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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle moved to Los Angeles in 2020. The Duke of Sussex has only been in the U.S. for a little over a year, but he’s already starting to get the hang of our customs. For one, he’s beginning to see how easily our First Amendment, the right to free speech, can be abused.

Prince Harry points his left finger
Prince Harry | Valery Macon/AFP via Getty Images

Prince Harry was a guest on Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast on May 13. Their discussion of the duke’s mental health advocacy led Prince Harry to discuss how the First Amendment can make us vulnerable. 

Meghan Markle’s country has a fundamental difference from Prince Harry’s 

One year into his American residency, Prince Harry admits he has much to learn about our constitution. However, he’s spent enough time here to see how not everybody uses free speech for noble purposes.

“I’ve got so much I want to say about the First Amendment as I sort of understand it, but it is bonkers,” he told Shephard. “I don’t want to start going down the First Amendment route because that’s a huge subject and one which I don’t understand because I’ve only been here a short time. But, you can find a loophole in anything. You can capitalize or exploit what’s not said rather than uphold what is said.”

Prince Harry notices conflicts of interest with free speech

Part of Prince Harry’s advocacy includes calling out some of the harmful institutions of society. For example, he spoke to Shepard about how gossip and social media keeps people in a loop of hate. 

“Laws were created to protect people,” he said. “I believe we live in an age now where you’ve got certain elements of the media redefining to us what privacy means. There’s a massive conflict of interest. Then you’ve got social media platforms trying to redefine what free speech means. I wonder why you’re doing that?”

Prince Harry at Prince Philip's funeral
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex | Victoria Jones/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

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Prince Harry warned listeners that corporate interests were manipulating their right to free speech.

“Again, this has been happening for 15 years now,” he said. “The laws have been completely flipped by the very people that need them flipped so they can make more money and they can capitalize off our pain, grief and general self-destructive mode that’s happened at the moment. Conflict of interest is the major piece here.”

What you can do to help 

Fortunately, the duke was not just cautioning about doom and gloom. He said the power is within every individual to deprive those negative influences of power. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex | Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

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“It does come back to supply and demand,” he said. “If we collectively became better at not clicking on or not spreading and sharing the things we know are putting people through hell, then there’s no market for it. The more depressed and the harder life becomes, we end up surrendering to the information parallel with our own feelings.”

Source: Armchair Expert podcast

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