Saturday, March 29, 2008

GLBT DIGEST March 29, 2008

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Forwarded from Euro-Queer
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-I received word tonight from Tomasz Szypula, spokesman for the CampaignAgainst Homophobia, one of Poland's gay political organizations, thatBrendan Fay and Tom Moulton, the US gay couple whose wedding is being usedby Poland's president to spread hate and fear of same-sex loving people, aretraveling to Warsaw this weekend. To get more information on their trip, Icalled Brendan at home. He gave me the scoop. He have been invited by aPolish TV network to come and appear on a program, all expenses paid by thenetwork. Brendan and Tom touch down in Warsaw on Saturday morning. Inaddition to being guests on the TV show, they will be meeting with gayactivists and with the staff of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights,and also attending church.

-Iran: Private Homes Raided for 'Immorality'
Authorities Escalate Arbitrary Arrests, Harassment
The arrest of more than 30 men attending a party in a private home in thecity of Esfahan signals renewed efforts by Iranian authorities to enforce"morality" codes, and highlights the fragility of basic rights in a countrywhere police powers routinely undermine privacy, Human Rights Watch saidtoday. It urged Iranian authorities to release the men reportedly arrestedin late February, and to drop charges against people accused of consensualhomosexual conduct, drinking alcohol, and other related "morals" offenses.
"When police routinely break down doors to enforce a brand of morality, itmeans a line has been crossed to invade people's privacy at any time," saidJoe Stork, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. "Iran's repressivesystem of controlling people's dress, behavior, and personal lives violatesfundamental rights." Sources inside Iran report to Human Rights Watch thaton February 28-29, police in Esfahan raided a private home and arrested 30or more men attending a party. They have been jailed for almost four weekswithout access to lawyers and without charge. Police reportedly referredthem to a forensic medical examiner to look for "evidence" that they haveengaged in homosexual conduct.

-Musical Pranksters and Tricksters - Sunday 30 March 2008
The Iain Burnside show on BBC Radio 3 this week celebrates the work of Gaycomposers and explores the link between sexuality and music.
To coincide with the 22nd London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, Iain pondersthe relationship between music and sexuality. His guest is culturalcommentator David Benedict and the music includes pieces by Szymanowski,Saint-Saens, Britten and Tippett. BBC Radio 3 can be received live and freeworldwide on the internet:

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-From American Family Association
General Motors Supports The Gay Agenda
General Motors has made a decision to help promote the homosexual agenda.
The automaker supports the gay agenda with advertising in homosexualpublications and on the gay TV cable channel LOGO. GM's Cadillac regularlyplaces full-page ads in The Advocate, a magazine dedicated to pushing thehomosexual agenda. The LOGO TV network carries programs promoting thelifestyle. Jon Brancheau, director of media operations for Saturn (asubsidiary of General Motors), left no doubt about General Motors' supportfor the homosexual lifestyle. In a letter to someone who complained aboutGM's sponsorship of an episode of the LOGO program "Adam and Steve," Mr.Brancheau wrote. "Given that this film aired on the LOGO network, which iswidely know(n) to offer content oriented for a gay, lesbian, bisexual andtransgender audience, we feel comfortable with our decision to advertiseduring LOGO's broadcast of the film."

-National Black Lesbian Conference in Las Vegas
Prepare yourself to join us in Las Vegas, Nevada as we embark upon the Timeto be Renewed. Get ready to learn, share your expertise, network withhundreds of skilled organizers, business professionals, and communitymembers - a diverse group of Lesbians from more than 35 states and over 60different cities around the country and abroad. It all starts with you!!
"Time To Be Renewed"

-GLSEN Partners with Logo to Launch PSA in Wake of Lawrence King Tragedy
GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, is honored topartner with Logo on a new public service announcement campaign denouncinghate in the wake of junior high student Lawrence King's murder.
King, a 15-year-old from Oxnard, Calif., was shot and killed in school onFeb. 12 by a 14-year-old classmate because of King's sexual orientation andgender expression. Click here to view the PSA:

-A Pew Research Center News Interest Index survey earlier in March found that
79% of the general public had heard rumors that Obama is Muslim, and 38% hadheard "a lot" about this. The current survey finds that most voters have nomisconceptions about Obama's religious beliefs - 53% say that he isChristian. But one in ten believes Barack Obama is Muslim.
Roughly a third (34%) say they don't know what his religious beliefs are,though 9% say the reason they don't know is that they've heard differentthings about his religion, not that they haven't heard about it. Notably,the impression that Obama is Muslim crosses party lines: 14% of Republicans,10% of Democrats and 8% of independents think he is Muslim.
Within both parties, ideology is a major factor: 16% of conservativeRepublicans believe Obama is Muslim, compared with 9% of moderates andliberals. And 13% of conservative and moderate Democrats believe Obama isMuslim, compared with just 5% of liberal Democrats.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-Supreme Court refuses to hear Arpaio's appeal of rulings on abortionThe U.S. Supreme Court on Monday refused to consider an appeal from theMaricopa County Sheriff's Office on whether it should be forced to takefemale jail prisoners to abortion clinics.

-Shocker: Mass Resistance declared a hate group
Brian Camenker, Amy Contrada, and the rest of the anti-gay activists at Mass Resistance have finally received some long-overdue recognition. In the mostrecent issue of its Intelligence Report the Southern Poverty Law Center, anorganization that tracks hate groups across the country, added MassResistance to its list of anti-gay hate groups. Camenker and co. join theillustrious ranks of Fred Phelps's Westboro Baptist Church and Lou Sheldon'sTraditional Values Coalition.

-Peter Sprigg Apologizes
Current immigration laws deny the foreign partners of gay Americans theability to immigrate to the U.S, unlike their heterosexually-marriedcounterparts. A bill is stalled in Congress which would address thisproblem. Last week, we awarded the LaBarbera Award to the Family "Research"Council's Peter Sprigg for suggesting that instead of uniting gays andlesbians with their partners, we should export gays instead:

-Conservative seminary in Israel pushes pro-gay event off campus
In a sign of continuing friction among Conservative Jews over the issue ofhomosexuality, a ceremony in Jerusalem to mark the first anniversary of thedecision to admit gays to the Jewish Theological Seminary was held away fromthe campus of the movement's main educational institution there.

-Anti-Emo Riots Break Out Across Mexico
A series of attacks on dyed-hair, eye-makeup-wearing emo kids began in earlyMarch when several hundred people went on an emo-beating rampage inQuerétaro, a town of 1.5 million about 160 miles north of Mexico City.

-Sex-education classes prevent few problems
Every poor, awkward preadolescent that goes through the American schoolsystem has endured a similar scenario: staring at egregiously largeprojections of male and female sexual anatomy, listening to a teacher droneon about the functions of these mysterious body parts and shifting uneasilyin their seat while their fellow classmates elicit snickers. This is thehorror of sex-ed.

-Clinton Owes Obama An Apology
I've had it with the Clintons.
The past few months I've tried to defend Bill and Hillary Clinton againstsome of the more unreasonable attacks from their critics. Just last weekendon CNN's Ballot Bowl, I defended Bill Clinton when critics accused of him ofquestioning Barack Obama's patriotism. The critics may have misinterpretedClinton's remarks, I said, giving the former president the benefit of thedoubt.

-Freepers turn on Condi Rice over comments on Obama's speech on race
Did I call it or not? You'll recall that the denizens of the Free Republicwere huge fans of Condoleezza Rice - in fact there was a draft Condi in 08movement there. However, I was certain once she commented positively aboutObama's speech about race, the love affair would be OVER in the swamps.
These are the mild, straightforward comments that landed Dr. Rice in theconservative dog house.

-Obama is the answer for gay, lesbian community
I have been called stupid, naive and a traitor for going against HillaryClinton and supporting Barack Obama as the right candidate for the Lesbian,Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender community.

-Gay Jews Confront Their Heritage
Gay Jews face the double challenge of fitting in with the larger Jewishcommunity as they come to terms with their sexual identities, and alsosearch for a place in the GLBT community.

-Rev. Jeremiah Wright Gets LGBT Support
Several LGBT people have come out in support of Democratic presidentialcandidate Sen. Barack Obama's controversial former pastor following mediauproar over short clips from his past sermons.

-Lay Church Leader Slain; 'Gay Panic' Defense Employed
Victim Victor Manious (Source:The Grand Rapids Press)
In the latest deployment of the so-called "gay panic defense," a claimed that his client, accused of killing a 62-year-old churchlayman with a bat, was acting in self-defense.

-Kansas Public School May Expell Student for Being Gay
Naturally, no public school would openly state that they were expelling astudent because he was gay. But the facts of the story, as reported by theWichita Eagle, seem to indicate that this is what is happening in Wichita.

-What's So Threatening About a Boy in a Prom Dress?
Last December, Lambda Legal filed a federal lawsuit in Indiana on behalf of Kevin "KK" Logan, a gay transgender high school student who was barred fromentering his prom because he arrived in a dress. Principal Diane Rouseliterally stretched her arms across the door to bar KK from entering. Nowthe Gary Community School Corporation has moved to dismiss KK's lawsuit.
According to GCSC's memorandum of law, KK's expression of his femininegender identity is not constitutionally protected expression. The GCSCadministrators claim that they excluded KK not because of his sex butbecause "he wore a pink ankle length dress to the prom." They claim to havebeen motivated by a "concern for all of the students who attended the prom."
But the other students at prom had known for a long time that KK wasfeminine; they understood the message he sent through his gender expressionover the prior two school years, and they accepted him for who he was.
Rather, the school administrators singled KK out for discriminatorytreatment, and now insist that KK's unequivocal feminine self-expression isunworthy of First Amendment protection.

-Lambda Legal Reaches Settlement on Behalf of University of Wisconsin
Student Who Suffered Violent Antigay Attack
'This is the first time the civil provision in the hate crime law hasresulted in a settlement of an antigay violence case --- it sends a strongmessage that you can't assault someone and get away with it.'

Gay & Lesbian Leadership SmartBrier
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-PFLAG: Kern taking first steps in dialogue on gay rights
Although Oklahoma state Rep. Sally Kern in a meeting with PFLAG did notapologize for her widely circulated anti-gay comments, she did express somesupport for protecting gay and lesbian workers from job discrimination,according to this article. "We appreciate this initial meeting [and] we lookforward to continuing today's conversation and working with Kern to moveequality forward," said Jody M. Huckaby, executive director of PFLAG. Readthe blogosphere's reaction to the meeting at Pam's House Blend, PageOneQ,Queerty and The PFLAG National Blog. (3/27)

-Grab your tickets now for Victory Fund's 8th Annual Champagne Brunch!
Sunday, April 6th, at the Mayflower Hotel, Washington, D.C. Just a few daysremain to purchase tickets to the fun, fabulous Victory Fund ChampagneBrunch, honoring Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin and featuring Iowa State Sen.Matt McCoy. All proceeds benefit the mission of the Gay & Lesbian VictoryFund-to grow the number of openly LGBT elected officials across the U.S.Join us April 6th at the Mayflower Hotel to honor Congresswoman Baldwin, oneof just two openly LGBT Members of Congress and a true hero in the fight forequality for all. Tickets are going fast, so buy yours online right now!

-Couple reaches golden milestone
Virginia couple John Cook, 88, and Waverly Cole, 78, who will mark their50th anniversary on April 15, are profiled. The two, who are both Armyveterans, have been generous supporters of LGBT advocacy groups, includingServicemembers Legal Defense Network, Lambda Legal, Human Rights Campaign,Equality Virginia and the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network.
Washington Blade (3/21)

-Did mainstream media push dead soldier back into closet?
The mainstream media coverage of the death of highly decorated U.S. ArmyMaj. Alan Rogers, 40, in Baghdad, whom friends say was openly gay, failed toinclude his sexual orientation, according to this article. Although Rogersreportedly was out to friends and active in the Washington, D.C., chapter ofAmerican Veterans for Equal Rights, which opposes the military's gay ban,neither The Washington Post nor The Gainesville Sun in Florida foundsufficient evidence to describe Rogers as being gay. Washington Blade (3/27)

-Meet the DNC's first black trans delegate
Marisa Richmond, the first black transgender delegate to the DemocraticNational Convention, is interviewed about her groundbreaking appointment.The college history professor from Tennessee is a delegate for U.S. Sen.Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., but said she would be pleased, from an LGBT-rightsperspective, if Clinton or U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., secured thenomination. Washington Blade (3/26)

-Anti-gay campaigns target out Midwestern candidates
Paul Karr, director of media field strategy for GLAAD, writes of thechallenges faced by several out Midwestern candidates for local offices whoare being targeted by anti-gay forces. For more details, visit Read Betweenthe Lines.

From HRC
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-Don't let hatred stain our state constitutions.
Don't let bigotry sway this election.
Renew your membership BEFORE our fiscal year ends on Monday.
We've received an outpouring of support for Eric Breidenbaugh since we firstshared his story last week.
Eric's devastating experience - having to learn of his partner's death fromthe TV because he was "not an actual family member" - epitomizes the crueltyof laws that discriminate against GLBT couples. Watch the video »
But his story has also helped focus attention on a chilling reality: aconstitutional ban on same-sex marriage on the 2008 ballot in Eric's homestate of Florida - and, if you can believe it, more anti-GLBT measuresmoving toward the ballot in California, Arizona, Arkansas, and Oregon.
Renew before Monday - help us enter the new fiscal year prepared to stopthese tactics in their tracks and elect leaders who will protect GLBTfamilies.

From Transgender Equality
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-Maine: Jennifer Finney Boylan never set out to be the public face for the transgendered.
Jennifer Finney Boylan wrote about her 2000 sex change change in thebest-selling memoir "She's Not There." But the novelist and Englishprofessor at Colby College was thrust into that role by her 2002best-selling memoir about the transition to womanhood that freed her fromthe decades-long torment of being a female trapped in a male body. Withthree appearances on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," two on "Larry King Live" andnumerous other interviews and public appearances, Boylan, 49, has become asunny-faced activist for the nation's transgendered and one of the mostwidely recognized transsexuals of recent years.

New York Times
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-Hot Button Ballot Issues Back In Election
DALLAS (Reuters) - When Americans cast ballots on November 4 to elect apresident, some states also will ask voters hot-button questions likewhether or not to ban gay marriage.

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-Faithful may quote Scripture to support bigotry
Re Cal Thomas' anti-gay column, "Value system clashes at home and school"
(March 12): The curriculum changes introduced by intelligent officials likethose in California are largely responsible for the reduction of systemicanti-Semitism and blatant racial stereotypes - both of which had beenendorsed by religious leaders who defended their ignorance with scripturalpassages. It's a pity so many "religious" Americans think like troglodytes.
Albert E. Menard,0,5144232.story

Steve Rothaus
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-New on the Web: a gay real estate directory
One of today's fastest growing home owner market segments is our gay familycommunities. They are highly successful and very influential members of ourAmerican society. They have the means and the need to secure loans andpurchase homes in some of the wealthiest communities. They are searching forlike minded as well as opened minded business professionals to help themachieve their life goals.

Express Gay News
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-Nittany Lion love
Those of us living in urban "gay ghettos" sometimes forget what it's like tolive outside of our little insulated worlds where we can stroll hand-in-handwithout incident or attend a gay-affirming church or have a drink in a gaybar before dinner in a gay restaurant.

-Porno Pete Want To Out Gov. Crist
A few years ago when Florida Governor Charlie Crist was running for office,allegations surfaced that Crist was gay. Crist has repeatedly denied it -not that there's anything wrong with that. After all, he isn't opposed tocivil unions, and he did direct the state Republican Party to halt fundingof the anti-gay marriage initiative.

-Gravel Still Fighting For The Gays
An Exclusive Letter From The Presidential (Very) Hopeful
The former Alaska governor, who this week jumped from Democratic party tothe Libertarians, sent us an exclusive letter pledging to fight for gaymarriage. The issue, he says, has been ignored during this campaign, anabsence he blames on both corporate media and his former colleagues in theDemocratic party.

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-Pa. Sen. Endorses Obama
(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey endorsed DemocratBarack Obama on Friday, a move that could help the presidential candidatemake inroads with white working-class voters dubbed "Casey Democrats" in theKeystone State.

-Sen. Leahy To Clinton: Quit Now
(Burlington, Vermont) Sen. Patrick Leahy is suggesting that Democraticpresidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton abandon her White House run.

-Former Iowa Lt Govs Support Gay Marriage Case
(Des Moines, Iowa) Two former Iowa Lieutenant Governors, one a Republicanthe other a Democrat, submitted a brief Friday to the state Supreme Courtarguing that the court, not the legislature or voters, is the place todecide the constitutionality of same-sex marriage.

-Clock Ticking On Illinois Civil Unions Bill
(Springfield, Illinois) There is no indication when, or even if, Illinoislawmakers will vote a bill that would allow same-sex couples to have civilunions in the state.

-Report Shows 48% Hike In US HIV Cases
(Washington) Reported new HIV infections in the United States increased by48 percent in 2006 according to new data from the Centers for DiseaseControl and Prevention.

-FDA Reviews Safety Of HIV Drugs On Heart Attack Concerns
(Washington) The Food and Drug Administration says recent data show patientstaking HIV drugs from GlaxoSmithKline and Bristol-Myers Squibb may haveincreased risk of heart attack.

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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-Gay Men Risk of HIV 'Still High'
The Health Protection Agency made the warning after new diagnoses among gaymen topped 2,600 for the third year. But the figures do seem to have begunto plateau after a surge at the turn of the century. Overall, the number ofnew cases hit an estimated 6,840 in 2007 - a fall of 1,400 from the previousyear.

The Advocate
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-Obama Holds LGBT Fund-raiser In New York City
Sen. Barack Obama waded deep into Clinton territory Thursday evening at aprivate LGBT fund-raiser in New York City where the price of admission was$2,300 per person.

-Group Urges Iran to Release Gay Prisoners
A human rights group is urging Iranian police to release more than 30 menwho were arrested at a house party for allegedly engaging in gay sexualconduct, drinking alcohol, and other activities that violate Iran's moralcodes. Iranian police raided the house in February, Human Rights Watchreported on Friday. The men have been in jail since their arrest withoutaccess to attorneys and without charge.

Marriage Equality News
Go to this link for the following articles: has chosen Seattle as the newest location for thecompany's upcoming GLBTQ Wedding & Family Expo and Rally for Equality. Theevent will be held Sunday April 6, 2008 from 12:30 - 3:30 pm at the SeattleMarriott Waterfront. Dozens of local wedding vendors are scheduled toparticipate, who actively support equal rights in marriage. Other highlightsinclude Music, Ceremony Tips, Samples, Fashion and Informative Presentationsabout the issues concerning equality in marriage and adoption for the GLBTQcommunity. Admission is free, and all supporters of equality are encouragedto attend.

-A gay rights group filed legal arguments today in a case that will decidewhether the state's ban on same-sex marriage is legal. Lambda Legal is a NewYork-based group that filed the arguments in a lawsuit on behalf of 6 gayand lesbian couples in Iowa who were denied marriage licenses, as well as 3of the couples' children.
Lambda Legal maintains that the ban denies gay and lesbian couples theconstitutionally guaranteed right to liberty and privacy and equalprotection under the law.

-H&R Block's TaxCut Online software doesn't support tax filings for civilunion couples, as two Connecticut men have found out. The ACLU has sent ademand letter to the company asking it to change its system. The ACLU alsostates "Although the tax requirements for couples with civil unions inConnecticut are very similar to the requirements for married gay couples inMassachusetts, H&R Block's online tax preparation service seems toaccommodate married gay couples there."

Pink News - UK
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-London: Met Police criticised for allowing gay hate concert
The Metropolitan Police have allowed a concert by artist Bounty Killer to goahead, despite his lyrics inciting homophobic hatred and violence. TheJamaican reggae and dancehall DJ, born Rodney Basil Price, has already hadtwo concerts cancelled in Bradford and Birmingham following protests by thegay human rights group Outrage! The Met have previously stated that artistswould not be allowed to perform unless they sign the Reggae CompassionateAct (RCA).
click here for the full article

-Scottish campaign aims to stop deportation of gay teenager
A campaign has been launched to save a teenager from Syria being deported tohis homeland.
Jojo Jako Yakob, 19, claims he will be executed if he is returned. He hasbeen held at Polmont Young Offenders in Falkirk, Scotland for the last 12months after being arrested for possessing a fake Belgian passport. Hislawyers say an asylum application for his stay in the UK was mistakenlywithdrawn.
click here for the full article

-Evangelicals attack Ecuador's protection of sexual minorities
A member of Ecuador's National Assembly has caused outrage throughout thegay community by comparing homosexuality to paedophilia and bestiality.
Rosanna Queirolo, a former model, television news anchor and triathlonathlete, won election on a manifesto of environmental protection. However,since joining the Assembly she has caused controversy by embracing thecountry's ultra-conservative Christian Evangelical movement.
click here for the full article

-Politicians and church leaders back gay marriage in Iowa
The fight for gay equality continues in the heart of rural America thisweek, as the Iowa Supreme Court considers a lawsuit brought by six same-sexcouples denied marriage licences in the state. Senior attorneys from LambdaLegal, joined by former Iowa solicitor general Dennis Johnson, will arguethat denying marriage to same-sex couples violates the equal protection anddue process guarantees in the state's Constitution. In August 2007 a trialcourt ruled that denying marriage to same-sex couples was unconstitutional.
click here for the full article

-Irish teachers face dismissal for being gay
Gay and lesbian teachers in Ireland could be sacked if their lifestyle isseen as undermining the religious ethos of schools, a conference was toldthis week. Members of the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual (LGB) group at the IrishNational Teachers' Organisation conference said that the Employment EqualityAct permits schools to dismiss homosexual teachers from religious schools.
Section 37 of the Act states that schools that promote certain religiousvalues can take action to protect their "religious ethos."
click here for the full article

-Mayor "not ready" to support gay rights
One of Europe's most bigoted politicians has once again defended nakedprejudice in his city. Juozas Imbrasas, the Mayor of Vilnius, the capital ofLithuania, was asked by journalists if he would back a campaign affirmingfreedom of assembly and expression for LGBT people in Europe. 19 mayors fromacross the EU have signed up, but Mr Imbrasas said: "I am not ready for suchthings yet." His response was unsurprising considering that Vilnius citycouncil has effectively banned any gay Pride events.
click here for the full article

Washington Post
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-Gay Youth's Slaying Spurs Call for Tolerance
LOS ANGELES -- With his school uniform, eighth-grader Lawrence "Larry" Kingwore purple eye shadow, nail polish and pink lipstick. In the weeks beforehe died, he added purple boots with three-inch heels.
Classmates at E.O. Green Junior High School in Oxnard, Calif., mocked hismakeup and slung anti-gay slurs at him in the halls. Sometimes, the wordstransformed the expressive teenager into a wallflower.


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