Even though protocol bars the royal family from speaking about their personal politics in both public and private, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have let it be known, controversially, that they stand with the LGBT community.
According to the Christian Institute, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex followed 11 pro-LGBT groups on Instagrams at the start of Pride Month, and since the royals only follow a select number of groups at a given time to highlight their work, the move was intentionally political.
"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex used their Instagram account to 'follow' eleven pro-LGBT groups to highlight their work, including prominent lobby group Stonewall," reports the outlet. "The royals only follow a small number of accounts at one time, changing them regularly to give the groups maximum exposure."
In a post featuring various pro-LGBT images that displayed the rainbow flag (a political symbol) alongside a photo of the late-Princess Diana, the Instagram account made bold declarations in defiance of traditional Britons, such as "love is love," while calling for a more "inclusive future."
Continuing with our tradition to rotate the accounts we follow based on causes and social issues that matter to us:
For the month of June we “proudly” shine a light on PRIDE.
This month we pay tribute to the accounts supporting the LGBTQ+ community - those young and old, their families and friends, accounts that reflect on the past and are hopeful for a deservedly more inclusive future.
We stand with you and support you
Because it’s very simple: love is love.
The post stands in violation of the Royal Family's stated protocol, which expressly forbids members from endorsing political opinions or groups of any kind since they are accountable to no voting bloc whatsoever. Typically, the Royals can only engage in "humanitarian issues." Commenters on Instagram were quick to highlight the break with tradition.
"What happened to the Royal family doesn't endorse political beliefs/controversy beliefs one way or the other??" one Instagram user stated.
Diana supported HIV patients not LGBTQ, stop using her for promoting your agenda," said another user.
"You have no respect for the monarchy, its protocols and traditions," said another.
Indeed, both Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have quickly positioned themselves as the social justice warriors of the Royal Family, a move reportedly solidified when rumors spread that the former American actress expressed delight upon Ireland voting to legalize abortion last year. Then, earlier this year, reports surfaced that both Meghan Markle and Prince Harry planned to raise their baby "gender fluid" by avoiding common gender stereotypes.
"Meghan has been talking to some of her friends about the birth and how she and Harry plan to raise their baby," a source told Vanity Fair at the time. "Her exact word was fluid. She said they plan to raise their child with a fluid approach to gender and they won’t be imposing any stereotypes."
Kensington Palace later denounced the story as false.
Prince Harry also faced flack earlier this year for endorsing the pro-transgender group Mermaids under the guise of mental health.