Comments

  1. Sportin' Life says

    Don’t know. Don’t care.

    We ARE all born FREE and EQUAL with the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness! That’s enough for me.

  2. Sportin' Life says

    Massachusetts! LOL

    I do understand, btw, that getting those rights enforced is a separate thing entirely. I’m just tired of all this neo-craniology.

  3. Mike says

    Ty: No, they do not have a choice. They did not choose to be bisexual. They choose there partner, just like straights and gays do but they do not choose their sexuality.

  4. Chas says

    AT, babe, PLEASE stop using Red Lasso. They’re always fucking up.

    As far as the question goes–I don’t give a shit. Homosexuality exists. It always has and it always will, whether it’s mental, emotional, purely physical, or whatever. What people need to do is accept it and move on.

  5. crispy says

    I believe bisexuals were left out of the argument because they were not part of the study. Uncanny how that works!

    Is that crazy ol’ Elisabeth Hasselbeck next to Baba Wawa? She made a surprisingly astute comment.

  6. says

    Cool…cool…The segment focuses on the biblical aspect of this “debate” and to think that of all five of them, Elizabeth made the more sense, and she’s the conservative one, right?

    THE HUMANIST(I believe it was) on another thread on the same topic explained why bisexuals weren’t represented at all and it srta made sense but a study on less than a 100 people in the Sweden(??)says absolutely NOTHING about the swingers in Turkey, South Asia, Latin America, Africa and even Western Europe. We’ll have to wait and see what other studies come up with…

  7. Chas says

    Bisexuality is no more and no less a choice than any other orientation.

    I’ll give you my personal history. Until the age of 14, I thought I was straight. Up until a couple years ago I thought I was 100% gay. Then I realized that although I’m predominately attracted to males I also feel strong attraction to females every once in a while/when the right girl comes around. While I’m defintely sexually attracted to guys I wouldn’t turn down an attactive girl either.

  8. Chas says

    As far as the show goes, aside from my extremely dislike of Sherri Shepard, I think all of them are pretty reasonable and intelligent. The only person I ever had a problem with on ‘The View’ was Rosie O’Donnell. I may agree with her concerning gay rights but I think she’s a loud, obnoxious bully.

  9. El Tigre says

    That ignorant whore Sherri Shepard–isn’t she the moron who also said that she thought the world was FLAT? Nuf said. God, with the exception of Whoopi and Joy Behar, that show is a piece of crap!

  10. James King says

    The question shouldn’t be “are people born gay or do they choose to be gay.” We will probably never resolve this issue. Even if it is proven that homosexuality is a genetic thing, then bigots will advocate for a medical cure.

    The question should be “do consenting adults in the U.S. have the liberty to choose their sexual partners?”

  11. Chas says

    JK, the problematic thing isn’t that people don’t accept who other people have sex with. For all the cavetching about “pervesion”, most biggots don’t REALLY care about who you fuck as long as it’s not “in their face”. In fact, a lot of the times they’re the one’s engaging in said “perversion”. It’s when you have the nerve to stand up for yourself and the love that you have for another person that they really get pissed. So maybe the question should be “Do consenting adults the world over have the right to choose their sexual partners AND who they love?”

  12. Puddy Katz says

    I stopped listening at Whoopy’s “Did you know that scientists behind the study…”
    I have never understood that locution, “Behind the…”.
    It is so offputting that I refuse to listen to anyone who says it.

  13. Puddy Katz says

    I stopped listening at Whoopy’s “Did you know that scientists behind the study…”
    I have never understood that locution, “Behind the…”.
    It is so offputting that I refuse to listen to anyone who says it.

  14. james says

    The View reminds me of the time that i forgot to take my iPod on the subway and was forced to listen to the inane ramblings of people who feel empowered by their ability to speak… i have never forgotten my iPod since.

  15. Robert in SF says

    Mid-time reader, first time poster:

    I was impressed with the response from Elisabeth Hasselbeck, in that it was reasoned, well stated and to the point. I also happen to agree with her on that view point. So color me biased. I don’t know enough about her other views to see how this example reflects a consistent approach, but so far I think she seems reasonable (i.e., she can be reasoned with).

    As far as the aspect of the religious side of the discussion, Christianity is not Major League Baseball. The Bible is not a casual rule book you can pick up and use to support a single point in black and white. There is a lot of history, culture, symbolism, cross-reference and background you need to really get a fuller picture of what the Bible (as a whole) is stating. That’s my opinion. I wish more people could discuss this viewpoint when the Bible comes up.

    Also, and this is a personal pet peeve of sorts, why is homosexuality always centered around sex?! Yes, I know…it’s in the name (homoSEXuality), but I still wish mainstream supporters (like Whoopi or the other lady, Behar?) would bring up that in a relationship, for most people, the sex is only a part of it….and as most of us may hate, the sex gets less important the longer the relationship goes on. Being sexual is not all there is to be a gay person, there is also emotional intimacy to complement the physical, and that’s a point that needs to be taken into the center stage of the debate about civil rights for gays. The phrase “what people do in the bedrooms” seems to always come up, but never “what people do with their property, or bank accounts, or what people talk about while cooking dinner together, or in the hospital when one is being treated…” I hope I am making the point.

    Sorry I am not as succint or clear as Hasselbeck, but I don’t tend to comment a lot so the deluge was backed up.

    PS Redlasso cut it off when it was getting good. Anyone know of a link to the full discussion?

  16. humanist says

    i can’t stand interrupt-a-thon shows like this. just not the way i was raised!

    it’s always good to keep in mind the participant pool from which the study was conducted. however, in terms of the brain volume, based on what we know about brain development it’s highly unlikely that this can be affected by cultural differences with any other industrialized country.

    the study had two parts, one concerning brain volume (specifically the difference found between the sizes of the left and right hemispheres) and another concerning the degree to which activity of different brain regions was linked. “brain activity” reflects cognitive processes and thus can be affected by culture, but the connectivity analysis used here is suggestive of an anatomical difference underlying the findings (i.e., that certain anatomical pathways in the brains of gay people are different), and this is (perhaps) likely to reflect developmental differences rather than a result of being gay.

    but the part concerning brain volume is pretty unequivocal. i don’t know of any reason that being gay, or being swedish would change the relative sizes of one’s left and right hemispheres. from this we can infer that the study’s results (at least from the brain volume analysis) do implicate an early developmental process at work in determining sexual orientation, and that the results of the study are widely applicable.

  17. humanist says

    expanding on earlier comments about bisexuality, i think it’s certainly just as interesting scientifically, but harder to analyze and understand (thus, logically second step research rather than first step research), and also less critical for human rights progress. when gay people have ALL the same rights as straight people, bi people will have 1) all the legal rights they are entitled to as well, and 2) an easier time trying to win the social rights they are entitled to, because so much ground will have been broken by the advancement of gay rights. right? i’m not suggesting that bisexual recognition shouldn’t be on the agenda, but i do think that research and human rights work on homosexuality has a greater scientific and social impact in terms of where we are now, both in our knowledge and in our society. after all, in the sciences, bisexuality will be easier to understand when we have a thorough understanding of homosexuality, AND that understanding is much easier methodologically to acquire; in society, it’s more dangerous to be gay than bi: in much of the world, bi people have limited choices, while gay people have none.

  18. says

    I honestly wish they could demontrate a scientific basis for being born gay – one that could withstand scientific disent by contemporary standards. Much like abortion – when you have to leave it to your emotions and your morals the topic is just too open for interpretation. If you can conclusivly say “it is this way” then you loose all this gray area.

  19. rudy says

    Nathan darlin’, There already is a “limit” on “people’s comments,” it is called the scroll button. Too long for you? Then skip it baby. No one is forcing you to read anything you deem too complicated or wordy. Exercise your options. Carpe computador!

  20. the queen says

    rock on rev. whoopi… sherri as usual is idiotic, but i was very surprised to hear liz make an intelligent comment…. there’s hope yet, folks…

  21. jason says

    I am sick of the gay/straight divide in male sexuality. The simple fact is that most men are born with a bisexual orientation. Thus, most men are biologically bisexual.

    The reason for the gay/straight divide in male sexuality is largely man-made and political. The divide is pushed by liberals who wish to use the concept of “gay male” as a tool in their culture wars with conservatives. They treat us as a politically useful pity class.

    Keep in mind that the downplaying of male bisexuality is also the result of homophobia as practised by liberals. Liberals don’t like male bisexuality. They see it as a threat to the male heterosexual ego. In contrast, liberals promote and glorify female bisexuality. This is because female bisexuality fits in male heterosexual fantasy/fetish. It’s the bisexual double standard, folks, and it’s being practised by liberals.

    .

  22. Harrison says

    Sherri, I’m glad to hear that you struggle with the idea of homosexuality everyday. Perhaps you can find something else to occupy yourself during all the free time you clearly have.

  23. jason says

    I think the sexual revolution was designed to embrace female bisexuality but not male bisexuality. How come we didn’t see this coming? We should have challenged this double standard early in the piece.

    At least conservatives have a consistent opposition to the same-sex interaction. Liberals, on the other hand, have turned gay and bi men into a segregated class which is to be confined to the margins of society. In contrast, liberals have embraced female bisexuality as being somewhat “normal” and kosher. I mean, you never hear of a female “down low”, now do you?

    You know, female bisexuals are so hot but we gay/bi guys are, you know, icky.

  24. adam says

    The mainstream media is hugely responsible for demonizing male bisexuality while at the same time glorifying female bisexuality. It’s called the bisexual double standard.

    The porn industry is also hugely responsible for the bisexual double standard. The porn industry mainstreams female bisexuality but marginalizes and segregates male bisexuality. Porn is thus a very important part of the puzzle as to why male bisexuals are ostracized whereas female bisexuals are embraced.

  25. Lucas says

    The Bible is not a buffet. You either believe all of it or none of it. You can’t cherry pick parts of it that support your perspectives and ignore the parts that don’t. There are many mentions of slavery in the Bible and yet I’m sure every panelist would disagree with that practice (as would most rational human beings), but if it’s in the Bible and my faith says it to be so…………….

  26. scar2 says

    Ellen used to have Sherri Shepard on a lot & she was hilarious. However, her comedy has lost its bite since she became a born-again christian, which apparently happened just before she joined The View. Apparently, you have to give up logic when you become a Christian. This is why I left the Catholic church.

  27. jason says

    Biological male bisexuality is not rare at all. The reason it appears to be rarer than female bisexuality is because male bisexuality has been stigmatized by liberal straight males, their female enablers, and by the gay community itself. Thus the social self-labeling of a man as bisexual has been “shamed out of existence”.

    I personally know many men who identify exclusivenly as straight but who have had sex with men. I also know many men who identify as gay but who have had sex with women. Both these types of men are biologically bisexual despite what they say they are.

    Keep in mind that alot of the research into human sexuality reflects these social influences rather than biology. Some of the research has actually used porn – which itself is a selectively homophobic entity – to establish conclusions that are dubious at best.

  28. jason says

    Evan,

    The Bailey study you cited has already been comprehensively debunked.

    The Chivers study is yet another study by researchers who are either intent on disproving the existence of male bisexuality or who have a poor understanding of male sexuality.

    My point is that you cannot draw conclusions on male sexuality simply from studies that involve showing pictures of naked people. Male sexuality is much more complex than that. Male sexuality involves a lot of psychology, much more than is given credit for by society.

  29. anon says

    Science is difficult, and not many people who comment here have a clue really if their assertions are correct or not–there just isn’t the right kind of evidence. That said, you might throw in the asexuals and autoerotics too. Studies that preclude all possibilities are likely to have problems. Alas, there are often many more bad studies than good.

    The Bible has nothing to do with science per se, and says nothing on the origins of homosexuality. Nor does the Bible need to concern itself with the origins of male homosexuality. Even if men were born gay, the edict from God could still have been that men should not sleep with men, much as a man with a hankering for pork ribs could be barred from eating them. The main problem with the Bible for believers is that it contains numerous contradictions internal to its own logic. However, aside from some wisdom, tossing it overboard eliminates this issue.

  30. humanist says

    yeah, in what way was the Rieger, Chivers & Bailey study debunked? their methodology and results seemed quite robust. the only criticisms i read were either scientifically uninformed or ad hominem. sure, Bailey’s a creep, but i don’t think anyone’s accused him of fabricating data.

  31. Kyle says

    Elizabeth gets the WORST rap from some gay men who just see her as THE CONSERVATIVE. She may be conservative in many issues, but she is not THE CONSERVATIVE with little to know appreciation for understanding us. She’s very open minded and accepting of the gay community.
    I have personally met Elizabeth and spoken to her about being gay and her sentiments were so touching and genuine. She has many friends who are gay, but stems from an upbringing which said “gay is wrong, don’t question it”…yet she questioned it and reached the conclusion that it is not her place to judge and that’s why she is embracing of her friends leading the lifestyle they choose. VERY kind.
    I watch The View every single morning, and have been watching it non stop for over 4 years now. I’m all ears when they brush up on gay topics and am always pleasently surprised to see Elizabeth taking a supportive non judgmental stance.
    Go on you tube and search for a few interviews of her where this very question is posed her way. You’d be surprise just how candid and sincere she is with her answers toward us and our freedoms to live how we choose.
    Sherri, on the other hand, is grossed out by gays…and in every gay topic they discuss, she has that digusted glazed look on her face, backed up with negativity.

  32. RJ says

    The main problem with Elizabeth Hasselbeck is her knee-jerk need to defend the Bush administration, Republican leadership and McCain as the Republican presidential candidate whenever any of them are criticized. She seems to feel it’s her solemn duty as the lone GOP rep on The View to defend their policies and actions, often without first considering whether they SHOULD be defended or not.

  33. Rafael says

    I do not follow this show. But, per this blog: wasn’t Sherri the same woman who struggled with Earth’s shape?? I just see no point is discussing this any further…

  34. nic says

    i started to get over caryn elaine johnson (stage names: whoopee cushion, then whoopi goldberg — falsely claiming jewish ancestry) when she started calling the estate tax a “death tax”.

    since she became one of the mainstream cackling hens on “the view”, i have lost all respect for her. who woulda thunk joy behar would be the voice of reason amid that cacophony?

    back to the subject: human sexuality is fixed before birth. nurture has lost to nature. nature carries with it, well, the force of nature.

    i thought that this argument was moot. i suppose the contrived “issue” serves only to allow casuistry and unchallenged regurtitation of biblical absurdities by the likes of the kaffeeklatsch knuckleheads on the (purblind) “view”.

  35. jason says

    No scientist can responsibly draw comparative conclusions regarding male bisexuality and female bisexuality when there is such a social stigma attached to one and not the other. It’s not an even playing field.

    And it is a flawed methodology to use naked pictures or porn movies (as Chivers and Bailey did in their studies) to determine human sexual orientation. Your sexual orientation is MUCH more than how you respond to a picture of a naked person or a scene in a porn movie. And there is NO definitive parallel between your sexual orientation and the orientation of the act you are viewing in a movie, for instance. Case in point: exclusively gay men who get off on heterosexual sex scenes rather than gay male sex scenes. As I said earlier, male sexuality is intensely psychological and not just visual.

    Keep in mind, also, that being turned on by a picture or scene does not necessarily mean that you are sexually turned on. You might be turned on by it in the same way that you are turned on by a nice painting – ie an aesthetic turn-on.

    Regarding scientific studies, it’s interesting to cite Kinsey, who conducted one of the most comprehensive ever studies on male sexuality. Kinsey found that the majority of men had had some thoughts, feelings etc for other men.
    This was pre-pornography and thus pre-pornographic correctness. Pornographic correctness has imposed upon male sexuality in a way that is detrimental to a healthy male sexuality. Our perceptions of male sexuality are also being hamstrung by pornographic correctness, as is evident in the mainstreaming of female bisexuality but the continued marginalization of male bisexuality. It’s a wake-up call to us.

  36. Vi Agara says

    JASON: Excellent to cite Kinsey’s research and its comparatively neutral environment, compared to today. And yes, the porn producers have indeed sculpted the sexual landscape and it is male homophobic and female bi friendly on the hetero side. On the gay side, its grave damage has been to promote sado masochism and extreme kink as a normal part of man to man sexual activity. A lot of this type of activity is drug fueled, and sure enough you find a lot of drug use in the porn industry.

  37. jason says

    Vi Agara,

    Thanks for your comments. I think a lot of gay/bi men don’t realize how damaging to male sexuality the porn industry is.

    Porn is creating a new prejudice which will ultimately turn bisexual men into lepers at the cultural level. That’s because porn says bi men must remain in the margins but bi women are OK in the mainstream. Consider that, of all the thousands of porn movies ever made which contain both genders, only a handful allow the male-male interaction but virtually all permit the female-female alongside the male-female one.

    The new homophobia is being practised at the level of male bisexuality. This affects gay men too because the phobia is essentially against the male-male erotic interaction as practised by both bi and gay men.

  38. josh says

    I really think people need to stop targeting Elizabeth so much, Sherri is the real villain of this show!! Sherri is so judgmental, and I bet she smiles to her gay friends’ faces, and judges them when they walk away. “God” gave her a mentally challenged son, who faces diversity everyday, I’d assume. So, since she has a child that is different and unique, shouldn’t her mind be more open? So, she calls herself a christian, but being a black woman, it’s surprising, since black people and women are faced with prejudices….just like the lgbt community. She needs to be kicked off this show. She’s the village idiot!!!!!!!! The earth is flat, Sherri. Here’s my fist.

  39. says

    I can totally relate to JASON’s comments. I consider myself gay and get aroused A LOT MORE by straight porn (too much info, I know).

    EVAN, that link has very little info on the outcome of the studies conducted. Other than the fact that about 30 self identified heterosexual men were part of the study but nothing else is said of them. Also the researcher, Paul JP I believe, does mention homosexual and heterosexual behavior in a “significant” portion of the population and that is telling I think.

    Also where and when I was growing up(read puberty,late teens and early twenties), most guys around me had had quite a few encounters with same gender individuals and had no issue reporting it (purely as a macho,I scored more than you, type of thing)and they were classified as “str8″. It didn’t occur to me then that in a different culture setting they’d be categorized as “gay”. And when I moved to North America, there was this divide between homos and heteros. It took me a while to understand it, and quite frankly still don’t get it. So HUMANIST, if you have any input as to what could cause certain cultures to “accept” homosexual behavior from their “otherwise heterosexual” men and other cultures (like western cultures, mostly North American, since I’ve experienced something completely different in Europe)to appear to be on the extreme end of that line, that’d be greatly appreciated.

    Sorry for a somewhat long post, NATHAN.

  40. humanist says

    Jason: it seems your only problem with the Rieger et al. study is the stimuli that were used, and secondarily your assertion that sexual orientation is not about sex. the authors of the study were careful to draw conclusions only regarding physical arousal patterns, not mental arousal patterns, and i think most of us would accept as axiomatic that sexual orientation is a great deal about sex, as it concerns the sex of the individuals involved.

    i’m confused how you can assert that porn is a recent invention. just google history of porn, or ancient roman brothel wall paintings, and you will see this is demonstrably false.

    numerous studies have demonstrated that men who identify as straight show both subjective and genital arousal more to images of women than of men, and the reverse is true for men who identify as gay. do you contest this also, or do you want to restrict your assertion to say that it’s only for bisexual people that imagery is irrelevant to sexual arousal? if so, that would be largely in agreement with the study’s conclusions, regardless of how they were overblown and hyped by the media.

  41. A Person says

    Did you guys see Twighlight of the Golds, or something like that, the movie with Jennifer Beals that came out in the late 90’s (I think). That’s what scares me about the discussion.

  42. says

    SHEBAKA: many cultures map sexuality differently than we do in the anglo-American world. There are lots of places where the division is not so much gay/straight as inserter/insertee. Only the person who gets fucked is stigmatized, while the one who fucks other men may be even more macho for that reason (parts of Latin America & the Mediterranean, Greece…). That kind of mapping was documented by Chauncey among working class men in New York in the teens & 20s and existed simultaneously with a middle class mapping into gay (anyone who has any sex with other men) and straight.

    JASON: there is certainly cultural pressure in our culture contributing to the imbalance between the way bisexual men and women are perceived. It’s really all about sexism, though, and the definition of both men and women as essentially heterosexual. All women are available for penetration, even lesbians just “haven’t found the right man yet.” They are less of a threat to the privileges of heterosexual manhood than gay men are. Often they are invisible.

    Both gay men and bisexual men are stigmatized because they threaten the stability of the heterosexist system: either they may penetrate (god forbid) a heterosexual man or, perhaps even more frightening, they demonstrate by being penetrated that getting fucked can be desirable too. (Hence the homophobic fantasy that child abuse causes homosexuality: once you are fucked a few times, you just become gay.)

  43. says

    For me, the issue is very very simple: I’m pretty sure that Africans didn’t believe in Jesus many many years ago until they were imported to the US as slaves.

    My question is: does any African worry about their ancestors who weren’t a Christian? Don’t they worry if their ancestors are burning in eternity because they weren’t believers?

    And the older generation of African Americans who always “praise the lord, praise Jesus” – are thankful to the wrong person that they were rescued from being slaves and being African! They should praise Lincoln!

  44. jason says

    What we need to understand is that this search for a cause of homosexuality is simply a matter of pity class science. Scientists treat us like the pity class and liberals lap it up. Liberals like the fact that we gay and bi men still have our sexuality discussed in terms of causes.

    To liberals, we gay and bi men are not the “sexy class”. Rather, we are their politically useful pity class. In contrast, certain lesbians and bisexual women are the sexy class. The mainstream media is also responsible for disseminating this double standard.

    It all goes to prove that 40 years of the sexual revolution was designed to glorify and elevate female sexual fluidity but not male sexual fluidity. Sexuality is being framed in terms of what pleases selectively homophobic straight-identifying men. We should NOT allow them to frame sexuality in this way. We need to be critical of the mainstream media when we need to be.

  45. Kiki says

    After the past year I have come to understand that our (American) society still has a very long road ahead. Sexual identity in whatever form it may take, for us individually, need not be justified, studied, nor demonized. By accepting my own sexual identity, others’ opinions of it become irrelevant. We begin to curve mainstream media’s dialog on the topic when we have come to grips with it ourselves.

  46. humanist says

    @Jason: WHAT? “pity class”? good lord. do you have any particular arguments to back this up? you make it sound like the simple fact that anyone’s trying to understand the biological basis of sexual orientation is proof positive that gays are considered a “pity class” by the scientific establishment. ludicrous. we (scientists) are interested in what causes our (gays) sexual orientation because it’s INTERESTING!

    it sounds like you’re endorsing a worldview of knowledge complacency, where we just aren’t meant to understand certain things. i reject that. truth is always useful to the common good. and often intensely fascinating.

  47. jason says

    Scientists have a right to explore. But I’m concerned at the prevalence of orientation studies which draw conclusions based on flawed methodology. The methodology used in the Bailey and Chivers studies is flawed. You simply cannot use porn scenes or pictures of naked people to draw conclusions regarding sexual orientation. It is a non-definitive methodology. Non-definitive methodologies lead to dubious conclusions.

  48. GraphicJack says

    What I don’t think anyone’s mentioned but is certainly relevant to this discussion on
    nurture vs. nature is that homosexuality and bisexuality exist in other animals, not just humans. There are gay horses, lesbian ostriches, and bisexual muskrats. It’s clear that gay and bi creatures are part of nature’s plan in some way, possibly to help control population growth, or maybe just to impart better fashion sense (gay men) or handle power tools (lesbians) for clueless straight people… lol.

  49. TylerAnthony says

    born-again christian,
    This is why I left the Catholic church.

    Posted by: scar2 | Jun 20, 2008 11:37:56 PM

    I didn’t think those 2 were similar at all.

  50. Ian says

    i don’t understand why studies want to liken gay women to straight men, or gay men to straight women. and this gendering of people seems a little inappropriate.

    as i read all these things about being born gay or the born gay hoax, i’m starting to come to the conclusion where i don’t really give a shit if i was born gay or if i was environmentally shaped to more likely have homosexual tendencies. i can sexually get off with a woman, but i can still create a loving relationship with a man.

    what i want to know is how butt sex destroys the family.

  51. Derrick from Philly says

    Very interesting thread, and great comments.

    ALFRED,

    have you ever heard of Coptic Christians. They were some of the first Christians and they were African. Also, if you are of Western European ancestry, Christianity came kinda’ late to your ancestors too– it had to be forced on them Before that, many Western Europeans worshipped THE EARTH GODDESS…too much power for women. That’s why they started burning them.

  52. humanist says

    Anon: there’s a mandate for basic science research, because 1) people are CURIOUS, and find it INTERESTING (except you, i guess); and 2) every little bit we understand about healthy function of the human mind/brain/body (and yes, these days that’s considered to include homosexuality), helps us know better how to treat it when something goes wrong.

    people being curious and studying other people has been the underlying basis for every major medical and psychological advancement in history. i really don’t understand your hostility.

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