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tv   John Mc Cain Newt Gingrich and Nikki Haley Speak at Kemp Leadership Award...  CSPAN  December 27, 2016 7:22pm-8:01pm EST

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and former senator and astronaut john glenn. >> sunday in-depth will feature a live discussion on the presidency of barack obama. we're taking your phone calls, tweets and facebook questions during the program. our panel includes april ryan white house correspondent for american ushen radio networks. my upclose view of three presidents and race in america. princeton university professor -- and prize winner of the washington post david maranis, barack obama the story. sound on book tv on c span 2. >> senator john mccain and former house speaker newt
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gingrich participated in discussion on defense issues and policy. the half hour discussion was part of the 2016 jack kemp award dinner and incoming u.s. ambassador to the u.n. nikki haley. so recognizing this 75th anniversary and please you can eat your salads and get started, but we thought it would be appropriate on this 75th anniversary to take some time to reflect on america's leadership in the world as a new congress and a new president prepare to take office, so we've invited two very special guests, one of whom i've mentioned already, who have been at the forefront of
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ideas, ideas that focus on what it means for america to lead, what it means for america to be exceptional and they themselves have been extraordinary leaders and continue to be and we would like them to share their thoughts on the challenges that lie ahead for our nation and for the world. so while you eat your salads, i'd like to welcome to the stage three wonderful friends of the kemp family and i'd like to start with senator john mccain who as you know graduated from the united states naval academy, he's currently chairman of the senate armed services committee, he was our republican nominee for president in 2008 and is of three weeks ago he's the proud new grandfather of john mccain the 5th, please welcome senator john mccain. [ applause ]
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>> and then next when i was -- i think i was 22 years old, that was 1994, yeah, it was 1994 and those of you who remember your political history remember what happened that year. how long had it been since the republicans had had the house? >> 40 years. >> been 40 years and the republicans came to the majority of the house and speaker newt gingrich lent me a little pumped 22-year-old follow him around the other day and that made an incredible impression on me because the first thing he did was take care of himself. he swam and met me at the office at 7:30. newt is predig eous in so many ways. please welcome newt gingrich.
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[ applause ] >> to moderate this conversation it gives me a really great enjoyment to have michelle van cleave who's been with me since i started the foundation in 2009 shortly after dad passed away. michelle is a national security expert. she's -- she was the head of counter intelligence for president w. bush, she was my dad's foreign policy advisor, national security advisor, michelle is incredibly talented and i really can't think of anybody better than michelle to guide us in this discussion and i'm thrilled that you all get the opportunity to hear her, so please welcome michelle van cleave. [ applause ]
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>> are these microphones working. yes, they are. i have to tell you that ahead of time on i spoke to senator mccain, i said i'm looking for this conversation and he said it will be lively and i spoke to the speaker and he said it will be amusing so we'll see if they live up to this billing. coming out of world war ii starting there america understood it's roll to be that of leader of the free world. and we had -- we had a purposeful national security strategy to that end embodied in sc 68 and it chartered a central role for advancing freedom throughout the world and ever since, the call for american leadership has been echoed on both sides of the aisle. however what constitutes american leadership has often
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been the matter of dispute. so in particular where to draw the line between advancing our values and our principals and advancing what is seen as national interest has been a long-standing debate in foreign policy circles. certainly presidents clinton and bush both argued that spreading american values itself was essential to our interests. and i think one would search in vein from statements by president obama to the contrary. there is a believe in many quarters that trying to promote and advance our values may not be -- it may not be worth the cost in all cases, to advance democracy, it may not be worth the cost in all cases. so let's start with that, where do you -- where do you come down on that issue? senator, please?
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>> first of all, could i say thank you. i'd like to thank the kemp foundation and family and congratulations to in this case can i haley and a very nice sweet in the waldorf. for some reason i was reminded the story of the two inmates in the chow line in the state prison, one turned to the other and said, the food was a lot better in here when you were governor. but any way -- [ laughter ] >> you can't tell that joke in illinois. i think yesterday i saw the president of the united states give one of the most delusional statements i heard in all my years, basically not only
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denying the failures of the last eight years but [ inaudible ] look at a map of the world 2009 and look at a map of the world today. you will see al qaeda, you will see blood shed, you will see millions of refugees, you will see tensions and you will see a total lack of belief and confidence in the united states of america. i would argue that this president probably has the greatest challenge since the beginning -- since december 8th, 1941, when, by the way, one of the service today down at the memorial they quoted franklin roosevelt in his statement on the 8th, but look, what the last eight years have proven very simply is that without american
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leadership things go bad. when you lead from behind, somebody else tries to lead from in front. and now we're looking at -- there was a person back in the roman times who was an opponent of the romans that said, they made a desert and called it peace. they made a desert and called it peace. in aleppo as we speak, my dear friends they're making a desert and sooner or later they're making a desert and sooner or later the russians and ra sad and the iranians and hezbollah will stop after they've slaughtered five, ten, 20,000 more people and nobody seems to give a damn and that's what the tragedy of all this and finally there was a time when mousse linney invaded eth openia, and
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nobody cared there was a time when the spanish civil war thanks to hitler and mussolini they installed a fashist government and nobody cared and there was czechoslovakia we're not going to send our young men to a place where they speak a lang we do not know. this president is going to have the greatest national security challenges in the last 70 years and so far, i think newt would agree and i'll pass this off to him, i'm very pleased with the national security team he that he seems to be assembling. >> speaker? [ applause ] >> well, let me say, first, i can't come to the kemp foundation not only recognizing the family but also i think the appointment of the nomination of dr. ben carson may give us the
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greatest opportunity since jack kemp to really make a break through in trying to help inner city americans and i think he will do so by standing on jack's shoulders. [ applause ] >> i can't imagine a better -- for this foundation to be meeting and thinking about his opportunities to provide unique help to millions of americans who really need to break out of the cultural and bureaucratic prisons their trapped in. i think the question's important and i'm probably to some extent a heretic on this topic. first of all, even during world war ii when we were far and away the most powerful country, we were about 50% of the world's gdp in 1946 because everybody bombed each other, we were the only place that had not been
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bombed and even then we recognized very severe limitations in power. so we didn't try to take out franco in spain. we didn't try to deal with a wide range -- we were very cautious about the sophisticate yets. not that they represented american values but that we -- we were advocating a way of life, prepared to defend it frankly with far more sophistication. it would be utterly hopeless. it would all be in the washington post and the new york times and in wikileaks and at least 600 lawyers would point out it was illegal or unconstitutional. we did things back then -- there are parts of the world that are
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hard. i would suggest to you, for example, if you have 4,000 people shot and 700 people killed in south side chicago in the last year that that apparently is a very hard problem. so before we get too certain about the things we're going to project, i come out of a very old fashioned conservative view that you ought to be cautious about what you do. the thing that is -- that is infuriating about obama is that they were quite cheerful about disrupting everything without putting anything in its place. and they just -- i think it's very important to understand that. if you're going to undertake a project you need to make sure you're capable of getting it done and they're whole notion in the middle east, for example, has led to a level of chaos whether it's in libya or somali or yemen or syria or iraq, it is
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astonishing that the united states could have been as factlessly led by barack obama and he and his team could be as out of touch with reality as they are. so my first advice to the new president is going to be, be cautious about what you think you know and frankly one of the reasons the senators been very generous in allowing me to work with him on some things, i can't imagine a more cautious, sophisticated professional than general maddius. he understands the region and the limitations of american power and he understands -- you know, this is not an area you engage in light little and i think he also understands our greatest enemy in the region is iran and to go back to reagan just for one second because you were there, reagan had a clear sense of high arcy. one of the reasons he did not get deeply involved in taking on the iranians even though they
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were behind the bombing of american marines in lebanon that wasn't his goal. he had one major foreign policy goal, the defeat of the soviet union and he stead focus on that goal and of course in 1991 the world changed and the soviet union dis-a-appeared. we need to rethink our strate strategies in the world. we underestimate how hard it is. just run the list. north korea, china, russia, pakistan, iran and islamic supremacists on across border basis, those six problems, any one of them is hard and the new president's going to face all six simultaneously and thas very daunting challenge for us as a country. >> mr. speaker, if i may pick up on something you said soviet union dissolved 25 years ago and
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it is inspiring to me that we are sitting in this hall, in 1941, this is where the members of nato met and signed that accord and saw us through the cold war and when the sophisticate union dissolved and all the states declared their independence, we americans were of the view that this is a time of change in history. it was extraordinary for all of us and we had looked then at russia as being perhaps no longer counted among the list of our adversaries, but in a sense that didn't last that long since we had putin come to power, since we saw the invasion of georgia and the an ex-ation of crimea and into tu crane and current activities in syria and i would add from my own background a real he is ca lation in russian espionage in
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europe and in the u.s. so we have these problems that also led to some questions about u.s. leadership and where we stand with respect to containing russian expansionism and there is a good part of the world that are a little worried that the incoming u.s. president plans to cut deals with putin to their detriment. now i don't believe that, but perceptions are important and i am wondering what we should be doing to allay those kinds of concerns and to reaffirm our commitment to nato and to our alliances. >> well, i'll comment and toss it to john to cleanup after me. look, i don't know that i want to go out and reassure anybody. i don't know what president-elect trump is going to do. i don't think president-elect trump knows what he's going to
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do but i don't mean that in a shallow way. this is a very smart man. remember, after a amassing some where between 4 and $10 billion, he then defeated 16 people for the republican nomination and john and i can both tell you this is not the easiest thing to do. he then defeated the elite news media and hillary clinton simultaneously, so to assume that this is some casual shallow guy is totally wrong, but he hasn't been through the process of planning. the people he's starting to surround himself with i feel pretty good about it. i think nikki frankly will be a tremendous ambassador and is a great choice. i think maddius is as prepared as anybody in modern times to be secretary of defense and he will be tan extraordinarily knowledgeable person about the world and particularly about the middle east. so -- but when you talk about
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putin, you know, i won't say -- trump's going to use the apprentice model and call putin and say, you're fired. trump is going to call putin and say look, this last guy was nothing. no wonder you despised him. i'd like to work something out. but remember this is what he just said to the chinese by accepting one phone call, but remember, if you really want to play competitively i have the bigger economy, the bigger military, the greater capability and so if you really want me to tell general maddius, gee, we have to crowd the russians for a while, i can do that. and your aircraft carrier will leave the med tearion and you're going to find your supply lands are in real trouble because you can't possibly sustain them. i don't want to do that because we should be able to work
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together. but i don't think he's going to ever -- i mean every time i've talked to trump and i've talked to him a lot, he never operates from weakness. and i suspect he would like to find a way to have a healthier relationship with putin than obama. frankly, i'd like to find a way to have a friendly relationship. you don't go to a kgb agent and say, hi, i'm really weak and stupid would you please take advantage of me and then be shocked he took advantage of you. >> so, what do you think about that, mr. chairman? [ laughter ] >> tough act to follow. >> could i say before i go further, i forgot, two of my role models have been this individual and jack kemp. we had been as you said 40 years
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out in the wilderness in the minority and these two individuals were probably the prime reasons why to the astonishingment of one and all we became the majority in the united states house of representatives and jack kemp when you get a bunch of egos in a room at a republican conference and usually people don't pay much attention. when jack kemp stood up to speak we all listened because we knew he had a vision for america that is thanks to this institute, this foundation is alive and well today that's why i'm honored to be here. [ applause ] >> there's an old line about ignoring the lessons of history, then you are doomed to repeat them. lessons in history when ronald reagan came to office with a clear statement of peace through strength, it wasn't an accident that that same day he was inaugurated that the hostages
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came home from tehran. the message needs to be sent that his adventurism and aggression and his attempts to divide up the ukraine which he's done, his attempts to overthrow the freely ehe lected governments of the baltic states of attempt, frankly, media reports, amendment to assassinate the prime minister of this little country called, putin is acting with wild abandon. i want to amend that. a mafia run gas station masquerading as a country. the world's 15th gdp and he's playing his cards in the clever fashion where he's now a major influence in the middle east which they haven't been since
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1973 and there's no doubt what his ambitions are. i don't expect you to follow all of these things, my friends, but recently tlafs poll in sweden, 73% of the swedish people believe they ought to consider joining nato because putin has scared the hell out of them in the arctic and everywhere i go and all of these leaders, guess what? they want to know if they can depend on the united states of america or do they have to accommodate? these little countries were part of the soviet empire and part of the soviet union for 70 -- 50 years, so what we need and i think -- and i believe that the people around president-elect trump have that kind of inner strength. it's not just maddius who is our hero but if he takes petraeus or
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mitt romney or john bolton. he would shake up the state department in a way that is long overdue my dear friends. [ applause ] >> so general kelly, there's nobody that knows more about our own hemisphere than general kelly. by the way, there's a skourj it's called manufactured mexican marijuana and the distribution point is phoenix, arizona, but he is assembling a team that i believe could be listened to. life is full of anecdotes. as you know, president-elect trump during the campaign said he was going to do water boarding and worse. and then just the other day, he said he asked general maddius, i can do much better with a pack of cigarettes and a six pack of beer. i hope he took general maddius's word for it and i think he might
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because it's obvious that he respects general maddius, so the message has got to be sent that the united states of america is not interested in conflict. ronald reagan was not interested in conflict. but the lessons of history show that you have to show a stead fast, strong position which then your potential adversary doesn't want to run the risk. but if your adversary and adversaries, my best example and i'll stop with this -- honestly it wakes me up. here is two american vessels manned by american sailors put on their knees with their hands clasped behind their neck in the most gross violation of international law by the iran n iranians and what does our secretary of state do, he waits until they're returned and
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thanks the iranians. that picture was everywhere, all over the middle east and doesn't think it has an impact. if these people think we're weak they're going to take advantage of it and i believe that it's time that the united states return to the days of old and our role model, still my role model and hero ronald reagan, who won the cold war without firing a shot in the words of margaret thatcher. [ applause ] >> so mr. chairman, you mentioned jack kemp, my old boss and i recall hearing him say so often, freedom must be won anewbie every generation and surely the current generation is no exception to that rule. my question is, are we postured to do that? we've come out of -- we understand the biggest lesson of
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pearl harbor to have been to be prepared for surprise. you have to be prepared for surprise. we built an intelligence community around that objective. where are we today in being prepared for surprises for the known/unknowns perhaps as donald rumsfeld would call them -- >> december 7th, 1941 was a moment because the majority of the people of the united states didn't want us involved or engaged in japan or germany and that event galvanized american public opinion. look at the old clip, the hand that held the dagger stabbed us, that united america, we were not ready all during the 30s, we didn't build ships, we didn't build airplanes, we didn't train pilots. the pilots that did launch that day on december 7th, 1941 in those airplanes, they were meat on the table for the japanese
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zero. they were outsped, outmaneuvered, they were outgunned and they were outpiloted and i'm very sorry to tell you that because of this cg called sequestration, we are now cutting into the most important part of our defense capabilities, and that's readiness and training. whenever you cut defense budgets, the first to go is the operations and the training and maintenance because that's easiest. and i can tell you that our service chiefs testifying before the senate armed services committee have said the following. because of sequestration, we are putting the men and women in uniform at greater risk. is it our job as members of congress and leadership to put our american -- the finest of america at greater risk? of course not. and by the way, i again, i applaud president-elect trump
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because he told me personally over the phone and said many times publicly we're going to rebuild the military. he is saying that. and he's said it on many occasions. and i'm encouraged by it. but i can also tell you there are members of congress, republican and democrat, who are simply not aware nor do they realize the urgency and the challenges that america faces in the 21st century. do you agree, newt? >> yeah, this is why we're going to have to have a great national debate. there's no signal you can send to either the chinese or the russians more powerful than rebuilding the american military. you don't want, as john knows from his own life, you don't want anything close to paroddy. you want overwhelming capabilities so the other side knows they'll lose. you're least likely to have a war if the other side knows they're not going to win.
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unless there's a clever way they can offset you. and i think that's why this whole concept. we'll see how it works out in the next couple of months in the budget. we have to profoundly revisit in virtually every aspect of the american defense system, i think, in order to be back to position where we are relatively safe in a very dangerous world. >> one last question before we conclude. i wonder if you might have some advice that you would like to offer to governor haley as she prepares for her new job in new york. >> i think she's going to enjoy very much the russian ambassador. he's a really neat guy. really enjoy spending time with him. not to mention the chinese. could i mention one thing real quick? newt and i painted a pretty tough picture. i would not bet against the united states of america, my friends. i would not.
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[ applause ] i would just like to mention, we are now energy independent. there's some of us in this room old enough to remember waiting three or four hours or five hours in a gas line because middle eastern nations cut off the oil supply. that will never happen again. we're going to be an energy exporter. if we do that, we can get actual gas to the living rooms in ukraine and eastern europe so they won't be dependent on vladimir putin. would you like to be china? some of us have been in china on a day you can't see one block because of pollution. they have a demographic challenge the likes of which are going to be gigantic. you see this device here? i have to buy a new one every six months by the time i figure it out. this was not invented in china or europe or any place else. this is a device that is changing the world. it is information. it's knowledge. and knowledge is power.
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and so i would not -- and finally, could i mention that if -- when i get depressed trying to do the lord's work in the city of satan, i go and meet with men and women in uniform, their leaders particularly, noncommissioned officers. they are the best. there is nobody that can match up to them. and i still think -- [ applause ] if we'll give them the equipment that they need and the training, small item, american pilots are flying less hours per month than chinese and russian pilots today. so but we give them what they need and there's nobody that will be able to match up with them. and could i just say that i always appreciate newt's thinking and his ideas. he's one of the people i've known for a long, long time who thinks not in one year or five years or ten years or many more. now a hell of a lot of the time he's dead wrong, right?
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but i do have the greatest appreciation for his intellect, and he will go down in history as a leader who really changed the way that the republican party governs. [ applause ] >> off of that semi endorsement from my very, very dear friend who i admire so deeply, who has been the empitome for our generation of public service at every level. let me say that i co-chaired with george mitchell a reform commission on the u.n. which we concluded was essentially bureaucratic, incompetent, corrupt, riddled with nepotism and stunningly hard to reform. so that cheerful thought, i have two actual -- i've seen you at work in colombia. so i know you are a great natural politician in the best sense of the word. you understand about bringing
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people together and listening to them and getting things done. i would just say two things to remember. one is cheerful persistence. you're going into a place that's not used to having an effective american ambassador. a place where the normal daily behavior, it's like sending trump to "the new york times" or msnbc. the natural bias, the general assembly is tough. but i think as we re-emerge as the leading country in the world, there will be a lot of folks who want to come and talk to you and to the degree i have a working model i got from the army of listen, learn, help and lead. i think to the degree you allow your natural charm and natural interest and people to connect with every single delegation and ambassador. six or eight months from now you'll have a remarkable reach into the u.n., and you'll be able to serve your country and the president with remarkable effectiveness. i was thrilled when the president-elect announced that he was nominating you.
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and i just can't imagine anyone who would do a better job. >> could i just mention one thing? [ applause ] arguably the most impactful and efficient and most admired ambassador of our time was gene kirkpatrick. i would look at the way she conducted herself and the way she represented our nation and the united nations. would you agree? >> and on that wonderful note and tribute to jean, thank you both for being here. and please join me in a round of applause. [ applause ] this week on c-span in primetime -- tonight at 8:00 eastern, president barack obama and shinzo abe visit the american naval base at pearl harbor. mr. abe is the first sitting japanese leader to visit the site of the attack that launched u.s. involvement in world war
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ii. wednesday night at 8:00, a review of house and senate hearings from 2016. on topics including the flint, michigan, water crisis and wells fargo unauthorized account scandal. >> seriously. you found out that one of your divisions had created 2 million fake accounts, had fired thousands of employees for improper behavior and had cheated thousands of your own customers and you didn't even once consider firing her ahead of her retirement? >> thursday at 8:00 p.m., we remember some of the political figures that passed away in 2016, including former first lady nancy reagan and supreme court justice antonin scalia. and friday night at 8:00, our in memorial program continues with shimon peres, muhammad ali and former senator and astronaut john glenn. this week in primetime on c-span. c-span's "washington
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journal" live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up wednesday, politico congressional reporter ilana shore and e & e news reporter emily holden will discuss the records of the men donald trump has tapped to lead his epa energy and interior departments, as well as the transitions taking place at those agencies. guests will also discuss what will happen to obama-era policies such as the clean power plant and drilling restrictions under president-elect trump. then nicholas loris, economic policy studies fellow from the heritage foundation and tiernan sittenfeld will look ahead at energy and environmental policy during the first 100 days of the trump administration and beyond. be sure to watch c-span's "washington journal" beginning live at 7:00 eastern wednesday morning. join the discussion.
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follow the transition of government on c-span. as president-elect donald trump selects his cabinet and the republicans and democrats prepare for the next congress, we'll take you to key events as they happen without interruption. watch live on c-span. watch on demand at c-span.org or listen on our free c-span radio app. now, historian matthew andrews of the university of north carolina at chapel hill talks about how the racial tensions of the 1980s were reflected in the sports. particularly when white and black athletes faced off in boxing matches and basketball games and became symbols for racial disagreements. his class is about an hour and ten minutes. >> okay. we're going to go ahead and get started. we've been exploring the question of gender

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