17/12/2012 Newsnight


17/12/2012

Analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Jeremy Paxman, including gay marriage, the row over the flag in Belfast, the onesie, and why do Americans love guns?


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Distrust, dissent and disquiet in the Conservative Party, as its

:00:13.:00:17.

leader pushes the boat out for gay marriage. This say increasingly

:00:17.:00:20.

vocal numbers of members, is not the Tory Party we joined.

:00:21.:00:25.

He may see it as a civil rights issue, by David Cameron never

:00:25.:00:28.

promised this to the British people, and plenty of his party are fed up

:00:28.:00:38.
:00:38.:00:39.

with him for it. This is probably the most decisive issue I have seen,

:00:39.:00:44.

even compared with Europe and the economy. Where does the heart of

:00:44.:00:47.

modern Conservatism lie when it comes to issues like this?

:00:47.:00:51.

We have to go back to the early days of the United States to grasp

:00:51.:00:56.

the gun issue, but is a 200-year- old piece of legislation, any basis

:00:56.:01:06.
:01:06.:01:08.

for security in the 21st century. We ask the author. Lionel Schriver.

:01:08.:01:10.

Loyalists protest on the streets of Northern Ireland about their flag.

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The Republicans are playing this game, the game is a different type

:01:14.:01:18.

of war, it is totally different. But it is a war. A war of removing

:01:18.:01:22.

everything that we hold dear so they can gain plaudits in their

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community for doing that. How on earth did the land of fine

:01:29.:01:35.

tailoring of this, who is to blame for the must-have Christmas item,

:01:35.:01:44.

the oneies. A growing split is growing in the coalition, not

:01:44.:01:49.

between the Tories and the Liberal Democrats, a split within the

:01:49.:01:52.

Conservative Party. An increasingly vocal section of the party is

:01:53.:01:57.

beginning to make rude noises about David Cameron. The datest friction

:01:57.:02:01.

is over the Prime Minister's enthusiasmism for gay marriage. Not

:02:01.:02:08.

only is this a deeply un- Conservative thing to do, it is an

:02:08.:02:13.

idea that people never had chance to vote on, on a practical level. A

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more liberal constituency will come at the cost of alienating the key

:02:17.:02:23.

supporters the party relies on to get elected, they claim. Party grey

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beards can't understand why David Cameron has such a bee in his

:02:26.:02:32.

bonnet about it. It was traditionally festive in

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Downing Street this evening, with Santa's reindeer making an

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appearance for a children's party. Hopefully nobody was put off by a

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chef lurking in the background. Traditional marriage isn't on the

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menu at Downing Street either. Many in David Cameron's party are

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perplexed, with that so many issues facing the country, like the

:02:52.:02:55.

economy, transport, Europe, immigration, he has chosen to lock

:02:55.:03:00.

horns with his MPs on the issue of gay marriage.

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I think it sits very awkwardly on the backbenches, people feel that

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there are greater priorities. That they very strongly feel that we

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should be focusing on jobs, the economy, growth and reform of

:03:15.:03:20.

public services. For a measure that was not in the Queen's Speech, the

:03:20.:03:23.

manifesto or the coalition agreement, where as for instance a

:03:23.:03:26.

commitment to tax breaks for marriage was, people are rather

:03:26.:03:28.

puzzled as to why this is a priority.

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Mr Jackson is one of 58 parliamentarians to sign a letter,

:03:32.:03:35.

complaining that the Government has skewed their consultation on the

:03:35.:03:39.

issue, by considering comments from people overseas, but ignoring a

:03:39.:03:49.
:03:49.:04:03.

petition from half a million people Why is David Cameron pushing ahead

:04:03.:04:06.

with his plans? Since civil partnerships gave gay people many

:04:06.:04:11.

of the same legal rights as married couples, there are doesn't seem to

:04:11.:04:15.

have been a big clamour for a change in the law.

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Perhaps the idea is trianglelation, you lose a few votes on the right

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of the party, but pick up a whole load more in the centre. If that is

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the strategy, some pollsters believe it is flawed. The polls

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suggest this is just as much of as a turn-off for Labour and Lib Dem

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voters as it is for Conservative voters. In that more people who

:04:38.:04:48.
:04:48.:04:48.

currently vote Labour or Lib Dem say that they are less likely to

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vote for the Conservative Party as a result. The conclusion is maybe

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60% of the public think it is a PR trick by David Cameron to persuade

:04:56.:04:59.

people that the Conservative Party has changed in some way.

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Transport Secretary, is one of several members of the cabinet to

:05:03.:05:08.

advocate gay marriage, but his constituency party is not happy.

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In any political party you get issues which create concern, or

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lead to resignations. This is probably the most devisive issue I

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have seen. Even compared with issues like Europe or the economy.

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It is having a dramatic, calamitous affect on activists, as I

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understand it, there were hundreds of thousands of Conservative

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activists saying they will not work for the party any longer, we don't

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believe what it is doing on gay marriage and we are going on strike.

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No Government, no party can put up with that sort of situation for

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long, without it having a very, very significant electoral impact.

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So where are these disaffected Conservative voters going? Well t

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appears there is someone answer. is a lot of evidence that gay

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marriage is directly related today the surge in UKIP support in the

:06:05.:06:10.

last week or two. For Nigel Farage, he can turn round to the public and

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say, well, unlike the Conservatives, Labour and Lib Dem, I'm offering

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you something different, and playing to those very disaffected

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Conservative voters. Indeed UKIP have become above the Lib Dems in

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five of the 12 by-elections in which they fielded candidates since

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2010, they have come second in three of those by-elections.

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think for an awful lot of Conservative supporters, frankly,

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this is the final straw. I would remind people, that since Cameron

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became leader, the number of paid- up Tory members has halved, and

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most of those exist in the traditional, rural shires,

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attitudes in gay marriage are different in the Metropilis to out

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in the sticks. This will cost up about 25% of Tory Party membership.

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David Cameron has promised his party a free vote on the issue,

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even so, some of his MPs think the policy could profoundly destablise

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the Conservatives, and with it, the Prime Minister's leadership.

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It is a pretty difficult position to be in for any Prime Minister,

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Conservative Prime Minister, to force through a policy, not in the

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manifesto, or a coalition agreement, with the help of Labour votes, in

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the House of Commons. That is a pretty parlour state for any leader

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to be in, I would urge David Cameron to think carefully if he

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wants to be in that position by late spring, as we come up to

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County Council elections. It will undermine his position as leader,

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it will weaken the Conservative Party both in parliament and in the

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country. Mercifully tonight, Santa left Downing Street with all his

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reindeer intact. It is clear though, that on the issue of same-sex

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marriage, David Cameron isn't taking all of his party with him.

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Let's discuss now with my guests. We have the President of Michael

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Gove's local Conservative Party in Surrey heath. With the editor of

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the Conservative Home website, and the signatory to the letter in the

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Telegraph today, opposing proposals for gay marriage.

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What is it like in your constituency, what are the

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feelings? People are saddened on this. For some reason David Cameron

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has decided to try to rush this legislation through parliament. I

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don't think the thing has been thought through to any great degree.

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Progressively the older the local Conservative members are, the more

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uncomfortable they feel about this. Because they have been brought up

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that marriage has been between a man and a woman, and that they feel

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we should, and to bring up children as well. To be presented with what

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appears to be a fait accompli. they faiing to you that is it, we

:09:02.:09:06.

are not going to -- saying that is it, we are not campaigning for you?

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It is too early to say. We had a local by-election recently, it was

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pretty hard to get people to go out and put round the leaflets and

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everything else. Why on earth is he doing it, then? Actually, a year

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after he became Conservative leader, he made it very clear that he saw

:09:25.:09:29.

marriage as being something, not just between a man and a woman, but

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potentially two men, two women. This is something David Cameron has

:09:32.:09:37.

believed in for a long time. There is, as Jeffrey said, a lot of

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unhappiness in Tory ranks, not just on this issue, but on a number of

:09:41.:09:45.

issues, this almost seems to be a last straw that has broke the

:09:45.:09:49.

camel's back for many people. But there is a history of lots of

:09:49.:09:53.

issues like civil partnerships, and Section 28, causing a lot of fuss

:09:53.:09:57.

at the time, and then as soon as the legislation is passed, it

:09:57.:10:02.

subsides. I think that's what will happen with this reform. Let's find

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out, you are one of the signatories to the letter, saying you are very

:10:05.:10:09.

unhappy about it, are you going to roll over in the end? No, I think

:10:09.:10:14.

the worst thing about this ill- thought-out proposal is it demeans

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marriage, which is sacrosanct and has a special meaning in the Church

:10:17.:10:22.

of England, especially, but also it is the law of unintended

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consequences. If we rush through this law, and down the line there

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will have to be definitions created, there will have to be, I don't want

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to go on to clause 28, marriage will have to be taught in churches,

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and in schools to schoolchildren. No longer will we be able to say

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that marriage between a man and a woman is something special. Now, I

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think we're in a very good place with civil partnerships, to that

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extent I think there has been sea change, but they are still

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relatively new. What worries me about this proposal is we didn't

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campaign on it, I didn't have the chance to say, in my extended

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election campaign in 2010, that this was either part of my

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manifesto, or when the coalition agreement was being written as I

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was still campaigning, I wasn't able to say I disagreed with it.

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There is a great strength of feeling, perhaps it is a

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Metropolitan, rural issue, perhaps it is a younger person versus an

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older person issue, it is very devisive, let's come back to it in

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three years time. You said he made it clear very early in his

:11:28.:11:32.

leadership he believed in it, why not put it in the manifesto or the

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coalition agreement? That is a good point, for most people, there is a

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Mori poll last week, 75% of the British people have no problem with

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this reform. That is not the point? As long as religious liberty is

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protected. They would be in favour of free chocolate, that isn't in

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the manifesto, that is a meaningless manifesto? How many

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people read the leader's man -- the manifesto rather than the leader's

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speech. We fight elections on manifestos, it is the legislative

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programme. For most people watching this debate, they can't understand

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why a lot of Conservatives are unhappy about it, as long as

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religious liberty is protected. are a Conservative, presumably you

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understand it. Which aspect. understand why people like

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Jeffrey's friends in Surrey Heath are so exorcited about it?

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understand people are worried about a reform being imposed upon them.

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The Government is clear unless religious liberty is protected.

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legally can't protect religious liberties, the latest announcement

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last week, trying to exclude the Church of England has made matters

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worse, it shows how ill-thought-out this proposal is. In the end, what

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is your majority, thousands? They weigh the Conservative vote?

:12:54.:12:59.

There is no such thing a as a safe seat. I totally disagree with you.

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This is highly controversial, this is overturning 5,000 years worth of

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accepted wisdom that marriage is between a man and a woman, people,

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to overturn that, in a whim and the fashion, at such short notice,

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surely a wise man would give much more consideration and debate of

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this. Do you think it may be a matter of personal conviction for

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him. It might be something he believes in very strongly? I'm sure

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he may well be. We are not a dictatorship, we are in a democracy,

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an issue like this should be debated fully, and both sides of

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the argument should be fully debated at considerable length. We

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shouldn't rush something like this. One of the most alarming things for

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people, and I have had a lot of letters from people who will say,

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whether they will remember about it, if it is passed through very

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quickly, but they say they won't vote for us again or work for us

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again. What about the people who responded to the consultation, and

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what about the 500,000-plus people who have declared that they

:13:59.:14:01.

vehemently opposed to this particular proposal. You may have

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some people who won't vote for you, presumably there will be lots of

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happily married gay people who will vote for you? I personally want to

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celebrate marriage, and celebrate civil partnership, I don't think we

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should merge the two, drg -- I think the two are totally different.

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Isn't that t you appeal to a different constituency? For me,

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marriage is an incredibly important institution, it doesn't just join

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two people together, it joins the couple's loved ones, friends and

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family together as well, I think it is right that such an important

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institution, an incredibly conservative institution, doesn't

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exclude anyone in society. And actually, by introducing equal

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marriage, we broaden and popularise an institution, and make it more

:14:46.:14:50.

central to society, not less central to society. Men and women

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are different. At as a one-time divorce lawyer, I know part of the

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reason that marriage has succeeded in the way it has is for the

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protection of women and children. If you change the ground rules,

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there are going to be some very confused people out there, in the

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church, in schools, in society at large, and I just think we have set

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a very. What will they be confused about? About what the implications

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are. It is lifetime commitment of two people? We have it in civil

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partnerships, what is the need to change at this pace. Lots of things

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have changed in marriage over decent decades, the church opposed

:15:36.:15:40.

the remarriage, Jesus spoke about remarriage being wrong, in gay he

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never spoke about gay partnerships being wrong. I don't think the Old

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Testament is a place you want to go for the purpose of this argument.

:15:48.:15:52.

think it is the New Testament actually? The Old Testament is more

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rigorous about these issues. that in your pipe and smoke it?

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I do! Supposing, that there is no resigning from this issue,

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supposing that David Cameron says I'm sorry, I really, profoundly

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believe in this, I'm the leader of this party, I will go ahead with it,

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what will happen in an area like your's? I think regretfully we will

:16:14.:16:18.

lose a certain number of members, probably to UKIP, that is where

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they will go. Their manifesto on this specific issue is very clear.

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I think it is a policy which we as Conservatives would like, we are

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totally in favour of civil partnership, but we do feel that

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going to marriage, so quickly is too quickly. We will lose

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supporters, and we will regretfully find it more difficult to get

:16:37.:16:42.

people to go out. If this goes through, I think we will have two-

:16:42.:16:45.

and-a-half years and I would like to think that David Cameron will

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get a second term. If there is a mass exodus, from marginal seats,

:16:51.:16:55.

which will determine the next Government, then was it really

:16:55.:16:59.

worth it, to introduce it with such haste, rather than put it into the

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next manifesto and have a country debate with it. Some risk for you

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to take the party? Lot of people think David Cameron is a PR guy,

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here is someone who was completely contrary to some opinion polls,

:17:10.:17:13.

standing out and saying this is where I stand. I think a lot of

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people, like with Margaret Thatcher in the past, they may not agree

:17:16.:17:21.

with him on this issue, but I think they will respect him for more it.

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The next election will not be about gay marriage t will be about the

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National Health Service, the economy and jobs. Just as civil

:17:27.:17:31.

partnerships were accepted, just as the controversy of Section 28 went

:17:31.:17:35.

away, this will go away, I do not believe this will be a big issue at

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the next election. We will see. Thank you very much.

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They buried the first two of the victims of the massacre at Sandy

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Hook Elementary School, boys of six years old. The country is still in

:17:49.:17:52.

shock, and political reaction is not much further than President

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Obama's question of visiting violence on America's children is

:17:55.:18:00.

the price of freedom. What to do about the semi-sacred state us of

:18:00.:18:05.

guns in parts of the US is the big question. One American lepblgs lace

:18:05.:18:08.

lator has delivered himself of the wisdom that he thinks that the

:18:08.:18:12.

reason for the tragedy at the school was because the principal

:18:12.:18:22.
:18:22.:18:29.

The Second Amendment's association with freedom and rights is what

:18:29.:18:34.

lies at the heart of the debate on guns in the US. Forget the word

:18:34.:18:38.

"militia" for many this is the guarantee against tyranny.

:18:38.:18:43.

Yet, the soul-searching after the Newtown massacre, has inevitably

:18:43.:18:48.

led to questions about the state of gun control in America. These

:18:48.:18:58.

tragedies must end. To end them we must change. We will be told that

:18:58.:19:05.

the causes of such violence are complex, and that is true. No

:19:05.:19:10.

single law, no set of laws, can eliminate evil from the world or

:19:10.:19:16.

prevent every senseless act of violence in our society. But that

:19:16.:19:23.

can't be an excuse for inaction. Surely we can do better than this?

:19:23.:19:29.

It has been tried before, after the assassinations of President Kennedy,

:19:29.:19:36.

Martin Luther King, and Robert Kennedy, the 1968 Begun Control Act,

:19:36.:19:41.

crew the right to own a gun from certain catagories of criminals,

:19:41.:19:45.

including drug addictss and those with severe mental disorders. Then

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there was the Brady Act, named after the former assistant to

:19:50.:19:54.

Ronald Regan, shot in an assassination ateplt tempt. It

:19:54.:19:58.

requires background checks -- attempt. It requires background

:19:58.:20:01.

checks, flagging up those with a criminal record or history of

:20:01.:20:05.

mental health problems. President Clinton also pushed a ban on

:20:05.:20:09.

assault weapons through Congress in 194. But that law was allowed to

:20:09.:20:14.

lapse a decade later. There are now calls to reinTate it T It is time

:20:14.:20:19.

to pass an enforcable and effective assault weapons ban, one that isn't

:20:19.:20:24.

riddled with loopholes and easy evasion. A previous ban expired in

:20:24.:20:29.

2004, and even though President Bush supported reinstating it,

:20:29.:20:33.

Congress never acted, that must change. Congress should also ban

:20:34.:20:36.

the high-capacity magazines that have been used again and again in

:20:36.:20:42.

these mass shootings. A senator has now promised to

:20:42.:20:46.

introduce the necessary legislation next year. But in Newtown, it is

:20:46.:20:53.

too late. We have the author of More Guns

:20:53.:20:57.

Less Crime, and believes areas that have experienced increased gun

:20:57.:21:01.

ownership have seen a drop in crime. He joins us from fill Delphiia.

:21:01.:21:06.

Do you think guns are good for America? I think guns make it

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easier for bad things to happen, but they also make it easier for

:21:10.:21:14.

people to defend themselves, and prevent bad things from happening.

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On that, more lives are saved as a result of people owning guns. You

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see this around the world. Every place around the world that we have

:21:22.:21:26.

crime data before and after a ban, shows that when you have a ban,

:21:26.:21:32.

murder rates go up by at least a little bit, and they often go up by

:21:32.:21:35.

dramatic amounts. There is a simple reason for that. That is, when you

:21:35.:21:39.

ban guns, it is the law-abiding, good citizens, who turn in their

:21:39.:21:47.

guns, not the criminals. We disarm law-abiding citizens with regard to

:21:47.:21:51.

criminals, you don't make it safer, you make it easier for criminals to

:21:51.:21:55.

commit their crimes. You do accept if you were designing a modern

:21:55.:22:00.

constitution for a modern country, you would not put in the right to

:22:00.:22:04.

bear arms? I don't see. That police are extremely important in

:22:04.:22:07.

protecting people. They are the single most important factor, but

:22:07.:22:10.

at the same time, the police can't be there all the time. They

:22:10.:22:13.

virtually always arrive on the crime scene after the crime has

:22:13.:22:17.

been committed. The question is, what do you advise someone who is

:22:17.:22:20.

being raped, or robbed or murdered to do when they are having to

:22:20.:22:24.

confront a criminal by themselves. Simply telling them to behave

:22:24.:22:27.

passively is not very good advice. It is actually much more likely to

:22:27.:22:34.

get you killed, or harmed, than having a gun for protection. Plus

:22:34.:22:39.

the fact that you have a gun can deter criminals. Take Britain and

:22:39.:22:44.

the United States, one interesting contrast is residential robbers,

:22:44.:22:49.

the rate at which burglars break into homes where the residents are

:22:49.:22:53.

home. Britain as twice the rate than the US. What is more telling,

:22:53.:22:57.

only 13% of the time when burglars occur in the United States are

:22:57.:23:01.

Americans in their homes. In Britain when it occurs, 59% of the

:23:01.:23:06.

time, when a burglar comes it is when people are in the home.

:23:06.:23:10.

American burglars spend a longer time casing the homes before they

:23:10.:23:14.

break in. The number one reason they gave, they spend twice as long

:23:14.:23:18.

casing homes than the British counterpart. We are going to trade

:23:18.:23:21.

statistic cystics, can you remind us precisely how many gun murders

:23:21.:23:27.

there were in the United States last year? There is more than in

:23:27.:23:33.

Britain. You have about 8,500. There were 550 murders all up in

:23:34.:23:39.

Britain last year? The murder rate for Britain compared to the United

:23:39.:23:42.

States was lower before you had gun control laws. That is true in other

:23:42.:23:46.

countries. When you have gun control, murder rates go up. There

:23:46.:23:51.

are lots of reasons why murder rates vary across countries.

:23:51.:23:55.

this argument it would have been a good thing had the headteacher and

:23:55.:23:59.

the teachers at that school, where this awful tragedy happened last

:23:59.:24:04.

Friday, had they been armed, it would have been better, would it?

:24:04.:24:10.

think so. Look, there is one phenomenon we see here, all the

:24:10.:24:13.

multiple victim public shootings in the United States, since at least

:24:13.:24:17.

1950, with one exception, and all the multiple victim public

:24:17.:24:20.

shootings in Europe, even in Switzerland, have all he occurred

:24:21.:24:25.

where guns are banned. In Switzerland it is very easy to get,

:24:25.:24:30.

carry a concealed handgun, half the time you don't need a permit, the

:24:30.:24:34.

other half it is easy to get a permit. There is a couple of big

:24:34.:24:40.

multiple shooting victims in Switzerland. Each has occurred,

:24:40.:24:43.

where tiny areas where guns aren't aed load. One example from the

:24:43.:24:49.

United States. This is just like all the others, in, we had the

:24:49.:24:52.

Aurora movie theatre shooting in July. There were seven movie

:24:52.:24:56.

theatres within a 20-minute drive of the killer's apartment, only one

:24:56.:24:59.

banned guns. The killer didn't go to the movie theatre that was

:24:59.:25:03.

closest to his home, he didn't go to the largest one, there was one

:25:03.:25:09.

movie theatre that brags about having the largest auditoriums in

:25:09.:25:14.

the state. Instead he went to the single movie theatre that banned

:25:14.:25:17.

concealed handguns, and prevented people from defending themselves.

:25:17.:25:22.

The simple way to think about this, God forbid, some violent criminal

:25:22.:25:26.

was threatening you and your family, would you feel safer putting a sign

:25:26.:25:32.

in your front yard saying this home is a gun-free zone. Would that stop

:25:32.:25:34.

the criminal attacking you there. Nobody would do that. Would you put

:25:34.:25:39.

a sign like that in front of your home. Thank you.

:25:39.:25:48.

Now Lionel Schriver wrote the novel We Need To Talk About Kevin, about

:25:48.:25:52.

massacre in a school. Can we talk about this. You were born in the

:25:52.:25:57.

states, you are about to take British citizenship? Definitely.

:25:57.:26:01.

you continue your self-improvement. With more stories like this,

:26:01.:26:05.

definitely. Do you understand why the gun has got this special place

:26:05.:26:15.
:26:15.:26:16.

in American culture? It runs very deep in the history. I had to

:26:16.:26:21.

memorise part of the declaration of independence in junior high school,

:26:21.:26:26.

most importantly that bit about how the state governs at the consent of

:26:26.:26:33.

the governed, and it is up to the governed, to consent or withdraw it.

:26:33.:26:36.

And abolish the Government and start another one. The first time

:26:36.:26:43.

we did that, we did that violently. Schoolchildren learn this, that if

:26:43.:26:47.

you don't like your Government, you essentially have the right, the

:26:47.:26:53.

moral right to overthrow it. I don't think it is an exaggeration

:26:53.:26:57.

to say there is an element of the the gun right's lobby that really

:26:57.:27:02.

has to do with, in the back of their minds, if push comes to shove,

:27:02.:27:09.

we should be able to overthrow the Government by force. But this is a

:27:09.:27:12.

mature, stable democracy, there is no chance of the state being

:27:12.:27:15.

overthrown? Of course not, it is a fantasy. That is one of the things

:27:15.:27:22.

that is a little odd about it. I mean, there have been occasions

:27:22.:27:26.

where citizens tried to withdraw their consent, and it didn't work

:27:26.:27:36.
:27:36.:27:38.

out very well. Look at Wacko, Timothy McVai, killed by lethal in-

:27:38.:27:41.

- McVeigh, killed by lethal injection, it is an absurdty. There

:27:41.:27:46.

is an element in the United States that is very uncomfortable with the

:27:46.:27:49.

states, suspicious, and even hostile. And feels that rather than

:27:49.:27:58.

the state needing to have that classic monopoly on violence, that

:27:58.:28:01.

that the citizen needs to be armed to counter balance the power of the

:28:01.:28:06.

state. When you hear an argument like the one we have just heard

:28:06.:28:13.

there, put pretty cogently by that fella in Philadelphia, about people

:28:13.:28:16.

protecting themselves, do you understand that? Yes, I do. I

:28:17.:28:19.

understand the primitive need to defend yourself, especially in the

:28:19.:28:25.

country where lots of other people have guns. It does compound itself.

:28:25.:28:28.

If many other people in your surround are armed, then you feel

:28:28.:28:35.

like a fool not to be. Is there something uniquely man nef lent

:28:35.:28:39.

about Americans? -- Uniquely menacing as an environment? No, I

:28:39.:28:48.

don't think so. What's behind it? think the gun has become an emblem

:28:48.:28:52.

of that unfettered, individual liberty, that Americans are told

:28:52.:28:57.

over and over again, that they enjoy. But they don't really have.

:28:57.:29:05.

That makes the gun even more important. The truth is Americans

:29:05.:29:10.

are as overtaxed and overregulated and controlled with this, that and

:29:10.:29:15.

the other thing, as any other country. They are told all the time

:29:15.:29:21.

they are free. They don't feel free, I think the gun has a way of giving

:29:21.:29:31.
:29:31.:29:35.

you that sensation of real liberty. Guns convey power. They convey so

:29:35.:29:39.

much power, when you think about it, all you can get people to do, if

:29:39.:29:43.

you have one, take off their clothes, let you into their house,

:29:43.:29:49.

give you all their money. It's amazing that every American doesn't

:29:49.:29:55.

have a gun. Just 0 to talk briefly about this awful -- just to talk

:29:55.:29:58.

briefly about this awful killing. Given the subject matter of your

:29:58.:30:04.

own novel, We Need To Talk About Kevin what did you conclude when

:30:04.:30:13.

you saw what happened? Mmm. Nothing. That's what's so difficult

:30:13.:30:18.

about these things, is they believe you stymied. There is nothing to

:30:18.:30:22.

conclude, you know, there has been, one of the reasons we are talking

:30:22.:30:26.

about gun control, is that it's one of the only things to, one of the

:30:26.:30:32.

only lessons to draw, because otherwise you just are left with

:30:32.:30:37.

the capacity of human beings, especially unbalanced ones, in this

:30:37.:30:44.

case, for man nef lens, and there is nothing to say. I was approached

:30:44.:30:48.

by countless newspapers over the weekend to write for them. I had to

:30:48.:30:54.

turn them down, partly out of a sense of humility. Incapacity.

:30:54.:31:01.

felt you could say nothing? I could say nothing.

:31:01.:31:07.

The detail about this killing that most upset me, was the fact that

:31:07.:31:12.

these little children were shot multiple times, and with accuracy,

:31:12.:31:21.

to absolutely make sure they were dead. My imagining of most people

:31:21.:31:27.

who fantasise about this kind of an incident, ahead of time, once they

:31:27.:31:30.

get there, I don't think it usually feels the way they think it is

:31:31.:31:35.

going to. That gives them some kind of pause. But this guy, there was

:31:35.:31:40.

no pause, and once he was actually putting a gun into a six-year-old's

:31:40.:31:45.

face, he didn't hesitate. That just floors me.

:31:45.:31:48.

Thank you. There were protests again tonight

:31:48.:31:52.

in Northern Ireland, where loyalists dream of red, white and

:31:52.:31:55.

blue Christmas. One police officer was injured. They are still

:31:55.:31:59.

agrieved, the loyalists, at the decision by Belfast City Council

:31:59.:32:03.

that the Union Flag is only to be flown on designated days rather

:32:03.:32:06.

than year-round. There has been violence associated with some of

:32:06.:32:09.

these protests, but the majority are passing off peacefully. In the

:32:09.:32:13.

context of the province's history, that in itself, may be significant.

:32:13.:32:22.

We report from there. They streamed into the city senter

:32:22.:32:27.

from their housing estates. A community bereft. The flagpole

:32:27.:32:31.

above Belfast City Hall, striped of the Union Flag. Only to return on

:32:31.:32:37.

select days, like the Queen's birthday. Attention, attention,

:32:37.:32:42.

please move now, failure to move, may make you liable to arrest.

:32:42.:32:49.

Christmas shoppers looked on, then carried on. But Northern Ireland's

:32:49.:32:54.

working-class Protestants are used to not fitting in. While Belfast

:32:54.:32:59.

bustles with progress and promise, they feel left behind, a sense of

:32:59.:33:07.

abandonment, that has made the flag dispute so potent. Our British

:33:07.:33:11.

identity is being eroded and undermined at every turn. It is

:33:11.:33:15.

very frustrating for young people to see all aspects of the culture.

:33:15.:33:19.

Our very identity as British citizens is under attack.

:33:19.:33:24.

anguish over this issue shows it is about far more than what is or

:33:24.:33:28.

isn't flying over City Hall here. For loyalists, the Union Flag is a

:33:28.:33:33.

symbol of what binds them to the rest of us in the United Kingdom

:33:33.:33:41.

its remove, they say, is prove that all of that is --. Its removal,

:33:41.:33:47.

they say, is proof that all of that is at risk. The City Hall, once a

:33:47.:33:51.

symbol of power, voted to take down the flag. Catholic councillors

:33:51.:33:56.

might have seen it gone for good, but accepted a compromise to fly it

:33:56.:34:00.

on selected days. A community worker is trying to help fellow

:34:00.:34:04.

loyalists deal with their loss. A former paramilitary, he believes

:34:04.:34:08.

his old Republican enemies have gone too far. We were promised a

:34:08.:34:11.

dividend from the peace, and the only dividend we have got from the

:34:11.:34:14.

peace is a continual erosion of our Britishness. The Republicans are

:34:14.:34:19.

playing this game, and the game is to a different type of war, a

:34:19.:34:22.

totally different type of war, it is war. It is a war of removing

:34:22.:34:26.

everything we hold dear, so they can gain plaudits in their

:34:26.:34:31.

community for doing that. Since the vote was taken, loyalist

:34:31.:34:36.

anger has been expressed in time- honoured ways. Members of the

:34:36.:34:39.

Alliance Party, that brokered the flag compromise have been

:34:39.:34:44.

threatened. Their offices and homes attacked. A petrol bomb was thrown

:34:44.:34:50.

into a police woman's car, she was lucky to get out. Tonight, another

:34:50.:34:54.

police officer was injured in Belfast, as hundreds of

:34:54.:34:59.

demonstrators blocked roads. But, over the last week, most of the

:34:59.:35:08.

protests have been peaceful. The word "enclave" might have been

:35:08.:35:13.

invented for this place. Themed in by giant peace walls, the

:35:13.:35:16.

inhabitants describe themselves as prisoners. I will take you to my

:35:16.:35:20.

house, show you a good example of where we have been attacked. Emma

:35:20.:35:25.

shows me the broken glass and China that she says is regularly hurled

:35:25.:35:31.

in from the surrounding nationalist estates. In interface areas it is

:35:31.:35:35.

two-way traffic. But like many residents here, Emma has had enough.

:35:35.:35:40.

My house of petroled bombed on the 1st July last year. There was kids

:35:40.:35:44.

stuff along here. We had a trampoline there, there was over

:35:44.:35:48.

�250 worth of damage. Was anyone in the garden? I was in the kitchen.

:35:48.:35:53.

The petrol bombing of her garden while her two children were at home,

:35:53.:35:58.

has driven her to leave. Danny is also look to go move.

:35:58.:36:02.

Believing her two daughters, playing here with their cousin,

:36:02.:36:06.

aren't safe. The flag issue has seen her join the protests for the

:36:06.:36:09.

first time ever. She's not interested in politics, but she

:36:09.:36:14.

says it is time for people like her to speak out. I'm not going to

:36:14.:36:18.

stand and argue with somebody over a flag, or over a religion, you

:36:18.:36:22.

know, I don't believe in that. I sit in the house just with the kids

:36:22.:36:28.

and that's it. What's made you go out and take part in protests on

:36:28.:36:32.

this issue? The actual just pure anger over what is being said. We

:36:32.:36:36.

are being put down, told you aren't British, you aren't this, you can't

:36:36.:36:42.

have your flag. What we are putting up with in the area. I mean not

:36:42.:36:45.

being able to let your kids out and play. That is a constant thing.

:36:45.:36:49.

That has been getting worse. This time of year we shouldn't have to

:36:49.:36:53.

worry about it. # God save our glorious Queen

:36:53.:36:57.

# God save our Queen The street demonstrations are

:36:57.:37:00.

giving such people a voice. They are largely organised on social

:37:00.:37:06.

media. Crowds gather quickly, roads are closed, and they move on. One

:37:06.:37:11.

of those taking part is Jamie. He's unusual, a young loyalist, willing

:37:11.:37:15.

to be interviewed, without covering his face. He wants to go into

:37:16.:37:19.

politics. The mainstream unionist political parties have to reconnect

:37:19.:37:22.

with the British community, especially the young people. They

:37:22.:37:28.

have to give them some sort of avenue to express these concerns

:37:28.:37:32.

and grievances. We are not getting that at the moment. We don't feel,

:37:32.:37:36.

especially young people, there is strong representations from the

:37:36.:37:38.

main unionist parties at Stormont, we feel Stormont is failing us.

:37:39.:37:42.

Through the protests, people like myself are trying to encourage all

:37:42.:37:50.

young people to get involved politically.

:37:50.:37:57.

In a city where some communities remain in tribes, Reverend Chris

:37:57.:38:01.

Hudson gets about. The peace we have here in Northern Ireland is

:38:01.:38:04.

not the property of politicians, nor the property of paramilitaries,

:38:04.:38:09.

it is the property of all of us. From a republican family in Dublin,

:38:09.:38:13.

he's a trusted go-between for British loyalism. His Unitarian

:38:13.:38:17.

church, of course, supports gay marriage, so he's not one to give

:38:17.:38:23.

up on a cause. And sees signs of change. What we do need to do is

:38:23.:38:30.

engage with those who are feeling hurt and an grow. We can't just,

:38:30.:38:32.

you know, disassociate ourselves from them, and say they are the

:38:32.:38:36.

rabble, they are the thugs. We have got to engage with them. The people

:38:36.:38:44.

I speak to, within loyalism, people that are seeing and regarded as

:38:44.:38:48.

significant in their communities, I find that they are willing to

:38:48.:38:53.

engage on a lot of different levels. On the level of inclusiveness,

:38:53.:38:57.

reconciliation, they are willing to look and talk to the other

:38:57.:39:02.

community, and see how they can find common ground.

:39:02.:39:06.

If loyalists have felt cornered, the recent census should have given

:39:06.:39:12.

pause. The Catholic population might be rising at a faster rate,

:39:12.:39:15.

but, middle-class Catholics, in particular, are prospering, they

:39:15.:39:21.

are doing it as citizens of the UK, not Ireland. Jim Wilson wants young

:39:21.:39:26.

loyalists to start catching up. The first step is to get more of them

:39:26.:39:30.

to vote. Our community has got so desperate in the sense that nothing

:39:30.:39:33.

has been happening for them, nothing is being done for them.

:39:33.:39:36.

They have lost faith in their politicians and the willing to out

:39:36.:39:41.

and vote, and some young lads have lost the will to register to vote.

:39:41.:39:45.

The difficulty in the City Hall is that is the only way we will get it

:39:45.:39:48.

back is getting kids to register to vote and come out and vote. They

:39:48.:39:52.

need good leadership. Normally when you hear from loyalism, it is

:39:52.:39:57.

always bad news, rage and rioting. As a community, it remains insecure

:39:57.:40:01.

and angry. But with these flag protests, I think you are starting

:40:01.:40:07.

to see some of that being expressed differently. Traditions pass

:40:07.:40:13.

through the generations here. So do grievances. And if loyalists can

:40:13.:40:17.

choose political engagment over despair, and respond constructively

:40:17.:40:21.

to fresh calls to end the protests, they might have a chance to be

:40:21.:40:27.

heard. Our latest audience research shows

:40:27.:40:34.

that for the very first time, a nice carddy and a pair of slippers

:40:34.:40:38.

have been eclipsed as Newsnight's viewers' most requested Christmas

:40:38.:40:48.
:40:48.:40:49.

present. As supermarkets and retail outlets reveal that the onsie are

:40:49.:40:59.
:40:59.:41:01.

the most popular item. Where this lack of taste came from is a

:41:01.:41:05.

mystery, not to Mr Smith. At this special time of year,

:41:05.:41:10.

what's better than bundling up warm and cosy with that certain someone,

:41:10.:41:18.

as part of a poor Newsnight reconstruction.

:41:18.:41:28.

And what has Santa brought this lucky pair? Onesies.

:41:28.:41:35.

That's right, kids, forget the tangerine and hoola hoop, the thing

:41:35.:41:41.

the stars are finding under the tree, is a one-piece garment in

:41:41.:41:45.

luxurious man made fibres. Lounging

:41:45.:41:48.

# Lounging # Mellow out and lounging

:41:48.:41:52.

I know what you are thinking, is this new fangled loungewear really

:41:52.:41:58.

so different from the grim old long john, and the surgical stocking.

:41:58.:42:02.

many people have told me they will never wear it. And I Geoff them one,

:42:02.:42:06.

and they get one, and -- I give them one, and they get one, and

:42:06.:42:10.

they come back and say they are very, very sorry, it is the most

:42:10.:42:15.

comfortable piece of clothing they have ever tried on.

:42:15.:42:20.

Do you like facts about retail? Well, one high street chain told us

:42:20.:42:25.

their sales of onesies was up almost 600% compared to last year.

:42:25.:42:28.

Another said they have sold a onesie a minute, since they were

:42:28.:42:32.

launched two months ago. Maybe in the current economic environment

:42:32.:42:36.

people love the idea of wearing a onesie, because it is sort of, yes,

:42:37.:42:40.

very child-like, almost babyish, you put it on, it is nice and cosy,

:42:40.:42:43.

there is nothing to worry about, maybe it is like a security blanke.

:42:43.:42:53.
:42:53.:42:55.

I think some of our readers probably love a onesie. They are

:42:55.:42:59.

very warm, comfortable and if you are trying to save on the heating

:42:59.:43:02.

bills. They don't look great. you think my hip looks odd, look at

:43:02.:43:09.

the rest of me! Let us now praise famous men, in tights. Role models

:43:09.:43:17.

like TV's John Noakes have shown us the all-in-one can be as elegant as

:43:17.:43:21.

practical. Winston Churchill himself banished the mystery of

:43:21.:43:27.

messy shirt tails, with his customised siren suit. We are not

:43:27.:43:32.

here to give political advice, if we were, we might be saying to

:43:32.:43:36.

these fellas, chill out and snuggle down. They are so phenomenally

:43:37.:43:40.

popular, everybody can wear one, everybody looks equally rubbish in

:43:40.:43:44.

them, you don't worry what you look like. They are incredibly

:43:44.:43:48.

comfortable. You could go back ten years ago and people would say they

:43:48.:43:51.

never would wear tracksuit bottoms, once you do, they are too

:43:51.:43:54.

comfortable not to wear them. So, enjoy. It is something that people

:43:54.:44:02.

want, but it takes them a bit of time to get used to it. I guess the

:44:02.:44:07.

woman from Cosmo hasn't tried one on yet. When you first try them on

:44:07.:44:13.

it is difficult to take off. The One Nation, on Newsnight? You

:44:13.:44:18.

are laughing now, I mean that metaphorically, but at least you

:44:18.:44:28.
:44:28.:44:28.

are forewarned for when you unwrap one next week! Right, tomorrow

:44:29.:44:38.
:44:39.:45:00.

morning's front pages now. The That's it for tonight. $500 million

:45:00.:45:05.

of space exploration ended in a double crash on the moon about 45

:45:05.:45:09.

minutes ago. NASA organised for two spacecraft, each about the size of

:45:09.:45:15.

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