Letters to Editor: Love him or hate him, Piers Morgan will be back

Updated: Mar 12

It has been a rather eventful week at home and abroad, and it all began with an interview in the sunny and affluent neighbourhood of Santa Barbara, USA, but that is not why I am writing this .

Once again, Piers Morgan has found himself at the centre of another controversy - the "Meghan Markle controversy".

We all know where his feelings lie when it comes to Harry and Meghan, but their interview with Oprah quite literally tipped him over the edge.

I have followed Piers for years and the truth is, he is like marmite, either love or you hate him. Whatever the case, you cannot deny his presence on screen.

If you're like me and love a dose of Good Morning Britain (GMB) before you start your day, you will remember that Piers was an outspoken, often challenging, domineering and disruptive broadcaster, whom we agreed with on many occasions, and with whom we disagreed with on others, but he gave all of us something to think about on occasion. I will especially miss how he used to hold politicians like Matt Hancock to account.

Now, we could sit here all day arguing and analysing how he treated Meghan and Harry, but are we criticising him because of Meghan and Harry's status as a biracial couple, his comments about her mental health or because we generally found him obnoxious?

The truth is, and I am sure many will agree, there is a culture war going on at the moment, and in any war, there are casualties. In this case, Piers Morgan became ITV's latest causality for having an opinion not popular with the masses.

For arguments sake, we could say that his stance on Meghan and Harry was harsh and insensitive, but was it really - was he that far off or was he really biased?

Facing criticism from co-presenter Alex Beresford, a visibly enraged Morgan, stormed off the set of GMB, only managing an, “I’m done with this” as he got up and headed out. “See you later, sorry I can’t do this”.

A day earlier, he had attracted widespread criticism – and over 40,000 viewer complaints – after saying he didn’t believe Meghan’s disclosure that she had considered taking her own life. “I don’t believe a word she says. I wouldn’t believe her if she read me a weather report,” he said.

At a time of such heightened tensions, both about race and mental health, something had to give but that doesn't mean that the points Piers raised were wrong, all it means is that they were not 'acceptable' in some circles.

On Tuesday, Carolyn McCall made it very clear that she believed Meghan Markle's central claim about her mental health. She went further: ITV takes mental health very seriously, as I am sure many of us do. The points she raised about race and mental health are very serious allegations and we cannot downplay those.

Nonetheless, the statement by Carolyn McCall obviously meant that ITV expected Piers to recant publicly, or apologise but he said that he had a good chat with the broadcaster and "agreed to disagree", and that was the end of that chapter for him.

He will be back

Many people are happy that he has left, but there are others that are sad and disappointed that it has come to this and there is no doubt there will be petitions for him to return - a slight difference for him, as often there are petitions either for him to get deported or fired.

If we look back at his history, almost seventeen years ago, he was fired as editor of the Daily Mirror after publishing faked Iraqi prisoner abuse photographs. A decade later, he was axed by CNN after he lost his US audience over a series of lectures over gun control. Depending on which side of the argument you were on, he did stir the pot and he did ask the questions that many people in powerful positions or in positions of leadership have failed to ask in the US. While that story didn't end well, Piers has always found a way of bouncing back.

Editorially, his time at Good Morning Britain saw significant ratings growth. There is no doubt in my mind that this will continue elsewhere, as he is probably always in talks with other broadcasters.

Ex-BBC presenter Andrew Neil, who is now chairman of impending new channel GB News, has said that he wants to talk to Morgan about potentially signing him up.

“I think Piers Morgan would be a great asset to GB News and we’ll certainly talk to him about it,” Neil said.

“I think he needs a little period of quiet reflection before anything happens. And I wouldn’t simply transfer what he did at GMB straight to GB News, I think we’d probably want to do something a bit different.”

We are all curious about his next move. If it is GB News, it will be interesting to see what impact he will have and in what way. However, the question is whether GB News needs Piers more than Piers needs GB News. Only time will tell.

Anna T