Racism row erupts on TV show during Meghan Markle debate

A nasty feud erupted between an actor and an audience member amid a discussion about Meghan Markle and racism during an episode of UK television show Question Time.

While on the topic of Meghan Markle and the press coverage surrounding her, Rachel Boyle said the “press has torn her to pieces”.

“Let’s be really clear about what this is, let’s call it by its name – it’s racism,” the lecturer in race ethnicity at the UK’s Edge Hill University told panelists.

Actor Laurence Fox, star of ITV drama Lewis, clapped back in disagreement, saying he had grown tired of people pinning the blame on race attacks.

Fox turned the tables on the racism debate, suggesting it was Ms Boyle who was discriminating against him. Source: BBC/Question Time

“We're the most tolerant, lovely country in Europe… it's so easy to throw the charge of racism at everybody and it's really starting to get boring,” Fox said.

In response, Ms Boyle accused Fox of not being qualified to speak on the matter due to being a white male.

“What worries me about your comment is you are a white privileged male who has no experience in this,” she said.

He then suggested that perhaps it was Ms Boyle who was behaving in a racist manner towards him.

Meghan Markle was the subject of fierce debate sparked by an audience member alleging it was racism that drove her away. Source: AAP

“I can't help what I am, I was born like this, it's an immutable characteristic, so to call me a white privileged male is to be racist – you're being racist.”

Opinions on the matter were divided in the wake of the show, with audience members appearing to applaud Fox’s response, while many showed their support of Ms Boyle later on social media.

Ms Boyle was the first to point out the filming didn’t go smoothly, taking to Twitter to state she had fallen out with Fox and upset the audience for calling “the treatment of Meghan Markle what it is – ‘racism’”.

“I mean, if Fox being ‘I’m so booored’ (sic) of ‘white privileged male’ isn’t the epitome of White Privileged Male then, what is? All I know about race is I’m privileged. You stood firm in the truth,” one person replied.

“Thank you for calling this out and having the courage to pursue it in the face of so much crappy behaviour,” another wrote.

Others took the position of Fox, one writing how they too were “fed up with the race card being pulled out at everything and anything”.

“To call Fox a privileged white male is racist! You have never walked in his shoes! So all the criticism and hounding of Princess Diana in the press was racist too?” one person responded.

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