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A French publication published photos of Kate Middleton, whose diet I am following because I too want to end up marrying royalty. Sure, there are a few obstacles to that but none to do with my figure. Yes, a French publication published photos of the Duchess of Cambridge, topless while taking in the sun on a private French estate.
Baring half or everything is a Western thing. Out on a stroll in the woods, upper class American or English men will suddenly take off all their clothes and jump of a jetty into a pond and romp in the muddy water without any regard to the female company, which largely ignores them. I saw this for myself when a professor at nearby Monterrey Naval War College suddenly disrobed on Monterrey beach and ran into the ice-cold surf, shrinking his gonads to raisins. The photos of the topless Duchess were taken with zoom lenses or from a French satellite.
Coming on the heels of Prince Harry's brazen exposure of British wherewithal in Las Vegas, which has put diminutive Asian men to shame, this raised eyebrows not to mention opened eyes wide and dropped jaws. But that is not what is interesting. What is interesting was CNN's handling of it in one newscast.
A CNN whatever you call them interviewed the head of British censorship with a series of leading questions such as, "Tell us what is the point of the royal family threatening legal action when the photos are already out there and the damage is done?"
Followed by, "And what is the point of the royal family taking legal action with the social media able," though so far unwilling, "to put out the photos from the French magazine."
And what is the point of any response from the royal family when it will make the issue bigger; strongly suggesting that if the royals take the insult they will suffer less in silence.
And since Prince William's mother was killed by the media and is therefore biased against them, CNN said, "What does that say of the royal family’s aggression" - that was the word used, aggression - "in taking action" against another violation of the privacy of yet another member of the royal family.
"And what is the point of the royal family taking legal action for any reason? Sure they can recover damages but the publications will just think, so, 'Okay we'll pay the fine but we will still make more money pandering to the public taste for royal nudity.'"
The British censor looked thoroughly annoyed at the silliness of CNN's questions but failed to express himself clearly. Here are the points he made or should have made.
Just because the photos are out there and the damage is done is no reason not to take legal action. It is the best reason for taking legal action because without damage there is no cause of action.
Sure the social media can pick up the photos but there are applications for tracing who does, not least by the publications who paid for the photos and will want to be paid back for their wider circulation.
If the publications spread the photos for free, as they are now doing, so as to worsen the damage that will only show more malice and increase the penalty.
And while it is true that Prince William may feel a bit peeved at media for harassing another member of his family, pretty much like how media murdered his mother, only to weep buckets over her mangled corpse pretty much like this administration threw itself on the coffin of Robredo after putting him there, so to speak, this only goes to motivation for taking legal action which is irrelevant. Motive is important only in the commission of crimes and not in resorting to legal remedies against crimes.
And it is not true that publications will just pay the fine and go on pandering to public prurience because it pays more. Courts can award damages so big as to financially destroy the publication, its owners, reporters and "phot-hogs".
And finally if the TV newscaster is right about there being no point in taking legal action, the royal family might drop a fateful hint - at least I would - to the SAS now with Prince Harry in Afghanistan.
And while one might say that taking action against a tasteless exercise of press freedom is a slippery slope that may slide into the chilling of free speech with regard to more useful not to say tasteful issues like graft and corruption, I say, So what? Where's the loss to the world of dead scum.
Besides, there will always be real men, real journalists, out there who take on governments and world power, men like John Pilger and before him I.F. Stone whose stories hardly appear in the mainstream media and get hardly any attention in social media yet go on writing the truth to power and not half-truths and outright lies on behalf of power as happened in the Corona impeachment.
Notice also that no publication anywhere in the world has ever put out photos of topless women of crime families like Cosa Nostra. This is not because crime families are conservative compared to royals but because publishers may do so only at grave risk to their lives and that of their children. There is no coward like a journalist.
In short, the fact that the media enjoy cheap stunts is no reason not to make those stunts costly to perform or even permanently disabling. This is why only journalists mourn the killing of journalists.