The Rev. Franklin Graham, conservative evangelical leader and head of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has responded to Prince Harry’s recent comments dismissing the First Amendment — freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of religion — as “bonkers.”
In a Facebook post on Monday, Graham defended the U.S. Constitution and recommended that the British royal learn more about it before making additional comments.
“My ancestors were among those who came to this country to gain these freedoms. I am so thankful that I have the freedom to worship without government interference, and I thank God that the founders of our Constitution gave us this protection,” wrote Graham.
“Maybe Prince Harry could take some time while he is in this country to study our history, and I think he will come to appreciate that the First Amendment is part of what makes America great and one of the main reasons people have left everything to come here throughout history.”
In an interview with actor Dax Shepherd on the podcast "Armchair Expert," Harry said he considered the First Amendment of the Constitution to be “bonkers.”
“I’ve got so much I want to say about the First Amendment as I sort of understand it, but it is bonkers,” said the Duke of Sussex. "I don’t want to start going down the First Amendment route because that’s a huge subject and one which I don’t understand because I’ve only been here a short time, but you can find a loophole in anything,” The Spectator reported.
Harry moved to California with his American wife, actress Meghan Markle, last year due to a reported falling out with members of the British royal family.
“Nice that he can say that,” quipped U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, in response on Twitter, getting as of Wednesday morning more than 14,000 likes and over 1,300 retweets.
Nigel Farage, the former leader of the U.K. Independence Party who successfully championed Brexit, was among the non-Americans who criticized the Duke of Sussex over his remarks.
“For Prince Harry to condemn the USA’s First Amendment shows he has lost the plot. Soon he will not be wanted on either side of the pond,” stated Farage.