Belfast Telegraph

'How did I come to feel more European than British? I had never considered the question before, because circumstances never presented me with a choice.' (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

Malachi O'Doherty: The interwoven cultural strands tying Britain to Ireland cannot, and will not, be undone by Brexit 

How did I come to feel more European than British? I had never considered the question before, because circumstances never presented me with a choice. That I am British to some degree is unquestionable. I said this to a discussion group on the Shankill Road last week. One of the group asked me if this was something I would be happy to declare in front of other people of my own background.

I am currently in India where they do things differently, and this Thursday, the fourth day after the first full moon after the autumn equinox, is Husband Worship Day

Malachi O'Doherty: India could learn from Northern Ireland that the path to progress is not defined by religious belief 

I have had a most unusual invitation. A friend has asked me if I would like to see him being worshipped by his wife. By worshipped he does not mean being loved and adored in the normal way of a besotted young person enrapt by the charms of a lover. He means that she will go down on her knees and prostrate herself before him. Light a votive candle and raise it to him in the manner of an abject devotee offering a sacrifice to God. And she is not the only one.

Someone might be medically diagnosed with gender dysphoria and still retain the physical characteristics generally thought to apply mostly to people of the gender that person was originally mistaken to be. (nito100/Getty/PA)

Malachi O'Doherty: Whether it is in gender identity or politics, there is no point telling someone they're not who they are 

I was taking part in a panel discussion in east Belfast last week with two other men. A woman in the audience complained that there were no women on the panel. I was a little bemused by this, because, though I am absolutely opposed to gender discrimination (some of my best friends are women, actually), I don't think a small group of three is a sample large enough to imply that any discrimination was involved. You could easily get a three-to-none ratio by tossing a coin, so no conscious bias was inferable.

Ian Paisley

Malachi O'Doherty: Like McGuinness, Paisley settled for terms far short of what he had once incited others to go out and kill for 

The evidence against Rev Ian Paisley in tonight's Secret History of the Troubles on BBC One Northern Ireland is a bit weaker than that against Martin McGuinness, but I wonder how much it changes our perceptions of the man anyway. Ian Paisley was such a towering figure in the political culture we came to call loyalism that, in those days, it was called Paisleyism and a follower of Paisley was a Paisleyite.


From Belfast Telegraph