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Disclaimer: I’ve chosen to write about the island of Ireland, as supposed to Northern or the Republic of Ireland because whether we care to admit it or not, there are cultural norms and inherited traumas that have been passed down to the people of Ireland — all of Ireland — through generations. And the crucial thing to remember about trauma is that it’s colourblind, it doesn’t know green from orange and it certainly doesn’t care what religious denomination or political persuasion you are. I’m Irish and Northern Irish, British and born in Ulster, all at once. …

In July 2020 I wrote two articles about Jeffrey (Jeff) Anderson, his grotesque sexual crimes and the role his father, the powerful Northern Irish PR ‘guru’ Colin Anderson, played in protecting his son from public scrutiny following pitiful sentencing for his convictions. Convictions that originally included rape and child sex offences, which were later dropped without explanation, voyeurism, occasioning actual bodily harm, sexual assault and many more unimaginable abuses of liberty that Jeff Anderson carried out against a large number of young women.

Jeff was given a three year suspended sentence and his victims, who, after hearing that their abuser…

Let me make one thing clear, there’s not a menstrual cycle goes by in which I don’t watch at least one of my favourite rom-com coming of age ‘girl finds herself/her career/Matthew McConaughey in the big city’ films. Crumpled around a hot water bottle in a ball on the sofa, with a family sharing bar of Galaxy within reach at all times, I spend the worst day of my cramps indulging in the joy of mid-00’s optimism. Brought to life by Natasha Bedingfield soundtracks, Anne Hathaway in those Channel boots and Kate Hudson being, Kate Hudson. …

There were two types of kids in my school, ones who attended Medallion parties and ones who didn’t (disclosure: I didn’t). Medallion parties were hosted after every match during the season by a member of the Medallion rugby team.

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Regent House Grammar School (Image from Google Maps)

The Medallion rugby team was made up of the best rugby players in the year, all boys aged between 14 and 15. The parties were hosted at the home of one of the players and in attendance were the most popular, outgoing and beautiful people from that school year. …

The story of Jeffrey Epstein, an international business mogul and sexual predator, who carried out horrific and violent sexual crimes against young women, his ability to escape the law by hiding behind his fortune — which offered him protection through hiring the best, most corrupt lawyers available — and his eventual suicide prior to facing sentencing may appear at first an abstract, distant, improbable tale. The grim truths of his power and privilege are the makings of Netflix documentaries involving private islands, celebrities and international court cases.

You may then be alarmed to discover that Northern Ireland has it’s very…

Gemma McSherry

Writer, feminist, big tall hippy Irish person. I write about gender, rights, culture and society. LLM Human Rights Law - University of York

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