Here’s Why Prince Harry Gets Unfairly Accused Of Not Being King Charles’ Son

Being treated as a red-headed step-child for years didn’t exactly ingratiate Prince Harry to the British media or the royal establishment, especially when his own parentage was frequently called into question with no rebuttal. It’s one of the worst remaining effects of the brutal PR campaign against Princess Diana and still sees constant use in gossip and jokes.

Prince Harry Was Born With A Target On His Back

Much like his late mother, the prince has been the subject of non-stop attacks from the media and branded the black sheep of the royals for not conforming to their standards. His outspoken criticism of the tabloids in particular has made him one of their most frequent targets. Harry’s relationships with his family are a staple of royal gossip, but his connection with King Charles faces a unique criticism.

RELATED: Could King Charles Do What Queen Margrethe Did And Strip Titles From Younger Royals?

It seems as though between the media’s vicious attacks against Princess Diana and the revelation of her extramarital affair with her red-haired riding instructor, James Hewitt, somehow made a concerning amount of people forget that having children isn’t a cloning process. Diana’s youngest son happened to have red hair, much like a number of her family members.

1994 photo of Princess Diana, Prince Harry, Prince William, and King Charles standing together
Princess Diana, her sons Harry and William, and Prince Charles watch the parade march past as part of the commemorations of VJ Day in London in 1994. (Johnny Eggitt/AFP via Getty Images)

Despite this, his young face was put under a microscope to prove that he didn’t look like Charles—though those investigations often leave out the fact that his childhood appearance equally resembled his paternal grandfather. These circumstances apparently proved compelling enough for an untold number of critics to drag both Harry and his mother’s name through the mud by demanding DNA tests or just simply making up their own DNA results.

Why Charles And Harry’s Relationship Is Settled

Harry’s parentage has been called into question more times than we can count, and although none of these stories have ever turned up a scrap of proof, the narrative continues to pop up. Multiple tabloids got away with claiming that someone had leaked a DNA test that proved Harry wasn’t Charles’ son, arguing that Princess Diana’s tennis coach, bodyguard, attendant, or some other man was his real father.

These falsehoods frequently disguise themselves as a part of the imagined war between Harry and his family. Headline after headline has shouted that Harry was getting revenge on Charles by announcing that he wasn’t his father, while an equal amount of magazine covers held that Charles was the one getting even with his son by taking a paternity test. Either way, it’s clear that even in Harry and Charles’ harshest of disagreements, neither father nor son has ever even come close to doing anything remotely like that. We can’t even figure out why they were supposed to do something so aggressive other than it making for a compelling headline.

Harry Is In The Right Place

As boring as it is for Charles to be Harry’s father, it’s the clear truth. The Duke of Sussex is securely in place in the line of succession as the current fifth in line with only Prince William and his three children ahead of him. Even if Charles somehow believed that Harry wasn’t his son, he doesn’t have the power to alter the line of succession, DNA testing or not. 

When a narrative is even partially based on the appearance of a literal child, it’s generally not worth even acknowledging. Fraternal twins can look entirely different from one another, just like how siblings separated by years can seem identical. You’re born with a mix of two people’s DNA, and with all due respect, Charles’ royal genetics had no advantage over Diana’s. As Harry has aged, it’s only become more obvious that he does in fact take after Charles’ side of the family. He may have successfully resigned from the royal institution, but he will always be his father’s son.

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