U.K. media personality Jeremy Clarkson issued a non-apology Monday after his weekend column about Meghan Markle in The Sun was widely condemned as violent and misogynistic.
“Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it,” the entertainer wrote on Twitter. “In a column I wrote about Meghan, I made a clumsy reference to a scene in Game of Thrones and this has gone down badly with a great many people.”
Clarkson said he was “horrified to have caused so much hurt” and promised to “be more careful in future,” but did not apologize.
Clarkson wrote in his column that he hated Meghan “on a cellular level” after the Netflix docuseries “Harry & Meghan.”
“At night, I’m unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of Britain while the crowds chant ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her,” the divisive broadcaster wrote.
Misan Harriman, a photographer, activist and close friend of the Sussexes, took issue with Clarkson’s tweet.
“No, this isn’t clumsy, it is dangerous,” she wrote. “You have millions of followers, it takes one person to read what you write as a call to action and the worst could happen. Furthermore is the comparison to Rose West clumsy? Or more in the realm of normality for you?”
Many ― including Clarkson’s own daughter and Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who Clarkson also scorned ― denounced his statements on social media.
“I think what he said about Meghan Markle was deeply misogynist and just downright awful and horrible,” Sturgeon said. “I have to say, taking a step back from it, my overwhelming emotion about guys like Jeremy Clarkson is pity.”
Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, wrote on Twitter that “As Jeremy Clarkson should well know — words have consequences.”
“The words in his piece are no joke — they’re dangerous and inexcusable,” Khan continued. “We are in an epidemic of violence against women and girls and men with powerful voices must do better than this.”
Peter Hunt, a former BBC correspondent, pointed out that the royals have been silent on Clarkson’s commentary. He added “a reminder that they do, sometimes, speak out,” with a photo of Prince William condemning racism in soccer via Twitter:
Clarkson rubbed shoulders with royalty just last week, as the “Clarkson’s Farm” star attended a Christmas party with Camilla, the queen consort. Piers Morgan, another Duchess of Sussex critic, was also in attendance.
The party on Wednesday was the day before the final three episodes of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Netflix docuseries “Harry & Meghan” aired.
In the series, the former “Suits” actor spoke of the violent and misogynistic press and how that affected her emotional and physical well-being.
“I’m a mom. That’s my real life,” Meghan said in Episode 5. “And that’s the piece when you see it and you go, ‘You are making people want to kill me. It’s not just a tabloid. It’s not just some story. You are making me scared.’”
“And that night, to be up and down in the middle of the night, looking down my hallway, like, ‘Are we safe? Are the doors locked? Is security on?’ That’s real,’” Meghan said, getting emotional. ”‘Are my babies safe?’ And you’ve created it for what? Because you’re bored, or because it sells your papers, or it makes you feel better about your own life? It’s real ― what you’re doing. And that’s the piece I don’t think people fully understand.”