I wasn't particularly interested in watching
another program on Princess Diana, but because
it was Frontline I was interested to see what
approach it might take. The historical overview of the
Royal Family and the media was fascinating and
truly caught my interest. As society and the
Information Age changed the Royal Family discovered
that it too would need to change its relationship
with the media.
What I was not prepared for was Frontline's "closing
arguments" that Diana was playing a dangerous
game with the media and lost. The media became a
necessary evil in her public and private life.
Was she using the media when she was photographed
at social events, or calling attention to
causes that others turn away from? As a mother
isn't it normal to protect your children (i.e.,
from the cameras) and yet teach them how they
will need to exist and function in the real
world? The contrast of seeing Diana harassed
by a photographer in the airport versus solo
photos of her in a bathing suit (obviously taken
with those three foot lenses) does not support
the idea to me that Diana "used" the media in
a calculated way. The program faulted her for
even talking or joking with the media. Is any
situation supposed to be all or nothing?
Right or wrong Diana was a human being first.
Under the pressures of being the most photographed
woman in the world beginning at such a young
age Diana had the right to tell her story in
whatever way she saw fit. Being beautiful,
famous, of royalty, and a humanitarian does not
give the media to take away all rights to
Citrus Heights, CA
Is your program some sort of cover-up for what the media has done to
"The Peoples Princess"
I was not pleased to hear some statements which really questions the intelligence of
the viewers.. How much
ever you try to escape from the blame it is very clear and fresh (and will be
forever) that media has blood
on its hands.... a silent witness which cannot be proven in any house of law. Yes!!
I agree that the princess
used the media a very few times.. but didn't the media used her in turn always
gaining/profiting out of the
private moments of a person.. It would have been more appreciated if the telecast
had covered what good things
the princess has done with her popularity by using the media. What did she gain by
using media??? HER DEATH..
And the closing sentence of the show saying that she played the game and lost.. was
not appropriate.. you could
have put it this way.. "We played the game with her and won the game in her
It looked to me as if the same form of reasoning among the British press
and the Paparazzi concerning Diana is that classic but illegitimate
rationalization men have used to justify rape for centuries: "She
looked like she wanted it." There is nothing wrong with wanting to
appear attractive, just as there is nothing wrong with Diana's use of
the press for the exposure of humanitarian issues. She may have been
unwise in her public actions toward the other royals, and she probably
did sell her soul by doing such, but that will never justify the
systematic gang-rape she endured at the hands of the tabloid press. I
would not expect your show to come down as strong as I have on this
matter; a fear of losing press freedoms would cause any video journalist
to shudder at the thought of trying to remove a speck from someone
else's objective lens.
While I have always enjoyed your programs for being well written and thought
provoking, The Princess and the Press is an exception.
You can now include yourself with the rest of the media in laying blame on Diana
for her tragic end.
I believe she used the media for her survival, short as it was, and to get her
idea's to the public and good for her!
I am haunted by the image of her that her last thoughts on this earth was a flash
from a camera.
Diana was a beautiful human being who might have lived her life in the spotlight
but obviously she was very much alone.
Everyone who took an interest in her is now responsible for not only her death, but
the manner in which her life came to an abrupt
end and why she must now lie forever on a small island alone. The Royal family is to
blame, they took away her title, thus taking
away her right to lie next to her children in death in the Abbey. The press is to
blame, they couldn't leave her alone because of
the price of a picture was to high for them to turn down (which goes to show that
money means more to a person than a life itself).
And not to be left out in the finger pointing, the public itself. Because of public
interest Diana could not be permitted to lie in
peace with her father and ancestors because the public would not leave her alone.
And knowing how sick some people are, they would
probably end up vandalizing the family church just to get some sort of souvenir. So
in the end the decision made by her family to
have Diana interred on the small island was the best answer to such a tragic
situation. However, we all need to take responsibility
for Diana having to lie forever isolated from her family especially from her boys.
How proud we must feel.
After the initial rush of sadness and pity that your program evoked, "The Princess
and the Press" continues to make me ponder the role of the media. The predominance
of male opinion that we heard from the press underscores the fact that any man with
a long lens was given free rein to harass this beautiful young woman. The scene in
the airport was so disturbing because it showed the mindless intensity of the
desire of these men to touch, control and own Diana. They had no right. The
ill-bred journalism of Rupert Murdoch is of the lowest class Australian and British
type. It illustrates the desire of the ignorant to crush and destroy all that is
too fine for it to understand or appreciate.
First of all the Princess understood how to "use" the media in a way that would
benefit, not her self but those that she championed causes for. I really think
that the media needs to understand that just like any other person Princess Diana
had a private side, and wished not for it to be exploited all over the evening
news. How would any other person feel if they had cameras around or on them 24-7?
It seemed that the press didn't understand the Princesses' wish in 1993 to be left
alone. As the program said, the value of a picture of the Princess went almost
through the roof, why couldn't they just leave her alone? Did they really need
that one picture, that one picture cost her life. Now the world of 2000 and
beyond will never know the greater good that the Princess stood for, my children
will never know who she was and for that I am truly sad! I think the way in which
the media makes icons and breaks them needs to be examined, we as the public should
also examine our values (I am just as guilty as the rest of you) I leave with one last question,
next time ask yourself "Do I really need that one picture or bit of info?"
I was appalled at the tasteless and self-serving character assassination of the
late Diana, Princess of Wales that aired on PBS Tuesday, November 18th. I
found it a thinly veiled vindication of the press and championing of the
monarchy, even quoting HRH Elizabeth II's ambiguous remark that anyone who knew
Diana could never forget her, after portraying Diana in a most unflattering
light. If this program is representative of the press, it illustrates that in
spite of stalking her for 24 hours a day, the media came away without even the
most superficial insight into this woman. This is all the more glaring in view
of her unprecedented self-disclosure. I found the statement that she played a
dangerous game and lost, particularly callous, offensive and lacking in
insight. I was very surprised to
learn that PBS is also capable of the worst kind of yellow journalism.
Although I enjoyed and appreciated the effort regarding the
relationship between Princess Diana and the press, I was disturbed at some of
the editorial commentary and the slanted view in which I thought the princess
was presented. Words like "obsessive" etc. were used to describe Diana's
behavior. As a clinical psychologist, I was dismayed at the casual use of
terms implying pathology. As a woman I was appalled at the perpetration of the
thinking that women are somehow disturbed for reacting to situations around
them that are insane.
As a psychotherapist who has worked with many people on their journey to
heightened growth and maturity, I am greatly impressed by the way in which
Diana handled the abuse that was regularly heaped on her. What is truly
amazing is that she continued to grow in spite of this. I admire and respect
this in anyone, but to see this happen while all the time knowing that the
world is watching is truly amazing. I am disappointed that frontline didn't
concentrate more on Diana's strength and courage and maturity in spite of the
My, my, my.... Frontline sure went to a lot of work to defend the behavior and
actions of the media re: hounding Princess Di.
It's a terrible shame that the media couldn't draw the line between when it was
APPROPRIATE to report her actions vs. when it was PRUDENT to just leave her
alone. Wasn't Frontline's defense of the media's behavior touching? Just
because Princess Diana gave them the "green light" on some occasions, they felt
justified to run all the "red lights", thereafter. I mean, she was teasing
them, after all. What were they to do, right? Whatever!! It's especially
offensive that Frontline should insult my (our) intelligence by even
suggesting that their (the media's) actions were justified. I don't buy it!
And why are so many people getting hung-up on whether or not she was smart
enough or not smart enough to work the media? Quite frankly, it doesn't matter
if she was "as dumb as a box o' rocks" , they should've had the respect to
leave her alone when she asked them to do so. That goes for her and any body
else that has a camera
pointed at them!
There was one particular scene in Frontline's program that perfectly,
fabulously captured the true ugliness of the media - it was when Princess Diana
was ducking behind her tennis racquet, trying to make her way through a throng
of reporters, when one photographer stood RIGHT in front of her. She bumped
right into the ape.
He didn't even have the courtesy to move out the poor woman's way just to let
her walk by. Why didn't he just shove the camera down her throat and get a
picture of her tonsils while he was at it. After all, we all really, really,
REALLY wanted to see her tonsils!!!
In your piece on Lady Diana,
you do yourselves and her a great disservice.
I'd hoped that you might show some
objectivity, yet you've presented "just
another media apology". Using the excuse
that the Princess "sometimes had use for the
media", overlooks the fact that she somehow
had to learn to deal with her fate as a
stalked person. Would Diana ever have become
so jaded as to share intimate details had
every other version not already been
promulgated? We'll never know...what we do
know is that her life had been intruded on
even before an engagement had been announced.
After the engagement she became no more than
chum in a feeding frenzy of sharks.
She found herself required to play in a game
where the rules changed with each move.
You disappoint with your conclusion that
Diana was complicit in the media attack
that led to her death merely because she
tried to play the hand she had been dealt.
I think Diana did what every woman does in her situation. When the dice are
rolled and sides are drawn she had no choice but to go public. Keeping
everything secret is what got her in trouble in the first place. When I went
through my divorce I poured out my soul to whomever was willing to listen. Had
the press been one of my resources I would have told all too. She was in the
end honest to herself and the world and I have to admire that and overlook her
faults. Ultimately she paid the highest price for having that resource.
Diana, the Princess of Wales, used her celebrity to promote issues that might
otherwise never have had the coverage. AIDS, homelessness, eating disorders and
the ban on land mines would never have had the coverage that they gained when
associated with the Princess of Wales. I believe that Diana, whom I greatly
admire, is a victim of our society. We tend to see someone such as herself
place them on a pedestal. However, they are only human - everyone makes
mistakes and when the Princess of Wales made mistakes, they were blown out of
all proportions. We want and expect information about celebrities such as Diana
as well as movie actors - what they wear, how they see, what they eat, where
they vacation. Celebrities have a right to their privacy, just as we have a
right to ours!
Tracie Nancy Taylor
The media burden Princess Diana bore was by all accounts unprecedented. I'm
certain she did not realize until it was far to late the complete devastation
they were going to deliver to her life. The horror of her story for me comes
not from the particulars of her situation, but from the fact that world
morality has degenerated
to the point where this could happen. Where a human being could be so publicly
hunted and slaughtered for the monetary gains of some and the "enjoyment" of
Brush Prairie, Wa
The whole subject of Princess Diana; her life and her death, seems to be one in
which the dim line between objectivity and subjectivity has completely
disappeared. If it were possible to view this subject with complete
objectivity, the picture of Diana would certainly be less than perfect. She was
flighty and immature, obsessive, jealous, and possessive. She was impulsive,
did not consider the long term effects of her actions, and she was really, not
very smart. She was tortured with internal conflict because to the world she
was a "star", but within the royal family she was considered a "dim bulb":
Diana thought she should be as much of a star within the family as without. She
cultivated the press, both mainline and tabloid, to her own ends, but
unrealistically expected this relationship to function only on her own terms.
She then played the role of "victim" when it did not. She used her beauty and
ingratiating demeanor to gain status as a caring
humanitarian; she had a unique talent to project a facade of caring, she knew
just whom to "touch" to further this image. Objectively, she lived the bulk of
her life as an incredibly adorable, hopelessly spoiled child. Many of her
manipulative actions were nothing other than slightly disguised versions of the
kicking, screaming, breath holding tantrums a spoiled toddler might throw.
Subjectively, Diana was a beautiful young woman, married much too young into a
glamorous marriage. At 19, she was too young and naive to realize that such a
marriage had to have some element of convenience from
the perspective of Charles and the royal family. When she came to this
realization, she used what means she had at hand to cope with it. As the
marriage crumbled, she used the only means she had at hand to counter the
immense power of the Royals, and to take from the marriage the privilege to
participate significantly in the rearing of her sons. Her very public
imperfection, and her life of "the fairy tale gone wrong" have immortalized her
as "the Queen of Hearts".
I must admit that I have never seen your program before but it caught my eye
last night. Your coverage of the late Princess Diana is and will be an ongoing
obsession for the public at large. I believe it is the responsibility of the
media to cover news in an objective and
fair manor. For us who look to you to educate and enlighten us to the news,
locally, nationally and around the world.
I have always enjoyed the coverage of Princess Diana. I feel she did such great
work for mankind. I do however feel that in many ways our fascination with
royalty or celebrities in general, could be taken
to an extreme. Everyone needs privacy. Even in my job as a teacher and a
minister, there are times when I need to get away and relax. Sometimes that is
almost impossible. We must remember, Princess Diana lived a life that many of
us if we are honest would have loved to trade a day with her.
But alas, reality hits and we realize that all of us have a job to do on earth.
Is there a balance to the issue of supply and demand, the need to be informed
and entertained? I hope so. Lastly, let me say I hope that Princess Diana's
brothers eulogy was not done in vain. I hope that Charles and Diana's son will
be left alone unless they willingly give interviews. The really need their
Does anyone have an update on how they are doing? I would like to know. Do they
still get letters of encouragement? Where would I be able to send them a note
of encouragement? Let us all pray for them. A loss of anyone is a traumatic
thing. May God comfort them through out their lives. Thanks again PBS for
your wonderful coverage of Princess Diana and her family!
Rev. Darrell J. Cope
It has always seemed disingenuous to me that the media has not been
sophisticated enough to separate what is newsworthy and what is private
The Princess, toward the end of her life, seemed to be saying, in effect, "If
you're going to use me, at least let it be for things that are more worthwhile
than telephoto shots of a 5-months-pregnant, 20-year-old girl on a private
I know what it's like to walk into the local Wal-Mart on a Saturday at
midnight, not expecting to run into anyone I know and therefore not dressed for
the occasion of being spotted by children I teach (and their parents). It's not
a time I intend to meet my " public", and, even at fifty-one, it makes me a bit
uneasy. I cannot even imagine how
this lovely young woman managed the last fourteen years of her life, raised her
boys, did so much and such various good, and kept any semblance of personal
I hold her up as a role model to my daughter and my students, not because she
was beautiful and rich and a celebrity, but because of what she did with her
life and even more, because of how she continued to grow in spite of
everything, into someone who made lemonade - with some very sour lemons
I don't care if the Princess used the media to further her causes. In my
opinion, every single photographer who took pictures of the princess during
obviously private moments has blood on his hands.
New York, NY
I believe that Princess Diana used the press very wisely. What they forget is
that she did give them the interviews that they craved so much, however, they
abused her privacy. Yes, she was a public figure, but she was a person with
feelings, wants, needs just like everyone else. She was entitled to some
privacy just like the press is. How would they like to be followed
everywhere? Plus, they seemed to feel it was their right to intrude into her
life, I don't believe that it was their right. Diana did so much good for
"people" that's what I want to read about. I don't want to read about her
vacations, and private moments, they should be hers and her family's. Now the
children are suffering, they no longer have a mother. She adored her children
and that has been taken away from all of them.
Appalling is your defense of the media by implying that Diana was "asking for
it" because she was a beautiful woman flirting with the press. Now that her
media rape, media murder and media burial are past, I am disappointed that
Frontline served up the same old tabloid story without any new insight.
Your program tonight dealing with Princess Diana and the press
attempted to note the differences between the interests of the press
and those of Diana. Surely Diana used the press, as anyone of
statute would in order to promote the causes for which she worked,
and possibly her own private interests as well. But I did not hear
any mention that the press, as an industry, also used Diana, their
sole motive being profit. Ultimately, however, it must be recognized
that the readership, in their insatiable hunger for the kind of tripe
published in large part by the tabloids, is responsible for forcing
Diana into the evasive lifestyle that eventually led to her death.
Your program concluded by implying that Diana had played the game an lost. It
is not so much that she lost, but that the press won, and in
that victory, we all lost.
Salvador del Castillo
I was disappointed & angered by the media's portrayal of the Princess &
the Press. Yes Diana was a public figure who interacted with the media to
promote her causes. Yet her involvement was not self-serving nor warranted
the loss of privacy & the harassment she experienced. Your program as well
as the headlines you selected for
your web site were a further exploitation of the Princess. Shame on the media
for trying to deny their part in her tragic death.
E. Hanover, NJ
Did Diana go too far for the only famous interview in 1995?
Maybe not, because she may wanted to clarify the rumors or more like to put the
brake on the rumors about her or whoever around her.
About her and other confidants? Some confidants knew her long before Diana
started to see Charles. James Whitaker was one of those. Yes, it became
love/hate relationship. From what I studied the history of Diana and the
media, Diana seemed that she fought for her right of privacy for so long time.
Did the media heard her cries. Nope, they did not. I think the media is
developed a new problem (may be very old one, anyway) which does not know how
to separate the public and private roles. They should be focus on the public
roles MORE than the private roles.
Other problem is that British government does not allow the Royal Family, which
included Diana, to go into "political area". It is kind of taboo for them to
play some political roles. They may cried the same way Diana had done. My
mother thinks Diana did some favors for the Royal Family especially the Queen.
Diana, since her divorce, done many good things that Queen may wanted to do
Platte City, MO
I don't think it is fair to blame the Princess for not knowing how to handle
the media when she was nineteen years old. Of course, there were times when
she welcomed the publicity and other times when she wanted to be left alone.
Isn't it that way with everybody? Didn't she deserve a private life? I just
hate it that she was run after by the paparazzi on the last day of her life, a
day that should have been full of joy. Does no one realize they took
photographs of her as she lay dying in that car? Can anyone justify that kind
of media obsession? Come on, people. There is a time and a place for
photographs and a time and a place for privacy. I'd rather have fewer pictures
and a live Princess.
Diana was not astute enough to deal with such a large, and far reaching press,
she did not utilize the resources of a press agent that could measure the
weight of the messages she wanted to get across. She didn't have the
sophistication to make good judgment in handling a determined, experienced
press corps. She would have had a certain amount of insulation from a "pack" if
she had not declined the protection of the security detail given to all Royals.
Emotions ruled her behavior and over-ran what good sense a professional public
relations person might have brought to her cause. It was a mistake to seek
help from a press that sees their
job as selling newspapers, an absolute conflict of interest. She abdicated her
self respect by dragging on an argument she couldn't win without objective
counsel from someone who knew how to manage the power of the press to her
advantage. Friends and colleagues may have meant well, but in reality,
served their own self interest first..
The Princess lost track of her role in British history by forgetting that she
was Queen in waiting, not Queen. The Prince of Wales will be king and William
will be king in his maturity. It would certainly be very wrong for a young man
to shoulder the weight of the throne, probably becoming the puppet of greedy,
unethical politicians. And William will assume the throne as Windsor. Prince
make certain that his son will have the advantage of the education and
knowledge to reign. The House of Windsor is not without compassion and feeling
for all human beings - Diana didn't invent them.
In the end, the press - the avenue to public influence she so desperately
sought became the engine of her own self destruction. That public influence
became her goal, but she lost sight of her own message. And that, in the final
analysis, cost her everything.
Diana sought to manipulate and to use the press. It was the press that used
and manipulated her
Sammy R. Stull
People in the public eye in this country make extensive use of security police
forces and personal body guards. Having seen hours of Princess Diana video of
both her personal and private lives broadcast since her death, there is no
consistent presence of personal protection surrounding her.
I do not think that it would be too far reaching to suggest that if the British
Monarchy took the extra steps or measures to ensure the privacy of their own
kind, that, perhaps, the paparazzi or general press would not have had such a
detrimental impact on our beloved Queen of Hearts, or any other important
personage in the Royalty.
Even in the early stages of the marriage the Queen herself made official
comments to the effect that the outlandish full-time news-reporter coverage of
Diana was certainly too much for such a young woman to bear.
I wonder why, then, did the Royalty not take the obvious measure of ordering
personal security to protect the personage of their own in-house world-wide
superstar, since formal requests had been ignored.
As to the justification of Diana using the press to her own ends when and where
she wanted... that is exactly the business of the press and her own decision.
All other "commoner" people (not in the non-public eye) engage the press in a
manner know as Public Affairs. You find some sort of Public Affairs office in
just about every commercial institution, public organization or government.
Her actions in that respect cannot be seen in any other light than pure
realism, and in going with the times of the present day and age. Princess
Diana did so very much for so many across social an cultural barriers, why not
just remember her in nothing less than
that positive image.
I think Diana still was naive about what the press was really capable of. She
was smart to use them to publicize her humanitarian efforts and her charity
work, yet she did not seem to realize that she was playing with fire. I think
she often thought it was a game, like cat-and-mouse, but it was also a hassle
and eventually became dangerous. I think she did not see the danger coming. I
also think others could possibly have been at fault for not making her
understand what she was dealing with. I don't think Diana understood the
difference between the tabloid press and the paparazzi press.
I think the tabloids have some standards, thought they're pretty low. I do
think the tabloids failed miserably in their responsibility to inform the
freelance reporters and photographers that there were lines which could not be
crossed. I also think that in trying to be in touch with the "common people",
that Diana left herself too vulnerable to harassment and attack. I do not
think that some of the former constraints of the monarchy were fair either, and
I do applaud Diana for trying to "dust off the cobwebs", as has been said often
enough of her. But I think she allowed them too much room in the beginning.
Just like the old saying, "Give a man an inch, and he'll take a mile". Well,
the British paparazzi took a lot more than just " a mile". They were on a
roller coaster, out of control; every new development sent them spinning to new
heights (and depths) of intrusion. I dare say they would have filmed her on
the toilet if they'd had half-a-chance!! I think just about everyone is to
blame, from the consuming public who bought the rags in the first place, to the
press who would stop at nothing, to even Diana herself. She did not mean for
things to get so out-of-hand of course. She probably thought she was in
control most of the time. Maybe she was at times, as in the BBC interview, but
I think this was seldom the case. The Hounds of Hell were at her back, and she
was still trying to run with high heels on. No wonder she fell...to her death.
So very, very Sad!
Valerie A. Moore
I was interested to watch your program on Diana, Princess of Wales and the
media. It was harrowing to see the footage of all the photographers following
her around, the photographers themselves admitting that where there were once 7
photographers covering royal events now there would be 70. At the time people
would wonder publicly how Diana was going to handle it, saying that Charles
was "used to the attention." Now we wonder if the degree of attention was
It seems fascinating that perhaps the press coverage pressured Prince Charles
into proposing marriage. It adds to the notion of the media as some sort of
conspirator in their relationship from the beginning. These two people were
never really free from the pressure of the press. I also think that all of
this is separate from the attention of the public. The public was not
clamoring to see her face in every paper every single day. Papers that ran
conventional news didn't report a loss of circulation. I think the newspapers
created a sensation by marketing, and pandering to the interest
that did exist.
I've never had any patience for the idea that if the Princess cooperated with
the media on one occasion she then lost her right to privacy at all other
moments. Is it impossible for an individual to exert control over their
public image? Why does the press bridle so much at the attempt? I found the
Frontline program fairly responsible dealing with these issues, but when
tabloid journalists use this to defend themselves for stalking and provoking
their subjects it brings to mind a vengeful rapist saying "the bitch wanted
Watching scores of journalists traipsing through the snow in Klosters,
realizing that there may not be any unfamiliar public images of the Princess
left, it seems clear that there are enormous negative consequences to this sort
of situation. The editors were waiting for her to "crack." That was always
the "next big story." They were ready when it happened. There truly is a
dynamic relationship between the famous and the media. In retrospect it does
seem astounding that something tragic didn't happen sooner.
I feel enormous compassion for the British royal family, and for the Princess
in particular, having to deal with the mushrooming of media that has occurred
Your show on Tuesday evening regarding Princess Diana was
interesting. It was nice to see some of the inside
commentary given from the press' point of view. However it
is still amazing to me how the press is still looking for
vindication, trying to justify literally hounding a person
Comments like "she knew the press was there, but did nothing
about it" and "when she wanted to be seen, she made sure she
was seen" cannot and will never justify the hounding and
total disregard for her privacy. Obviously, the press
really hates it when someone takes the least advantage of
the situation they have been forced into, through no doing
of their own. Couldn't there be at least a modicum of
decency on behalf of the press, or does capitalism at it's
worst require all of them to be like vultures and sharks,
physically and mentally?
True, she would not have been so well known if it hadn't
been for the press at all, but she would honestly have fared
equally as well with about 1% of the smotherage she was
literally plagued with. That's because she was the person
she was: a true princess, and the press should not give
itself credit when their own true and only motivation was to
make a buck. Follow the monetary gains made, and one can
truly identify who profited and who didn't; but in this
case, who profited, and who died.
These are just some of the thoughts your program evoked in
this viewer. Sorry if they turned out to be a little
acrid. Judging from the presentation of the program, this
probably was not the response it was meant to evoke.
It's something I've thought about a lot, as a journalist, and in the end I
believe as follows: Diana should have been respected in her right to say
"enough!" It was HER life...she should have had the final say of when it's
okay to have her picture taken, and when it feels intrusive. If she felt, at a
given moment, that she wanted to talk to the press about her private life, then
that was her choice. If, at a later date, she didn't want to discuss her
private life, then that should have
been her choice too! Please bear with me as I have an analogy that I believe
it illustrates my point well: It's like a woman who has been raped by a
boyfriend and someone asks, "Well weren't you wearing provocative clothing?
Hadn't you had sex with him before? etc." Hidden question being, didn't you
somehow bring this on yourself? But none of that matters. If she said no that
one time, EVEN if she had said yes before, and he forced her completely against
her will, then it is rape.
Maybe Diana invited the press into her private life at different times. But
that didn't give them the right to have access to her private life at ALL
times, against her will. Even if Diana used the press, they were willing to
be used. They could have said NO! We don't want to come to your photo shoot!
We don't want to interview you! Clearly, the press was willing to be used.
However, when they used her, she was not willing. Unfortunately, that didn't
matter, she was not given the option of saying no. They needed to leave her
alone when she asked for this. This was her right as a human being. So no, I
don't believe Diana went too far. I believe the press went too far.
St. Louis, MO
I personally do not feel that Princess Diana
went too far with the press. I feel the press
went too with her. If she gave the press information
concerning herself, it was to protect and defend
herself her from rumors and the royal family. The
press, regardless of who they are covering,
should know when to quit. Even though she was
a public figure, she was still entitled to privacy.
Under no circumstance does the press have the right
to intrude on that. Just when she FINALLY found
happiness they took it away from her. I fully
agreed with EVERY word the Earl Spencer spoke of
at the funeral. Just knowing that she was finally
happy at the time of her death is a comfort, but
it is a shame the price she had to pay to get it.
I am still dismayed at the attempt of the press to exonerate itself in its
oppression of Diana. One could compare the presence of the photographers to
gnats attacking one constantly. We could expect them to cover her at public
functions but I truly believe that one does not have to be a saint or genius to
realize that even the most public of people deserve some measure of privacy.
If Diana threw
them bones from time to time it very well could have been with the idea that
giving them something might hold them off. She may well have used the press to
suit her purposes but it was a "privilege" she earned from all of the
harassment. These people in the media should be able to see that. Her use of
media confuses nothing.
There was NO rational or excusable reason to torment their "golden goose" to
the point of killing her. To chase after her car like a swarm of bees was most
irresponsible. If courts do not hold them legally responsible a great many of
us shall hold them truly morally responsible. There is no mitigation on the
parts of any news people for their behavior. They saw her as a very tasty meal
ticket and never as a human being deserving of any privacy.
Glen Ellyn, IL
I'm not one often given to watching reports of ó nor one often moved by
the tragedies of the rich and well-known. However, seeing a review of the late
Princess Diana's so-called storybook life on tonight's program (11/18/97), I
found myself greatly saddened and shaking my head once aware of it again.
I understand that the matter of the public's curiosity can't be ignored
and call it normal as well. Nonetheless, the satisfiers of the like should by
law be required to keep a respectful distance and maintain a respectful
demeanor in the carrying out of their livelihoods.
Your program nearly finished, I was quite put off by almost the last of its
narration stating, "She played a dangerous game and she lost." It took me
quite by surprise because I was watching . . . "Frontline". I feel that this
was a most presumptuous and stiltedly judgmental end to a news program that I
usually hold in high esteem.
Not meaning to be vulgar but unable to draw a better comparison just this
moment, I ask, if someone likes sex does that mean he or she deserves rape?
Assuming both the sender and receiver of this message agree, "Of course not,"
I'll also ask, if you like to have your picture in the papers once in a while
don't you have the right to,
metaphorically speaking, say, "Uh-uh, not tonight. I've got a
headache," and have that wish respected even if not understood?
As with so many representatives of the press shown on your program, was it
Frontline's intention to say, "She asked for it," too? Beyond the senseless
death of another human being I'm equally as sorrowed in feeling that for the
sake of a cutesy touch you've caused yourselves to appear of no higher level
than the jackals with cameras that helped end that life.
Venson Eugene Thomas
Long Island City, NY