After another Guy Fawkes night that kept firefighters and emergency services desperately busy, the Prime Minister has suggested it may be time to look again at the regulation of firework sales.
“It’s getting completely out of hand,” said Mr Key.
“We have to ask ourselves why we put our emergency services through this every year.
“We’ve gotten completely away from the true meaning of the celebration. I’ve been told that very few effigies of the Pope were burnt last night, nor were bonfires lit to celebrate our nation’s escape from the tyranny of Catholicism.
“Maybe it’s time we thought again about the entire thing. That’s why we intend to look again at the issue of banning fireworks.”
The proposal was immediately criticised by opposition parties.
Labour leader Phil Goff agreed that something needed to be done about Guy Fawkes night. But he said Labour would not support a ban on the sale of fireworks.
“It’s true that we have moved away from the true meaning of Guy Fawkes night,” said Mr Goff.
“But the date is an important one in our calendar. The monstrosity that is Popishness must never be forgotten.”
Mr Goff promised that a Labour government would make the burning of effigies of Catholics compulsory.
“Let’s not be under any illusions about the scourge that is Catholicism. Mr Key may not see it, but Labour does.
“We take the safety of communities seriously. That’s why a Labour government will bring back public bonfire nights, to enable communities to come together to root out the Catholics in their midst and publicly burn them.
“We also want to amend a number of statutes to ensure Papists can no longer threaten our nation’s Protestant values. We’re looking at a number of options, including amending the Sentencing Act, so that when judges are passing criminal sentences the fact that the victim was a Catholic is a mitigating factor.”
Mr Goff denied that Labour was engaging in religious intolerance and hatred against a minority group.
“Look, that’s complete nonsense. No party has done more than Labour to empower minorities and give people of different creeds and religions a voice.
“It just happens that the voice we heard loud and clear was ‘let’s burn all Papists.’
“So to suggest that we’re vilifying a minority is ridiculous. We’re giving minority groups what they want.”