Piers Morgan walked off “Good Morning Britain” on Tuesday after getting into a heated debate with the show’s weatherman, who accused the former CNN host of “trashing” Meghan Markle.
The spat came a day after Markle, the duchess of Sussex, sat down with her husband Prince Harry for an interview with Oprah Winfrey, during which she accused unnamed royals of being racist. Markle’s father is white and her mother is black.
Beresford, who is also biracial, said Morgan has a grudge against Markle.
“I understand that you’ve got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle and she cut you off,” he said, according to The Daily Mail. “I understand that you don’t like Meghan Markle, you’ve made it so clear a number of times on this program, a number of times.”
“She’s entitled to cut you off if she wants to,” he added. “Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don’t think she has. But yet you continue to trash her.”
Beresford also defended Markle. “There was bad press around the engagement before the engagement and everything that has followed since has been incredibly damaging, quite clearly to Meghan’s mental health and also to Harry.”
Morgan then stormed off the live show, saying, “‘OK, I’m done with this. Sorry. You can trash me mate but not on my own show. See you later.” He came back a short time later and told Beresford that he would stay if they had a debate in a “civilized manner.”
“You launching into a pretty personally derogatory monologue on one of your colleagues probably isn’t one of the best ways to go about it,” Morgan said. “As much as I’d like to sit here taking abuse from you, that’s not going to happen.”
Beresford fired back: “I’m not trying to come on this show and take you down. Just because we’re on the same side we have to have the same view.”
“This whole situation is very personal for me and I’m by no way, shape or form accusing you of being racist. I have the luxury of knowing you on and off screen and we’ve had conversations, I know where you stand on this and I have a great amount of respect for you, Piers,” he said.
Morgan then said, “I wanted you on the show today because you sent me a really thoughtful and nuanced message about all this and I thought we could have a thoughtful nuanced conversation.”
Said Beresford: “I’m tired of finding a different way to explain not to you, but to so many people, on why what has been said is so wrong. … I’ve walked into institutions as the only person of color and experienced covert and overt racism on so many occasions and why the Meghan interview really resonates with me is because an ex-work colleague — not on this show — asked me if I was worried about the shade of cocoa that my son was going to come out.”
Morgan said he doesn’t have a “racist bone” in his body, and Beresford agreed, saying, “I don’t feel that you are a racist… but that’s why I just feel the stance you were taking on it yesterday was so strong I just felt it was slightly clouded because you’ve had an experience with her.”
After the clash, Beresford wrote on Twitter: “I wish I had the privilege to sit on the fence. In order for me to do that I would have to strip myself of my identity and that’s not something I can do. It’s not any of our places to pick apart claims of racism in order to make us to feel more comfortable.”