The Duchess of Sussex (!!!) made feminist waves this weekend by walking herself down the aisle at a royal wedding, a feat that should not be particularly newsworthy in 2018, but in Royal Family years it’s still approximately 1903, so. Decades before #AisleGate, though, tween Meghan Markle fought a slightly smaller, yet infinitely gutsier (IMO) crusade against sexist commercials for household cleaning products.
Indeed, in 1993, 11-year-old Markle launched a letter-writing campaign to get Procter & Gamble to change the wording in an Ivory dishwashing soap commercial that claimed “women all over America are fighting greasy pots and pans.” That battle netted her a spot on Nick News, Nickelodeon’s Linda Ellerbee-hosted news program for children. Inside Edition dug up the video back in November, but Nickelodeon’s nostalgia vertical, NickSplat, posted it to Facebook on Saturday in honor of the royal wedding, and it is WONDERFUL. Baby Meghan, you are a star.
It doesn’t surprise me in the least that a tween confident enough to star in a news segment grew up to take on the royal family, and Ellerbee, an award-winning journalist in her own right, told Inside Edition that she knew right away that Markle had the spark. “It was absolutely clear that this young woman was strong in her beliefs,” she said. “It didn’t matter that she was 11 years old. She believed in women and she believed in her own power and wasn’t afraid to reach out and say, ‘I want my power. I want my rights.’”
Note that the Ivory soap incident is addressed early on in the Lifetime film, Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance, which, honestly, was very nearly good.