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Did the founders intend this to be a Christian nation?

jpwright

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Shamgar said:
Thank you for the biased commentary from a god hater. . . . MikeyC.

The text does not claim that the United States is an inherently Christian nation, it simply recognizes the impact of the Bible on the shaping of the United States, which does not exclude the impacts of Muslim, Jewish, and other religions on the United States as well. It also provides no ground that the United States should be recognized as such a nation from the signing of the bill forward, it simply recognizes the year of 1983 as some "Year of the Bible", whatever that means.

The only biased commentary in this topic comes from you. Cut it out with the ad hom attacks and calling people "god haters" simply because they don't ultimately follow what they say.

Regardless, I don't this issue has much relevance to begin with. While it is my personal opinion that the founding fathers were wise, respectable, and unbiased towards the Christian faith, even if things were just the opposite it would still be zero justification for a theocratic government. In today's day it's important to think critically instead of basing our laws on vague, contradictory statements from the first few presidents.
 

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dogger807 said:
Wow this is a long one ... and I just have too throw my two cents in.

Even if the founding fathers did want this country to be basically christian, (Which is quiet possible given the beliefs of the time and the social stigma of being a non believer.) this does not mean we have to be one at this time. when a full 10% are willing to declare/ admit to atheism. (rounded figure from the lowest bias of 5% from fox news and highest of 15% from several atheist groups.) This shows an evolution away from the world view prevalent at the start of our country.

Since this is a sizable amount of the population (even at 5%) their rights must be observed as well.
Why? Why should the majority need to curb their beliefs to suit a minority?

In a democracy, it's usually viewed as the antithesis of fairness to have a minority dictate agenda to the majority.
 

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jpwright said:
The text does not claim that the United States is an inherently Christian nation, it simply recognizes the impact of the Bible on the shaping of the United States, which does not exclude the impacts of Muslim, Jewish, and other religions on the United States as well. It also provides no ground that the United States should be recognized as such a nation from the signing of the bill forward, it simply recognizes the year of 1983 as some "Year of the Bible", whatever that means.

The only biased commentary in this topic comes from you. Cut it out with the ad hom attacks and calling people "god haters" simply because they don't ultimately follow what they say.

Regardless, I don't this issue has much relevance to begin with. While it is my personal opinion that the founding fathers were wise, respectable, and unbiased towards the Christian faith, even if things were just the opposite it would still be zero justification for a theocratic government. In today's day it's important to think critically instead of basing our laws on vague, contradictory statements from the first few presidents.

What is the Muslim impact on the USA? What laws has it inspired?
 

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Yeah, the Christian faith has definitely had more impact than any other religion. However, just because a majority rules, doesn't mean they can limit the rights of the minority. Christians can vote with faith as their guide, but when their faith begins to inhibit the rights of others, our nation ceases to be great. I believe our nation to be great because we the people can have a powerful voice, but the little guy has a voice to, and his voice has the ability to be just loud. People may use Christianity to vote against abortion, but their rights are not limited if others abort. They still have the right not to abort their own child. With the issue of gay marriage, any church can deny a gay marriage, but as nation where everybody has the same rights, not the majority having more rights than the minority, homosexual relationships should be allowed to exist. That doesn't mean Christians have to marry the same sex or have gay marriages within their own churches, it just means that in a diverse nation, everyone recognizes the right to believe anything.
 

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MikeyC said:
Yeah, the Christian faith has definitely had more impact than any other religion. However, just because a majority rules, doesn't mean they can limit the rights of the minority.
Strictly speaking, they can if they want. You mean that they “shouldn’t”. I agree that they shouldn’t, but I also believe that they shouldn’t have to curb their own rights either.
MikeyC said:
Christians can vote with faith as their guide, but when their faith begins to inhibit the rights of others, our nation ceases to be great.
Why? Is this just because of something inherent in Christianity? (you single one faith out)
MikeyC said:
I believe our nation to be great because we the people can have a powerful voice, but the little guy has a voice to, and his voice has the ability to be just loud. People may use Christianity to vote against abortion, but their rights are not limited if others abort.
Why not? So far you’ve made a whole lot of unsupported statements
MikeyC said:
They still have the right not to abort their own child. With the issue of gay marriage, any church can deny a gay marriage, but as nation where everybody has the same rights, not the majority having more rights than the minority, homosexual relationships should be allowed to exist. That doesn't mean Christians have to marry the same sex or have gay marriages within their own churches, it just means that in a diverse nation, everyone recognizes the right to believe anything.
So now you’re arguing for rights of belief/lifestyle in an absolute sense.

If I wanted to practice as a Hindu, including the right of ‘suttee’ should I be allowed to? Suttee is where they throw a widow onto the funeral pyre of her late husband, so she can accompany him into the after-life.

What about female genital mutilation done for belief?

What about bestiality? If someone wants to shack-up with a sheep, should he be allowed to?
 

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I don't think for the most part, giving others their rights means Christians have to curb their own rights. When has this or how could this happen? It's most important to try to guarantee as many rights to as many people that don't inhibit that beliefs of others. I singled Christianity out because Christianity is obviously the dominant religion in this country. I don't mean our nation is great in spite of Christianity, in fact, Christianity has for the most part made it more great. When people use Christianity to try to limit the rights of homosexuals and when a Christian majority is allowed to rule others beliefs like that, our nation ceases to be great. I mean that because our nation should guarantee the same rights to all people. I don't see how allowing a woman to abort her child is hurting the right of a Christian woman to not abort her child. Or how a woman aborting her own child is somehow affecting the Christian who is against abortion in any way. The practice of sati is illegal because suicide is illegal. People not of the Hindu faith would also have to be guaranteed this same right. This gets very complicated. I'm not sure how we can stop female genital mutilation. Self-mutilation is illegal (I think) because it unnecessarily creates grave health risks (Most likely that's the reason I'm assumin). Bestiality is illegal because there is no proof that it's consentual.
 

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Montalban said:
What is the Muslim impact on the USA? What laws has it inspired?

Islam and Judaism have had a major effect on the way we view social rights ever since immigration policies first began. Without the increased diversity that the spread of Islam and Judaism brings, we would be living in the theocracy that so many here advocate. Additionally, Islam has been the center of civil rights disputes and constant movements for equal rights. It's like trying to claim the impacts of African-Americans on the United States. Just because the "founding fathers" weren't all African-American... or in this case, Muslim, doesn't mean these groups haven't had a prominent impact on the country.

Montalban said:
Strictly speaking, they can if they want. You mean that they “shouldn’t”. I agree that they shouldn’t, but I also believe that they shouldn’t have to curb their own rights either.

Incorrect... these are what legalities like filibusters and pocket vetoes are for... they prevent the majority from simply crushing the minority out of existence.
 

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Montalban said:
Why? Why should the majority need to curb their beliefs to suit a minority?

In a democracy, it's usually viewed as the antithesis of fairness to have a minority dictate agenda to the majority.


I see no reason for anyone to curb their beliefs, even if I disagree with them. my point is instead that we are evolving as a people. individuals breaking from long held traditions and views. Where all men are created evil... no mater what manner you believe your creation came about. And as such we must respect each other as sentient beings and not force our beliefs on others . If for no other reason then so that our children have that freedom.

Freedom, no mater what else we may think of those who penned the base of our goverment, is the one thing that all agreed was essential. From a time when it was almost blasmey to disrespect a monarch let alone rise against we find the roots of our way of life. We grew.. gained knowledge and changed.

The one constant thru the years has been change.

Religion had it's hey day, but it is at it's very core based on ignorance. Man has always asked questions about his environment, a commodity that some took advantage of. They grew fat off power by having others believe they were special in the light of some divine being or other. From basic shamans who enjoyed the respects of their tribes. To the high temples in southern america where kings where divine themselves. To the emporer of china who made the very sun rise.

But this is the age of information and thru it knowledge . Bit by bit we understand our world better. Bit by bit the easy answears presented by religion become questioned , debated , then left behind. None now wish to die in battle to get to valhaula. The sun will rise without head to mortal will. No longer is it neccesary to have a young women sacrifice their virginity so that there will be an ample harvest. The sun is not the center of the universe.

change is inevitable

It won't come today.. it won't come tommorrow.. it will come for our children and our children's children... I mean for them to have the freedom to enjoy that change even as their morality drifts from mine. Because time has show that good and evil are supjective, but the common will of the people is to do what they feel is right... Even if they can't agree on what is right.... Very few do evil for evil sake.

And their will be those who fight change tooth and nail.. they will win some batles. They will lose some. And they will suffer the butterfly effect when they do.

Religious groups wish to regulate what people believe and how they behave , otherwise they lose power. They see this and fear change as sin and a curruption of morality.

The majority still wants an easy answear.. but then again the majoity once thought the world was flat.
 

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Montalban said:
What is the Muslim impact on the USA? What laws has it inspired?
jpwright said:
Islam and Judaism have had a major effect on the way we view social rights ever since immigration policies first began. Without the increased diversity that the spread of Islam and Judaism brings, we would be living in the theocracy that so many here advocate. Additionally, Islam has been the center of civil rights disputes and constant movements for equal rights. It's like trying to claim the impacts of African-Americans on the United States. Just because the "founding fathers" weren't all African-American... or in this case, Muslim, doesn't mean these groups haven't had a prominent impact on the country.
Maybe you believe that the African-Americans maintained Islamic beliefs into the present, and that Black Muslims are by and large a product of that; when in fact they're not; and in fact are oft despised by many Muslims because they are the invention of "Prophet" Elijah Muhammed, who claims to be euqal to Muhammed (an un-Islamic stance to make).

But leaving that aside, what specifically have Muslims contributed to the formation of the USA? Civil rights, I would have believed were issues before Muslims arrived in any great numbers.
Montalban said:
Strictly speaking, they can if they want. You mean that they “shouldn’t”. I agree that they shouldn’t, but I also believe that they shouldn’t have to curb their own rights either.

jpwright said:
Incorrect... these are what legalities like filibusters and pocket vetoes are for... they prevent the majority from simply crushing the minority out of existence.
So are you saying the minority already has a voice?
 

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Montalban said:
Why? Why should the majority need to curb their beliefs to suit a minority?

In a democracy, it's usually viewed as the antithesis of fairness to have a minority dictate agenda to the majority.

dogger807 said:
I see no reason for anyone to curb their beliefs, even if I disagree with them. my point is instead that we are evolving as a people. individuals breaking from long held traditions and views. Where all men are created evil... no mater what manner you believe your creation came about. And as such we must respect each other as sentient beings and not force our beliefs on others . If for no other reason then so that our children have that freedom.
What if it is my belief to believe that you should be forcibly changed into one like me? Am I free to express my desire to forcibly convert you? Where would you stop me? Why don't I have the right to practice this belief?
dogger807 said:
Freedom, no mater what else we may think of those who penned the base of our government, is the one thing that all agreed was essential. From a time when it was almost blasmey to disrespect a monarch let alone rise against we find the roots of our way of life. We grew.. gained knowledge and changed.
Freedom as an absolute is a silly notion. Nations need citizens to be obligated to do certain things; obey laws; pay taxes, etc.
dogger807 said:
The one constant thru the years has been change.
I, for instance follow the Orthodox faith. We keep the same teaching we had 2,000 years ago. Truths don't change. Your perception of the truth might.
dogger807 said:
Religion had it's hey day, but it is at it's very core based on ignorance. Man has always asked questions about his environment, a commodity that some took advantage of. They grew fat off power by having others believe they were special in the light of some divine being or other. From basic shamans who enjoyed the respects of their tribes. To the high temples in southern America where kings where divine themselves. To the emporer of china who made the very sun rise.
That's an incredibly ill-informed thing to say. Western Europe's Christianity drove scientific inquiry as people sought to understand the universe God had created.
dogger807 said:
But this is the age of information and thru it knowledge . Bit by bit we understand our world better. Bit by bit the easy answers presented by religion become questioned , debated , then left behind. None now wish to die in battle to get to valhaula. The sun will rise without head to mortal will. No longer is it necessary to have a young women sacrifice their virginity so that there will be an ample harvest.
Really? So science can answer all of life's questions? Is science the best form of finding the truth?
dogger807 said:
The sun is not the center of the universe.
Huh?
dogger807 said:
change is inevitable
Except from Coke machines.
dogger807 said:
It won't come today.. it won't come tomorrow.. it will come for our children and our children's children... I mean for them to have the freedom to enjoy that change even as their morality drifts from mine. Because time has show that good and evil are subjective, but the common will of the people is to do what they feel is right... Even if they can't agree on what is right.... Very few do evil for evil sake.
Great, you have a faith in science.
dogger807 said:
And their will be those who fight change tooth and nail.. they will win some battles. They will lose some. And they will suffer the butterfly effect when they do.[./quote]
With a touch of millenarianism thrown in!
dogger807 said:
Religious groups wish to regulate what people believe and how they behave , otherwise they lose power. They see this and fear change as sin and a corruption of morality.
Straw-man.
dogger807 said:
The majority still wants an easy answer.. but then again the majority once thought the world was flat.
It is true that some scientists speculated that the world was flat. They believed it so, because it was the best fit for the world as they observed it.
 

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Science is the best way in finding truth. That's my belief. I agree with galenrox that you cross a line when you support a belief to forcibly convert people. Apparently you would only care about your own freedoms and not respect the rights of other citizens who are just as equal. To quote Animal Farm, "All animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others."
 

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After reading these posts it is apparent that there is a definite line between
RELIGION and SPIRITUALITY. A person can be spiritual and not be religious and can be religious and not have spirituality.

If we "owe" any one person(s) for our democratic nation it is the Greeks.
 

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galenrox said:
Yeah, you have the right to believe people should be forceably coverted, although that makes you, in my opinion, a heretic. What you don't have is the right to actually do it, because the second you try to impune on others's rights you've crossed into an area where you have no right to be.
So therefore you can see the potential for curbing someone’s rights. Rights to belief and practice aren’t absolute.
galenrox said:
And it is heresy. Jesus never did that, and everyone who has tried to previously has been an unrepentant sinner (Spanish Inquisition anyone?), because God gave us free will to find our own path. Taking away that free will would be a testament that you hate what was made in God's own image, and thus you hate God.
You seem to mistake me talking hypothetically for what I actually believe in. I merely used an example to illustrate a point.

The British when they took over large parts of India outlawed Suttee; the practice of throwing a widow on a funeral pyre. They did this because that practice did not sit well with their own sensibilities. The imposition of their values upon another society is to me a clear example of where this is a ‘good’ thing... imposing values
 

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Montalban said:
Freedom as an absolute is a silly notion. Nations need citizens to be obligated to do certain things; obey laws; pay taxes, etc.

absolute compliance to laws is also a silly notion. In fact absolute anything is detrimental.

Montalban said:
I, for instance follow the Orthodox faith. We keep the same teaching we had 2,000 years ago. Truths don't change. Your perception of the truth might.

This depends on what you define as truth. You always come up with a clever example whenever I make the mistake of making an absolute statement.. I'll spare you the same.

Montalban said:
That's an incredibly ill-informed thing to say. Western Europe's Christianity drove scientific inquiry as people sought to understand the universe God had created.

Something I'm sure they regret. None the less I stand by my statement here. Within large organizations there are always idealist

Montalban said:
Really? So science can answer all of life's questions? Is science the best form of finding the truth?

I thought I made it clear that I didn't think all answears were known, through science or religion. Science just doesn't make the claim to know all.

Montalban said:

oK I goofed.. that should be "the Earth is at the center of the universe." Kinda killed the effect didn't I.

Montalban said:
Except from Coke machines.

LoL I love that one.

Great, you have a faith in science.

hmm faith 1) Confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing.
2) Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence.

by which definition do you refer to me?

Straw-man.

? OK another absolute statement . But in this case I wasn't referring to the mass of people who believe in a religion. More so I was referring to the reasons behind why religions work the way they do. I didn't mean it as pastor Joe thinking "hmm I better make sure these people believe this or I don't get paid."

Don't get me wrong... I respect your point of view, even if I don't agree with you on several key points. If you feel I'm ignoring your stance and misstating it it please let me know. I'd rather concede a point than win through a misconception.
 

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MikeyC said:
Science is the best way in finding truth. "

Hahahahaha more unsubstantiated claims . . . . you are so funny. . . .

John 14: 6 Jesus saith to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.
 

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Shamgar said:
Hahahahaha more unsubstantiated claims . . . . you are so funny. . . .

John 14: 6 Jesus saith to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.
Scientific evidence is more substantiated than the Bible. Bible truth is based on faith, scientific truth is based on reason.


sub·stan·ti·ate (sb-stnsh-t)
tr.v. sub·stan·ti·at·ed, sub·stan·ti·at·ing, sub·stan·ti·ates
1. To support with proof or evidence

Much of the "truth" of the Bible is based on faith. Faith that Jesus and his disciples really did hear the word of God. I hold these people's account that they heard God no more than the person in Alabama who claims to have seen a UFO.

faith Pronunciation Key (fth)
n.

2. Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence.

Definitions courtesy dictionary.com
 

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Fantasea said:
I appreciate all of the effort you put into your response; however, it does not respond to the challenge.

What I'm asking is whether someone is able to cite some laws which are NOT based upon the tenets of ONE of the ten commandments.


Is not the first commandment: "There shall be no other God but me?"

If you bothered to understand what both the previous responces to your question were saying, you'd realize that infact BOTH respondents did answer your challenge and they met it quite well.

Learn when you have been defeated and drop it accordingly.
 

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JustineCredible said:
Originally Posted by Fantasea
I appreciate all of the effort you put into your response; however, it does not respond to the challenge.

What I'm asking is whether someone is able to cite some laws which are NOT based upon the tenets of ONE of the ten commandments.

Is not the first commandment: "There shall be no other God but me?"

If you bothered to understand what both the previous responces to your question were saying, you'd realize that infact BOTH respondents did answer your challenge and they met it quite well.

Learn when you have been defeated and drop it accordingly.
You are reading my challenge backwards.

A correct response must cite a law. You have incorrectly cited a commandment.

Care to try again?
 

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Montalban said:
What if it is my belief to believe that you should be forcibly changed into one like me? Am I free to express my desire to forcibly convert you? Where would you stop me? Why don't I have the right to practice this belief?

Is this your belief?
 

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In regard to the characteristics of the people, notice that what is stressed here is the lack of reasons for disagreement rather than the virtue of being English and speaking English and so forth. Jay would doubtless have written much the same had the country's inhabitants been Turks, except that the proposed form of the new government would certainly have been different. The key words here are same and similar. Therefore when Jay writes of the people professing the same religion he is not expressing any value judgement on religion, its necessity or irrelevance. He is merely eliminating it as a source of contention. There is nothing here to indicate that he thinks America should be governed by Christian principles.
:drink[/QUOTE]



While you present an interesting, and well spoken point of view, I feel your scope of your assertion is rather narrow. While I will concede to you the fact that our nation was not formed with intent to specify Christian religion as dominant, there is plenty of evidence to support the idea that we are a nation founded out of Christian ideals, and with intent to build the nation on a foundation of religious principles.

Take Patrick Henry for example, when he said, "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here."

Here, Patrick Henry emphasizes the fact that although all religions have been afforded asylum to worship, it is the Christian principles and religious teachings of Jesus that provide for the foundation of the Rule of Law.

John Adams was quite fond of making religious inferences when both speaking and writing. “Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand.”

With this quote, again we see that it was not only the founder’s intent to create a nation based in religious principles, but that they felt is was wholly necessary to do so in order to ensure the success of the nation. This is evidenced again by James Madison, "Religion [is] the basis and Foundation of Government." I could continue but will allow this as sufficient evidence with which to make my case.
 

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dogger807 said:
absolute compliance to laws is also a silly notion. In fact absolute anything is detrimental.
Paradox:
You have determined something as absolute, that you shouldn't make any absolute determinations
 

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dogger807 said:
This depends on what you define as truth. You always come up with a clever example whenever I make the mistake of making an absolute statement.. I'll spare you the same.

No problemo... I don't mind making a statement about an absolute truth.

God said of Himself "I Am".

I believe that absolutely. I believe it to be absolutely true.

If you want me to 'proove' that it is true, that's a different issue.* :)



*For which we'd have to define what constitutes proof etc, and will lead me into boring you with semantics
 

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PopeyeAtheist said:
Montalban said:
What if it is my belief to believe that you should be forcibly changed into one like me? Am I free to express my desire to forcibly convert you? Where would you stop me? Why don't I have the right to practice this belief?

Is this your belief?

No. I believe I stated it was a hypothetical, in order to demonstrate the problems with the other person's statement of absolute value on freedom of expression/belief.

I could use real examples such as those who follow Nazi ideology etc. But again, no it was just a debating tool.

I think I also mentioned how the British imposed their Judeo-Christian ethics on India in order to attempt to stop Suttee (the act of throwing a widow onto the funeral pyre of her late husband). Here is a clear case, I believe of where it is best to curtail an expression of a belief.
 

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Fantasea said:
You are reading my challenge backwards.

A correct response must cite a law. You have incorrectly cited a commandment.

Care to try again?

No actually, I would not. I was not responding to your supposed challenge at all. I was responding to the fact that two OTHER POSTERS had responded appropriately but you were so caught up in your own smugness that you couldn't bother to realize you had been defeated. :shoot

:2funny:

You just took the bate, swallowed it hook, line and sinker!

You posted a challenge, two posters (OTHER THAN MYSELF) responded and burst your bubble. You still refused to admit defeat so I had to point out to you just exactly how you had been and you came back at me incorrectly (but oh, so predictably) assuming I was responding to your original challenge.
I was not. Time for you to bend over Darlin', you've just been Spanked!

:spank:
 

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Montalban said:
No. I believe I stated it was a hypothetical, in order to demonstrate the problems with the other person's statement of absolute value on freedom of expression/belief.

Ok, sorry.
 
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