanted to pin on me mainly because I thought that, if they are printing this rubbish about me and people were believing it, I may as well “do the crime”.’
It’s not my fault, Your Honour – the media made me this way. Harry admits to suffering from paranoia. It’s possible he thought that he must be the one on trial – after all, on the same day, across the pond, an American federal court was considering whether his visa application should be made public, given that he has admitted to taking drugs.
What’s more likely is that, in his egotism, Harry has come to regard any kind of publicity, even an appearance in a civil court case into phone-hacking, as a therapeutic exercise – another chance to talk through his demons and air his many grievances. It doesn’t work, of course, because the reason Harry needs so much therapy is because of all the publicity he’s received.