It has recently been reported that Prime Video will be dropping Jeremy Clarkson after the third season of Clarkson’s Farm and the four more Grand Tour specials that have been contracted. This comes after the former Top Gear hosts controversial column that he wrote for The Sun on Meghan Markle. Whilst nothing has been confirmed yet by Prime Video, we are taking a look back at what Clarkson said in the column and why it caused so much upset.
Clarkson wrote that he hates Meghan Markle, he said:
“I hate her. Not like I hate Nicola Sturgeon or Rose West. I hate her on a cellular level.”
“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 every town in Britain while the crowds chant, ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her.”
Clarkson was criticised once again for being racist through “utterly vile and disgusting comments”. The column received a record-breaking number of complaints in the few days that it was published before Clarkson requested The Sun take it down.
The Grand Tour host took to his Twitter to say he was “horrified to have caused so much hurt” and that he was making a Game Of Thrones reference. He wrote:
“Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it. 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. I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future.”
Yesterday, Clarkson took to his Instagram to post a full explanation and apology about the column. He posted the following via Instagram:
“One of the strange things I’ve noticed in recent times is that whenever an MP or a well-known person is asked to apologise for something, no matter how heartfelt or profound that apology may be, it’s never enough for the people who called for it in the first place.
“So I’m going to try and buck the trend this morning with an apology for the things I said in a Sun column recently about Meghan Markle. I really am sorry. All the way from the balls of my feet to the follicles on my head. This is me putting my hands up. It’s a mea culpa with bells on.”
“Usually, I read what I’ve written to someone else before filing, but I was home alone on that fateful day, and in a hurry. So when I’d finished, I just pressed send. And then, when the column appeared the next day, the land mine exploded.
“It was a slow rumble to start with and I ignored it. But then the rumble got louder. So I picked up a copy of The Sun to see what all the fuss was about. We’ve all been there, I guess. In that precise moment when we suddenly realise we’ve completely messed up. You are sweaty and cold at the same time. And your head pounds. And you feel sick. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Had I really said that? It was horrible.”
“I knew what had happened straight away. I’d been thinking of a scene in Game of Thrones, but I’d forgotten to mention this. So it looked like I was actually calling for revolting violence to rain down on Meghan’s head.
“I was very angry with myself because in all those controversial days on Top Gear, when I was accused of all sorts of things, it was very rarely sexism. We never did “women can’t park” gags for instance. Or suggested that powerful cars were only for men. And I was thrilled when Jodie Kidd and Ellen MacArthur set fastest ever laps in our reasonably priced car. I’m just not sexist and I abhor violence against women. And yet I seemed to be advocating just that.
“I was mortified and so was everyone else. My phone went mad. Very close friends were furious. Even my own daughter took to Instagram to denounce me. The Sun quickly apologised, and I tried to explain myself.
“But still, there were calls for me to be sacked and charged with a hate crime. More than 60 MPs demanded action to be taken. ITV, who make Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, and Amazon, who make the Farm Show and the Grand Tour, were incandescent.
“I therefore wrote to everyone who works with me saying how sorry I was and then on Christmas morning, i e-mailed Harry and Meghan in California to apologise to them too. I said I was baffled by what they had been saying on TV but that the language I’d used in my column was disgraceful and that I was profoundly sorry.