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The Morality of 2017

Combative, provocative and engaging debate chaired by Michael Buerk. With Shiv Malik, Michael Portillo, Claire Fox and Matthew Taylor.

2017 has been a year of sex scandals and toppled reputations; trigger-happy tweeting and polarising rhetoric; 'remoaners' and 'Brexiteers behaving badly'; 'no-platforming', 'safe spaces' and 'snowflakes'. This year some cherished values - among them free speech, accountability, democracy, sovereignty and the rule of law - have been called into question as never before. For this final Moral Maze of the year, we're inviting our four panellists to nominate their "most important moral issue of 2017" and to face witnesses who passionately disagree with them. Here are some moral questions to consider. First, as round one of Brexit talks draws to a close, is the entrenched behaviour of the various camps making it impossible to deliver a good deal for anyone? Second, in the wake of the Weinstein and Westminster revelations, while we are appalled by crimes of sexual abuse and applaud the bravery of victims who come forward to report them, have we overlooked the moral consequences of making unsubstantiated accusations against public figures? Third, as we debate whether or not to pull down the statues that celebrate our colonial past - such as that of the controversial imperialist Cecil Rhodes - how can we reconcile our history with our identity? Finally, are university 'safe spaces' an important protection for vulnerable minorities or a shameful example of blinkered intolerance? 2017: moral maze or moral minefield? Witnesses are Dr Tiffany Jenkins, Peter Saunders, Richard Tice and Maya Goodfellow.
Producer: Dan Tierney.

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43 minutes

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