The Prince of Wales has the coronavirus. That’s right, the one-time “world’s most eligible bachelor ,” Prince Charles, has tested positive for Covid-19.
According to his “office”, the Prince is displaying mild symptoms of the disease, but otherwise remains in “good health.”
The thing is, who cares? Really, I couldn’t care less that a social virus like Prince Charles has caught a biological virus like Covid-19.
And given that the U.K. government is failing to test people with severe coronavirus symptoms, the fact that a parasite like Charles can receive a test after what’s basically a mild cold should be cause for protest, not concern.
This morning, Prince Charles’ official residence — Clarence House — released a statement. In it, the Prince’s representatives confirmed that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.
Of course, more interesting than the diagnosis is the claim that the Prince has “been working from home” since coming down with symptoms. Working from home?! What’s he been doing: shaking hands with the butlers and asking them “What do you do?“?
Still, despite this questionable claim, some members of the public have responded sympathetically to the news.
Clarence House also confirmed that Prince Charles’ wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, has tested negative for the coronavirus . It also acknowledged that neither Charles nor his staff have any idea as to how exactly the Prince was infected.
It is not possible to ascertain from whom the prince caught the virus owing to the high number of engagements he carried out in his public role during recent weeks.
What Clarence House didn’t acknowledge, however, was whether the Prince may have continued to spread the disease after picking it up.
But while a few members of the British public do have sympathy for Prince Charles, most have responded angrily to the news.
Why? Well, because the Prince was able to receive a test after displaying only mild symptoms. Not only that, but his wife received testing despite not having any symptoms at all.
Fair enough, you might think. But in the U.K., even people displaying severe symptoms aren’t receiving tests , with the government simply telling them to stay at home. In fact, even NHS doctors treating people with the coronavirus aren’t receiving tests .
Hence, Britain’s exploding number of coronavirus cases. And because of the lack of testing for the vulnerable and those with stronger symptoms, most people have reacted bitterly to the news of Charles’ diagnosis.
Superficially, Charles’ announcement is merely an occasion for sympathy. However, it has turned into yet another example of how the British monarchy — and the British establishment — rests on privilege, inequality, and injustice.
The Royal Family has long been a symbol of nearly everything that’s wrong with Britain. And with the coronavirus swamping the U.K., it’s now a symbol of how the British government has botched the job of stemming the Covid-19 tide.
So rather than feeling sorry for Prince Charles, let’s feel sorry for everyone the U.K. government is failing to help. This includes the five million self-employed people who haven’t been guaranteed any financial help . It includes 20 million people who rent their homes . And it includes the NHS doctors and nurses who aren’t being tested for Covid-19.
So yeah, forgive me for not caring that the Prince of Wales has the coronavirus.