News & Opinion
Gay-Friendly Harry, A Prince Among Men
Royal heir stepped up to stop homophobia in his battalion.
June 10 2013 12:10 PM EST
February 05 2015 9:27 PM EST
If you didn't have a crush on Britain's Prince Harry before, you will now that we know the royal and British Army Captain has a zero tolerance for homophobia in his ranks.
According to Lance Corporal James Wharton, who served as one of battalion leader Harry's gunners in Afghanistan and who is the author of the new memoir, Out In The Army: My Life as a Gay Soldier, Harry took it upon himself to take down anti-gay soldiers who were tormenting, taunting, and threatening Wharton. This excerpt from Wharton's book, published at the Daily Mail, offers the details on what happened when Wharton's fellow soldiers found out he was gay in 2008 and how Harry took them down a notch:
"This was turning into a bit of a situation. Danny told them everything he'd seen and to back off. Under huge pressure I went back to my vehicle to find Prince Harry.
'Sir, I need to talk to you.'
'Why? What's up? Are you OK?'
Harry instantly looked concerned. I told him: 'I think I'm about to be murdered by the infantry.'
I climbed into the turret and talked Harry through exactly what had happened. He had a complete look of bewilderment on his face.
I didn't hold back: I told him everything that had gone on. I couldn't stop the tears from welling up in my eyes.
He said: 'Right. I'm going to sort this s*** out once and for all.'
Harry climbed out of the tank and started having a go. I worried he was about to make the whole thing worse, but he wasn't holding back. Prince Harry was sticking up for me and putting a stop to the trouble. I had been on track for a battering and had been rescued.
He came back ten minutes later and told me the problem had been 'sorted'.
He told me: 'I knew one of his officers and we cleared everything up. I also told those other lads to back the f*** off, too.'"
If the name James Wharton is familiar to you, it's because Wharton was the first openly gay serviceman to appear on the magazine Soldier and subsequently went on to star in his own It Gets Better video, included below. His book will be released June 18th.