Jeremy Clarkson Meghan Markle column for The Sun was sexist, regulator IPSO rules after 25,000 complaints
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The press regulator has ruled a column written by Jeremy Clarkson in The Sun in which he wrote about Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex being paraded naked in the street was sexist. However, claims of racism were not upheld.
The article received a record number of complaints, with 25,000 objections sent to the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO). IPSO chairman Lord Faulks said it was "humiliating and degrading” towards the duchess.
In the wake of the controversial opinion piece, Prince Harry and Meghan accused the former Top Gear host of spreading "hate rhetoric". Adding it was also spreading "dangerous conspiracy theories and misogyny".
Following an investigation into the article, Ipso ruled the newspaper had broken its editors’ code of practice because the piece contained a "pejorative and prejudicial reference" to Markle’s sex.
However the committee decided there had been no breach on race grounds. It was decided the phrase “warrior of woke” was not a pejorative reference to Meghan’s race because it was a single article and there was no evidence about how it had affected her specifically and because it was clearly a comment piece and therefore the writer was able to use conjecture.
In the column, Clarkson wrote he was "dreaming of the day when [Meghan] is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while crowds chant, ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her".
He claimed that he had been thinking of a scene from the TV show Game of Thrones but wrote the column ‘in a hurry’ and forgot to add the reference. Both The Sun and Clarkson apologised over the article in December 2022.
When asked if the newspaper would have to pay a fine, Ipso’s chief executive, Charlotte Dewar said: "The remedy that the committee required is the publication of its upheld decision, to let the not only the readers of the Sun, but also the wider public know about the reasons for the finding."