Photo editing has become normalized with the growing popularity of social media, so why did Kate Middleton face such extreme backlash?
Photo editing has become normalized with the growing popularity of social media, so why did Kate Middleton face such extreme backlash?
(Photo Credit: Brooke Fechtel/Canva/Achona Online

Kate Middleton cancer diagnosis amid photo-editing controversy

Kate Middleton, Princess of Wales, has fallen under scrutiny for editing a photo depicting herself along with her three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis. Kate released the picture, taken by Prince William, on Mother’s Day, and it did not take long for news agencies to claim that the photo was edited.

In the picture, discrepancies can be identified with a misalignment of Princess Charlotte’s sweater, making it appear as if her wrist was not attached properly to her hand. Blurring around Charlotte’s legs is also apparent in contrast to the clarity of Kate’s hands. Blurring around both Kate’s and Charlotte’s hair suggests that fly-aways were trying to be cleaned up in order to perfect their hair. These are just some of the edits that have been found within the image.

The editing of the photo raised concerns for Kate’s health. In January Kate disclosed she had a “planned” abdominal surgery, even though the news shocked the public. The surgery clarified that Kate did not have a malignant cancer which was relieving news. However, a recent diagnosis proved otherwise. On March 22nd, Kate publicly announced that she has cancer and is currently undergoing chemotherapy as treatment and is temporarily taking leave from her royal duties.

Kate has become the third member of the royal family including King Charles and Sarah, Duchess of York, to receive a cancer diagnosis this year. It is apparent that the royal family is extremely vulnerable at the moment. Now that two members of the royal family are fighting cancer, two of the most prominent figures in English politics are absent from the public view. King Charles has kept up with his royal duties but has minimized public appearances. Kate has promised to return to her normal duties as soon as she is cleared to but is expected to follow in step with Charles with minimizing public interactions.

The edited photo sparked controversy across all boards and created the universal question, “What was Kate trying to hide?”. The real question to address would be “Why did the public sensationalize Kate’s simple editing?” It can be argued that Princess Kate was just trying to live up to societal expectations and create a “picture-perfect” family photo. The pressure to always appear perfect as royalty most likely influenced Kate to modify her image before releasing it to the public eye.

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