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Among other civil rights milestones, this year marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, the historic rally that concluded with Martin Luther King Jr. unleashing his most legendary words on a watching nation. Today, "I Have a Dream" ...

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audrey ruth

December 08, 2013  5:47am

Paul, the guy who described Obama as "deeply faithful" is terribly deceived. Does the Bible mean nothing to him, as it apparently does to Obama?

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Paul Schryba

October 06, 2013  8:16pm

audrey ruth: Here is another reference to one of President Obama's former spiritual advisors:"For four years he was a spiritual adviser to the leader of the free world. Now, Joshua DuBois, a 30-year-old Pentecostal minister, is moving on from politics and bearing witness to the power of Christian faith inside the White House he served. President Obama is "a deeply faithful president and didn't need a whole bunch of help cultivating that faith," DuBois said in an interview with ABC News recently outside St. John's Episcopal Church, where the Obama family worshipped on Easter. "He begins his morning with a devotional that I send him every day. He worships at churches… as often as he gets a chance to, but he also lives out his faith in the way he serves this country," he said, "prioritizing the poor and vulnerable and making sure to spend time with his own family." [http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/pastor-president-obamas-spiritual-advisor-f aith-white-house/story?id=18856712]

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Paul Schryba

October 06, 2013  8:13pm

audrey ruth: With respect to your statement " Even today, Obama's pastor is big buddies with Louis Farrakhan." That is false. "President Obama has been without a pastor or a home church ever since he cut his ties to the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. in the heat of the presidential campaign. But he has quietly cultivated a handful of evangelical pastors for private prayer sessions on the telephone and for discussions on the role of religion in politics. Will Shilling/Associated Press All are men, two of them white and three black — including the Rev. Otis Moss Jr., a graying lion of the civil rights movement. Two, the entrepreneurial dynamos Bishop T. D. Jakes and the Rev. Kirbyjon H. Caldwell, also served as occasional spiritual advisers to President George W. Bush. Another, the Rev. Jim Wallis, leans left on some issues, like military intervention and poverty programs, but opposes abortion. [http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/15/us/politics/15pastor.html?_r=0]

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Paul Schryba

October 06, 2013  8:11pm

Audrey Ruth: The man you identified as a Muslim is quoted as seeing a cross formed in the sky, and that it was a sign from God in support of the March on Washington. How profound that person's 'theology' is, is not the question- your false identification of him as a Muslim is. "Yes, there is indeed a strong link between the civil rights movement and Black Muslims/Nation of Islam (Cassius Clay/Muhammed Ali is just one example). My friend, the professor of African-American studies, who is a black man, is very aware of this." Again, the only 'strong link' was that they also were for civil rights for African Americans. You fail to give any concrete reference to this 'friend', who apparently isn't willing to stand on record for his views.

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audrey ruth

September 29, 2013  8:20am

Paul, a zillion Catholics have seen all sorts of 'signs' in all sorts of places 'verifying' Mary as worthy of their worship and veneration. So I'm not impressed by such 'signs' as clouds in the sky. To be honest, that reminds me of Charlie Brown and friends who used to study clouds and imagine what they might look like. Yes, there is indeed a strong link between the civil rights movement and Black Muslims/Nation of Islam (Cassius Clay/Muhammed Ali is just one example). My friend, the professor of African-American studies, who is a black man, is very aware of this. Even today, Obama's pastor is big buddies with Louis Farrakhan. Because MLK was a Baptist pastor, the great majority of his followers DID see the civil rights movement as a Christian movement and a LOT of Biblical language was used in speeches, especially MLK's. Most of his followers did not (and still don't) realize that he did not actually believe what the Bible says about Christ Jesus.

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Paul Schryba

September 12, 2013  8:15am

Sorry- but this is good - check this out [http://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/nation/2013/08/14/2654831/] According to his family, Charlie Jackson was given the white hat by the police department, and during the speech he saw moving clouds form a cross in the sky as a sign from God in support of the aims of the march.

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Paul Schryba

September 12, 2013  7:47am

cont. The presence of violence in Dr. King's protests (directly against his wishes) and his 'association' with leaders of the Nation of Islam/Black Panthers was used to discredit him. Dr. King was clearly against the 'black supremacy' of the Nation of Islam, which Malcolm X also did after his pilgrimage to Mecca. The white cap was used by Gandhi; many of Gandhi's followers wore 'white outfits' such as were seen at the mall; their presence would be indicative of Gandhi, not black power and Islam. Your statement that "two professors of history...verified... those men in white robes and hats were indeed Muslims." Name the professors and give references, please. My example, Charlie Jackson, was there because he was appointed by the police department- [http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/nation/martin-luther-king-dream-speech /index.html]

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Paul Schryba

September 12, 2013  7:34am

Audrey Ruth: The nonviolent movement for racial equality was not a 'Christian' movement and not about establishing a 'Christian' nation (though many Christians embraced it, and the movement's nonviolence and vision of 'equality' came from the example of Christ and his teachings; ). That others of different beliefs supported it, as stated previously, does not nullify the movement as a whole. That people seek to 'take advantage' of political leaders and movements is a given. You continually attempt to associate the Black Panthers and Nation of Islam with Dr. King, without directly stating your purpose for that association. They were united in a common goal of ending racial discrimination. The Black Panthers/Nation of Islam did not believe that nonviolence would end discrimination, and Dr. King's insistence on it went against their beliefs. cont.

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audrey ruth

September 11, 2013  1:13am

Paul, you read a lot of things into my comments which were not in my mind at all. I did check with two professors of history (one of African-American studies), and they both verified my concern - those men in white robes and hats were indeed Muslims. A lot of people sought to use MLK for their own purposes, and the Black Power movement arose among the guys in the white outfits (this continues today in Obama's pastor, Jeremiah Wright who unashamedly hates white people and America, is big buddies w/Louis Farrakhan.) Jim Sparks, you also totally misunderstood me: I emphasized the point that I wish ALL people would take MLK's words to heart and truly care ONLY about men's character, not the color of their skin. My point was/is that white preachers are not given the same grace which black preachers are given. There is a much-greater acceptance of immorality in the black community, including black churches. BTW, before you make a common mistake, I am not white. I am neither white nor black.

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audrey ruth

September 11, 2013  12:36am

I also noticed that not one black conservative leader was at the MLK memorial anniversary, yet he said he wanted people to be judged by their character, period. It doesn't look like that day will come anytime soon.

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Bill Both

September 06, 2013  3:41pm

Part of the problem...he disconnect...that the author doesn't address is that "I have a dream" is only the tail end of the famous speech. Earlier, MLK pointed out the inequities in American society that still exist today. He noted that the Declaration of Independence's assertion that "all men are created equal' was a promissory note that had been returned due to insufficient funds. Like a Bible passage, it is a mistake to take one part out of context.

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Jim sparks

August 29, 2013  10:20pm

Some here wish to reject King and his message on the basis of alleged unfaithfulness in his marriage. This would be similar to rejecting Thomas Jefferson's words, "We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal", on the basis that Jefferson was a slave owner and kept one of his slaves for primarily sexual purposes.

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Paul Schryba

August 29, 2013  9:30pm

audrey ruth: So there were a lot of white hats in the background- so what? Why did you (do you) bring up the issue, asking if they were 'Muslim', without having even tried to research it in the first place? (I found the clear id and explanation I cited earlier in just one google search- so please don't tell me you tried to.) Is it that you wish to further decry MLK as a 'Muslim', or friend of Muslims- cast doubt by innuendo? So what if there were Muslims there, or Hindus for that matter; the movement to end racism, as in the 'I have a dream speech,' was for ALL Americans. As to Malcolm X being a friend of MLK, both were African Americans, both struggling to end racism; but remember, King was strictly against violence- Malcolm X and the Black Muslims weren't. Jesus also was a friend of sinners and tax collectors.

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audrey ruth

August 29, 2013  5:10pm

There's not just one man in a white hat behind MLK in that pic -- there are a lot of them. The prevailing wisdom is that MLK was inspired by Gandhi above all. He did quote some scripture, but, as noted below, He did not believe that Jesus was/is Lord. He had some Muslim friends too, including Malcolm X. The bottom line, though, is that if any white preacher is immoral, he is deemed unworthy, period. He's not given a chance by the public to repent and be restored to the Lord. But people seem to give black preachers a pass on such things. I've noticed this through the years and wonder why this is so. I also noticed that not one black conservative leader was at the MLK memorial yesterday, yet he said he wanted people to be judged by their character, period. It doesn't look like that day will come anytime soon.

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Paul Schryba

August 29, 2013  8:08am

It is clear that the speech isn't just about a 'dream', but a vision for America. Perhaps King chose 'dream', because people then spoke of 'the American Dream.' The speech itself is too focused on racial discrimination; King later recognized the connectedness of racism with war (Vietnam) and economic injustice apart from racism. Still, it deserves its place.--We are all sinners; God uses imperfect vessels. The Bible clearly tells us to remove the mote from our own eye first, and to not cast the first stone. God can choose who He wills, and we should judge the message, not the messenger. Not to excuse King's behavior, but he was jailed, beaten, his family threatened, his house bombed. That he took other than spiritual comfort...St Peter wasn't exactly infallible, either. That King was perhaps not 'orthodox', "Instead, test everything. Hold on to what is good." (1 Thess 5: 21 ISV)

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Paul Schryba

August 29, 2013  8:06am

audrey ruth: [http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/nation/martin-luther-king-dream-speech /index.html] "In reality the hat, like the one worn by non-violent freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi in India, symbolized peace. The man who wore it, the late Charlie Jackson, was a local hero in Jersey City, a working-class community across the Hudson River from New York." (I didn't look further for the other man.) It was a march for all Americans, and not just Christians. Black Muslims, contrary to King, believed in violence.

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audrey ruth

January 24, 2013  11:37pm

Who are the guys in white hats behind MLK? Are they Muslims/Nation of Islam adherents? I've seen that pic many times, but just noticed them not long ago.

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vic jones

January 23, 2013  9:18am

MLK was not a saint or orthodox Christian, but he was influenced by the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth like Gandhi, William Wilberforce, and many other civil rights reformers of the past, and would be marginalized in today's society for this reason. What passes for civil rights these days is an attempt to normalize morally questionable behaviors, rather than the protection of society's most vulnerable members. MLK believed rights are given to all by God, as opposed to today's movements that advocate force or bribery to take rights from one group and give them to another. Public discourse has become a platform for demonizing and talking past each other, instead of reasoning and listening to opposing views. The current civil rights groups have left those who are most in need of protection - unborn children, human trafficking slaves, the religiously persecuted, and victims of many other injustices in the world.

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S Griffin

January 23, 2013  12:29am

Also as far as his views on the virgin birth and resurrection; I'm gonna ride with Jesus and his word on those points. As great a man as Dr. King was, he doesn't hold my salvation in his hands.

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S Griffin

January 23, 2013  12:24am

I don't think anyone just sees Dr. King as a dreamer, at least I never have.

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audrey ruth

January 22, 2013  11:31pm

I've always agreed with King's declaration that he longed to see the day when men were judged by their character, not the color of their skin. Amen to that! I've also shared Rick Dalbey's and Charles Maglaughlin's concerns. And if a conservative Bible-believing preacher had extra-marital affairs as King did, his message would not even be considered; he would be summarily dismissed as not worthy of hearing. Such a speech in Washington would most likely be jeered, regardless of its content. Speaking of "severe polarization", what did Jesus the Christ say? Didn't He say He would rather that we be hot or cold, not lukewarm, that He would spew those who are lukewarm out of His mouth? I find it inexpressibly sad that Louie Giglio, who was initially chosen to pray at the Inauguration because of his ministry against human trafficking, was dis-invited because he had the audacity to preach the truth of God's Holy Word as it applies to human sexuality. Things are changing FAST, not for good.

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Rick Dalbey

January 22, 2013  7:51pm

I love King’s letter from the Birmingham jail. It is eloquent and steeped in Biblical language and concepts. It deserves to be read and admired. King was a social justice liberal who did not believe in the virgin birth, the resurrection or many other very basic tenets of faith. He saw Jesus as an inspired teacher. He was deeply flawed and given to extra-marital sexual exploits. You might even say he was hypocritical. But he was a man chosen by God, just as surely as Cyrus or Nebuchanezzer was, to free an oppressed people. He was brave and principaled. Many people have difficulty holding on to a paradox. I hear what Charles Maglaughlin is saying and I believe it. I also believe King was chosen to lead a people to freedom. Gilbreath writes, “Will conservative evangelicals and some members of the gay-rights movement ever find common ground on which to engage?” I hope not. Just as King was unrelenting in standing against the immorality of slavery, so we must stand against sexual immorality

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:27am

[iv] King Jr., "What Experiences of Christians Living in the Early Christian Century Led to the Christian Doctrines of the Divine Sonship of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Bodily Resurrection," in The Papers of Martin Luther King Jr., Vol 1, p. 224. [vii] King Jr., "The Christian Pertinence of Eschatological Hope," in "The Papers of Martin Luther King Jr. Vol. 1," p. 269. [iii] King Jr., "The Humanity and Divinity of Jesus," in The Papers of Martin Luther King Jr., Vol 1, p. 150.

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:14am

In a paper entitled "A View of the Cross Possessing Biblical and Spiritual Justification," King describes the various different views of the meaning of the cross throughout history and then concludes: "Any doctrine which finds the meaning of atonement in the triumph of Christ over such cosmic powers as sin, death and Satan is inadequate.... If Christ by his life and death paid the full penalty of sin, there is no valid ground for repentance or moral obedience as a condition of forgiveness. The debt is paid; the penalty exacted, and there is, consequently, nothing to forgive."[xiv] Dr. King's understanding of the Bible is quite simple: he believed it was written in a pre-scientific world and used language that was representative of its era. He flatly rejects a literal interpretation of biblical stories, claiming such a reading would be "absurd" in a Copernican world. The pre-scientific worldview that informed the authors of the Bible is clearly inadequate for modern Christians. Written by men trying to understand their social environment and place in the cosmos, the Bible is filled with "mankind's deepest devotional thoughts and aspirations."[xv] Readers who accept the Bible literally are faced with impossibilities and deep contradictions, but those who read it as myth encounter "many profound truths which one cannot escape."[xvi]

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:11am

In a paper discussing the creation of orthodox beliefs, King argues that the virgin birth story represents a pre-scientific worldview: Christ's followers believed that Jesus's uniqueness could only be explained biologically. According to King, Jesus's early disciples saw his "spiritual life so far beyond theirs" that any attempt to explain his existence as human was inadequate. He concludes, "We of this scientific age will not explain the birth of Jesus in such unscientific terms."[v] This same type of thinking led Christ's followers to externalize their inner experience of his lasting power through the story of the bodily resurrection. Those who knew Jesus "had been captivated by the magnetic power of his personality," King writes, which led them to believe that he "could never die."[vi] The living and eternal presence they experienced was then transferred into the story of a bodily resurrection. (They made it up!)

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:08am

In addressing the orthodox notion of the Day of Judgment, King suggests that we "set aside the spectacular paraphernalia of the judgment scene and the literal throne."[ix] Jesus has already come to judge the world. When we judge ourselves against the life of Christ or experience closeness to him we are experiencing the Day of Judgment. King also denies the traditional notion that some are destined for eternal communion with God while others are destined for hell. In "The Christian Pertinence of Eschatological Hope," he writes, "A physical heaven and a physical hell are inconceivable in a Copernican world ... for us immortality will mean a spiritual existence."[x] And in "Why Religion?" he says, "In reality I know nothing about heaven ... personally I don't believe in hell in the conventional sense."[xi] In the end King interprets the kingdom of God not as some cataclysmic end time or a theocratic kingdom that triumphs over "satanically inspired regimes."[xii] Rather he associates the kingdom of God with the eternal love of God on earth, writing, "When we see social relationships controlled everywhere by the principles which Jesus illustrated in life -- trust, love, mercy, and altruism -- then we shall know that the kingdom of God is here."[xiii]

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:05am

In "The Christian Pertinence of Eschatological Hope," a paper King wrote for Christian Theology Today, he explores the core doctrines. The one he denounces most directly is that of the second coming, writing, "It is obvious that most twentieth century Christians must frankly and flatly reject any view of a physical return of Christ."[vii] What were the early Christians trying to convey in predicting the return of Jesus? King states: Actually we are celebrating the Second Advent every time we open our hearts to Jesus, every time we turn our backs to the low road and accept the high road, every time we say no to self that we may say yes to Jesus Christ, every time a man or wom[a]n turns from ugliness to beauty and is able to forgive even their enemies. Jesus stands at the door of our hearts if we are willing to admit him.... The final doctrine of the second coming is that whenever we turn our lives to the highest and best there for us is the Christ.[viii]

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 22, 2013  1:02am

In "The Humanity and Divinity of Jesus," a paper written for a class called "Christian Theology Today," King clearly lays out his view on the divinity of Jesus: The orthodox attempt to explain the divinity of Jesus in terms of an inherent metaphysical substance within him seems to me quite inadequate. To say that the Christ, whose example of living we are bid to follow, is divine in an ontological sense is actually harmful and detrimental. To invest this Christ with such supernatural qualities makes the rejoinder: "Oh, well, he had a better chance for that kind of life than we can possibly have ..." So that the orthodox view of the divinity of Christ is in my mind quite readily denied. The significance of the divinity of Christ lies in the fact that his achievement is prophetic and promissory for every other true son of man who is willing to submit his will to the will and spirit of God. Christ was to be only the prototype of one among many brothers. The appearance of such a person, more divine and more human than any other, and in closest unity at once with God and man, is the most significant and hopeful event in human history. This divine quality or this unity with God was not something thrust upon Jesus from above, but it was a definite achievement through the process of moral struggle and self-abnegation. [iii]

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 21, 2013  11:30pm

Sources: 1. The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr.- - (an official publication of the Martin Luther King Center for Nonviolent Social Change). 2. "King's Plagiarism: Imitation, Insecurity and Transformation," The Journal of American History, June 1991, p. 87) David J. Garrow 3. New York Times" of October 11, 1991, page 15. 4. "The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr.", David J. Garrow, (1981). 5. "And the walls came tumbling down," Rev. Ralph Abernathy (1989)

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 21, 2013  11:25pm

ources: 1. The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr.- - (an official publication of the Martin Luther King Center for Nonviolent Social Change). 2. "King's Plagiarism: Imitation, Insecurity and Transformation," The Journal of American History, June 1991, p. 87) David J. Garrow 3. New York Times" of October 11, 1991, page 15. 4. "The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr.", David J. Garrow, (1981). 5. "And the walls came tumbling down," Rev. Ralph Abernathy (1989)

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John Holmes

January 21, 2013  8:17pm

To Charles 'Reds under the Beds' Cold war propaganda. There is a commandments which states 'Thou shalt not lie' or 'bear false witness.' Please properly check your claims. I note that there are claims that systematic spying and disruption is occurring against 'Occupy' while crimes of the super rich which have cost us heaps have gone largely unexposed / unpunished. At least Iceland had the guts to put some of their bankers in jail.

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Charles Maglaughlin

January 21, 2013  7:58pm

King's thoughts from a college paper, concerning the deity of Christ and the resurrection. http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/index.php/kingpapers/article /volume_i_13_september_to_23_november_19491/

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Oun Kwon

January 21, 2013  7:53pm

We humans are all worshipers, either the true God, or other gods of their choice. Has MLK been proven or has he become another idol for many Americans, who thrive on politics - to bring power over others and to suck power from others? "I have a dream" - has it become another empty mantra for politicians' arsenal, dope for the rest?

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Rick Dalbey

January 21, 2013  6:12pm

Gee Alan, with supporters like you who needs enemies? So I clicked on your link and found he really was born Michael King. So he really did plagiarize in much of his writing. Your "defense" document says "the editors of Stanford University's Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project discovered "extensive plagiaries" in his academic papers, including his 1955 doctoral dissertation." And it is "partly true" that he plagiarized portions of the I have a dream speech from Archibald Carey. And instead of prostitutes, Abernathy says, "King had a "weakness for women" and indulged in extramarital affairs". The only thing this site debunks credibly is that he had ties to the communist party. And of course it never addresses the papers he published where he doubts the resurrection or the virgin birth. As far as I am concerned God used him to do a great thing, but he definitely was no saint or perhaps, not even a believer. God used Nebuchadnezzar and Cyrus to free the Jews from Babylon. Thoughts?

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alan paul

January 21, 2013  5:50pm

Charles you are spreading lies and half-truths and representing them as full truths. See: http://urbanlegends.about.com/library/bl_martin_luther_king.htm Please check your facts (and your conscience) before posting. CT I encourage yout o remove Charles' post based upon the above link.

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