ITV announced Piers had departed GMB on Tuesday after he cast doubt on Meghan’s revelation that she had experienced suicidal thoughts after joining the Royal Family.
Reflecting on an “extraordinary week for me, for Britain, for our monarchy and for our future”, Piers wrote in a lengthy Instagram post: “Those of you that know me well enough know that, despite my many faults, I’m always willing to stand my ground for the things that I think matter most.
“My fervent opposition to the Iraq War led to my demise from the Daily Mirror. My outspoken views on the insanity of American gun laws led to the end of my time at CNN. And now I’ve lost my job at Good Morning Britain because I chose not to apologise for disbelieving Meghan Markle’s claims in her interview with Oprah Winfrey.”
Piers continued: “I thus became the latest ‘victim’ of the cancel culture that is permeating our country, every minute, of every hour, of everyday. Though of course, I consider myself to be neither a victim, nor actually cancelled.”
Piers was sacked as editor of the Daily Mirror in 2004. The newspaper said it would have been “inappropriate” for him to continue after it conceded photos it had published of British soldiers abusing an Iraqi prisoner were fake, having fallen for a “calculated and malicious hoax”.
In his Instagram post, Piers continued: “However, I do believe the defence of free speech and the right to express honestly held opinions, is the most important issue of my career, and the most important issue in British society.”
Piers added: “As I said when I left GMB, the right to free speech is a hill worth dying on. So, have a read, and if you like it, give it to one of your friends.
“This is not simply an act of defiance, but a commitment to our collective futures.”
Piers had previously insisted his exit from GMB was “amicable” and that he and ITV bosses “agreed to disagree”.
The presenter sparked over 41,000 complaints to TV watchdog Ofcom when he said live on GMB that he “didn’t believe a word” Meghan said during her recent US TV interview, which saw her reveal there was a time where she “didn’t want to be alive anymore”.
It was confirmed on Friday that Meghan also issued a formal complaint to the broadcasting regulator, following reports she had also contacted ITV over the matter, concerned about the affect his words would have on others who are struggling with their mental health.
Piers was also criticised by mental health charity Mind, who work with ITV on its Britain Get Talking initiative.
Useful websites and helplines
Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393.
Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 (UK and ROI - this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill).