Can We Come Together?

October 6, 2017

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

October 3, 2017

 

 

If you have a problem with someone don’t take it out on everybody else.  How do problems get solved, by an open an honest debate. Unfortunately it appears many have lost the art of debating.

Debating is an age-old way of discovering facts and persuading others, it is an argument with rules. Debating provides practice in developing sound and logical arguments.

It is said that the pen is mightier than the sword; for the most part this is true when we look at some of history’s greatest speakers and writers using their powers of language to persuade. Words change opinions, words shape the course of history and when the swords have been put down, it is words that form countries from the ashes of the bloodshed of the old.

The man who arguably began the concept of the debate, Plato was a fine writer and philosopher and makes up a trio with Aristotle and Socrates. Many of his ‘dialogues’ are in written form and address specific issues brought up with other Greek thinkers. He is most famous for the Gorgias Dialogue in which he seeks the true definition of rhetoric one of the key principles in the debating process. He also critiques Athenian oratory in the text. (1)

You probably have heard of the Lincoln – Douglas Debates which many say Lincoln won. Lincoln did not win that election however he was later considered for the Republican nomination for president where he was elected twice because of the debates.

Modern debates have made and broken candidates. It has been said that Nixon lost the election in 1960 because Kennedy was better in the debates.

Politics was not as contentious then as it is today. Some people today have their minds made up and they don’t want to be confused with the facts.  It used to be considered an honor and a pleasure to serve in public office. Many today believe they have a right to be in a certain office and throw tantrums when their coronation is canceled by the employer, We The People.

Here is an example of a lighter moment that helped win the debate and the office:

“I will not make age an issue of this campaign. I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and inexperience,” Ronald Reagan quipped during the 1984 presidential debates when asked if, at 73, he is too old to be President. The line — a classic example of Reagan’s sense of humor — even solicited a laugh from Democratic opponent Walter Mondale. (The Republican actor-turned-statesman ended up winning by a landslide).

Once upon a time high schools and college debate teams were very popular. For awhile debate teams were cut from official activities. Recently debate teams have been returning. The lack of debating skills learned and honed on debate teams or otherwise has manifested itself in many of today’s contentious business, public, and political meetings. Yelling, violent protests, and demeaning statements have become common ways today to ‘persuade’ others. These people have not learned that you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar.

The yelling, violent protests and demeaning statement can cause or exacerbate fear, anxiety, PTSD, physical injury, and do suppress free speech. That is not the USA I grew up in and should not be accepted as a new normal.

Everyone has an opinion even if it does not agree with yours. Can you see theirs? In a debate you just might find some common thread which could begin the process of coming together on some issue or issues.

The USA I grew up in the teacher read the 100 Psalm in the classroom everyday in the beginning of each school day.

“ Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.

2 Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

3 Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

5 For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.”

 

Can we come together?

 

Yes, if more people learn and practice the art of debating we can. Will you do your part?

 

Come Together – John Lennon/The Beatles (Live In New York City)

 

 

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ)

www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 

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References

 

(1) http://infomory.com/famous/famous-debaters-in-history/

 

 

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Doing Some House Cleaning…

September 1, 2017

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

August 29, 2017

 

Every so often there comes a time when a reevaluation is needed. Whether you are in charge of a household, a multinational corporation or public official results matter.

It is true that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. It is also true that a few motivated people working together can accomplish more than a large group working as individuals. I may not be the best speller, but I am certain there is no ‘I’ in team.

In a household someone has to make sure the chores are done, the food is prepared, the laundry is done, and the yard is clean, just to name a few things that help a household member function.

Multinational corporations have many layers of management that have to be informed of and carryout the approved plan of action. Management is judged on their performance as well as how much they brought in or saved the corporation. Corporations exist to make money, if they consistently loose money or take a huge financial loss they could go bankrupt. Some corporations go bankrupt and reopen the next day in a new name with a clean slate. Employees of multinational corporations typically don’t have contracts binding them to their jobs making their tenure subject to the approval of management.

Multinational corporations have to answer to their shareholders, especially those holding large numbers of shares. Large shareholders often have influence over the direction of corporations.

Elected officials have to answer to the voters. Unfortunately those who seek public office often do not have sufficient funds to pay for the campaign process to get elected.  In reality those who seek public office either borrow money or seek donations to pay for the campaign process. There are many lobbyist who are eager to arrange for donations for the candidate with the idea that candidate, once in office, will vote the way the lobbyist wants. The candidate gets donations to pay for the campaign process and the lobbyist buys a vote for his client. The purchased votes can cause the public official to vote against those to whom he or she is supposed to be beholden…the voters.

The purchased votes often make it appear that there is only one party in Congress, some call it a UniParty, and some call it the Establishment.

The good news not all elected officials are bought and paid for. Not all elected officials are infected with the group think disease.

Some could think the elected officials infected with the group think disease have more than one personality (one for the voters and one for their donors) or they could appear to have Borderline Personality Disorder.

See if these symptoms match any current public officials or groups in the news:

“Everyone has problems with emotions or behaviors sometimes. But if you have borderline personality disorder, the problems are severe, repeat over a long time, and disrupt your life. The most common symptoms include:

  • Intense emotions and mood swings.
  • Harmful, impulsive behaviors. These may include things like substance abusebinge eating, out-of-control spending, risky sexual behavior, and reckless driving.
  • Relationship problems. You may see others as either “good” or “bad” and may shift from one view to the other suddenly, for minor reasons. This can make relationships very difficult.
  • Low self-worth.
  • A frantic fear of being left alone (abandoned). This fear may lead to frantic attempts to hold on to those around you. Or it may cause you to reject others before they can reject you.
  • Aggressive behavior.

Other symptoms may include:

  • Feeling empty inside.
  • Problems with anger, such as violent temper tantrums.
  • Hurting yourself, such as cutting or burning yourself.
  • Suicide attempts and suicidal thoughts.
  • Times when you feel paranoid or lose a sense of reality (psychosis).

It’s easy to confuse this disorder with other mental illnesses. And they may overlap. So if you think that you or someone you know may have borderline personality disorder, see a doctor. Don’t try to diagnose yourself.” (1)

Some groups or elected officials infected with the group think disease have become violent and threatening of late when someone disagrees with them making them a danger to themselves or to those around them. Behavior which makes them a danger to themselves or to those around them could be a reason to have them properly evaluated.

One of the foundations of the USA is the First Amendment which guarantees USA Citizens the Right to Disagree. Being assaulted for disagreeing with the speaker is not protected by the First Amendment.

There are elected officials who have shown very good leadership ability in bringing people together to accomplish the missions. Then there are others who feel if they harass and harangue they can bully people into carrying out their agenda. Perhaps they have not learned that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

Disasters can bring a good insight into an elected official’s leadership ability. In May of 2013 Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin showed her leadership ability when she brought many people together to recover after some pretty devastating tornados within her state. Churches provided much needed places in the communities for communication,  rest, shelter and supplies.  No one was waiting for or looking for Air Force One  (2)

Today we learned at a major briefing that the Texas Governor Greg Abbott has been working and coordinating with the President and his cabinet for more than a week to assist victims of Harvey. The President brought three cabinet members and their chief assistants to Texas with him. (3)  Recovery should begin faster than with Hurricanes Katrina or Sandy as Oklahoma and Texas Governors and the President show a leadership style that is more conducive to accomplishing the mission and putting the people first. Again, churches are providing much needed places in the communities for communication, rest, shelter and supplies.

There was a TV crew shooting live when it came across a two men who needed a rescue. The National Guard helicopter had issues because of the power lines. The second man who lost everything because of Harvey and did not know the first man got in trouble in the fast moving water when he tried to rescue the first man. The TV crew asked the viewers if anyone nearby had a boat to rescue the two men. Within minutes several people with boats showed up and the two men were rescued. (3)

The spirit of Harvey’s victims reminded me of the Katrina victims in the way they look out for and help neighbors and strangers. The aerial view of Harvey’s damage looked very much like the aerial view of Katrina’s damage as I flew in as a volunteer. (4)

In times of need, such as after natural disasters be it hurricanes, tornadoes, or massive snow blizzards I have witnessed neighbors and strangers pull together and help each other out. Yes, there are those who will be antisocial and take advantage of those in need and they can be dealt with.

Groups or elected officials infected with the group think disease whether or not they have become violent and threatening or condone those who have become violent or threatening need to be dealt with. Elected officials can be removed, arrested, or voted out depending on their level of involvement.

If more people thought and acted like the Good Samaritan and not like those who passed the injured man the road we’d live in a much nicer world. Yes, one person can make a difference. What difference will you make today?

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 

(1) http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/tc/borderline-personality-disorder-topic-overview#1

(2) https://reclaimourrepublic.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/video-tornadoes-help-available-prayers-answered-womans-dog-emerges-from-rubble-during-tv-interview/

(3) https://reclaimourrepublic.wordpress.com/2017/08/30/video-ready-for-onslaught-45-churches-come-together-dallas-opens-6-shelters-convention-center-for-evacuees

(4) https://preacher01704.wordpress.com/2015/10/02/where-is-your-house-built/


 


 

Military vets bring specialized skillset to Harvey response


Texas father describes mandatory evacuation with five kids


 

 


Strings On Your Finger

June 2, 2017

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

May 29, 2017

 

Ever forgotten anything? Ever tied a string on your finger to be reminded of something? If you had multiple things to remember, would you recall which string was for which?

Have you tried journaling? Yes, you say, and it went well for a while, then you got too busy and didn’t have time to write, and write, and write. Well, the great thing about journaling is that you write as you will, jotting down what seems important to you at that time.

Although facts don’t change over time, people’s recollection, perception or perspective of the facts may change.

Over the ages people wrote in words or created graphics about events which were of historic significance to them.

History is important. People who don’t know history are often bound to repeat it.

Doctors need to know about your medical history, and sometimes your family’s medical history, in order to have a better understanding and an idea of what to look for and learn of any adverse reactions to treatments or medications you might experience.   You certainly would not want to be treated for appendicitis if yours had already been removed. You also would not want to be treated for depression when indicators suggest that he should be addressing a brain tumor.

Court hearings normally have either a voice recording or a written transcript of the conversation to keep accurate records. The recordings or written transcript are often referred to when a ruling is being written. The written rulings are recorded in official court records and often times published.  There are mechanisms in place to correct errors.  People rely on the written rulings in settling disputes. There are mechanisms in place to appeal the rulings if one party is not satisfied. Sometimes outcomes change as the result of appeals.

No matter how much some people don’t like a historical event, the event will not change. People’s reaction to the historical event can change.

People are born and that historical event is recorded.

People die and that historical event is recorded.

Many events in the life of that person between their birth and death are memorialized by various records kept by the government or other entities.

We know a lot about Rev Billy Graham and Adolph Hitler because of a large volume of records and recordings which were made and preserved.  There may be a dispute about certain specific events concerning either of these public figures. I would think people would generally think that Rev Billy Graham did a lot of good things for a lot of people. Whereas, I suspect that would not be the consensus about Adolph Hitler who caused the deaths of many innocent people.

Some people seem to have the idea that historical events can be erased. Perhaps the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life”, which airs around Christmas time, is reality to those who think they can erase historical events.

There are some who may not like an outcome of a historical event and try to fight the battles over again. Perhaps they would have more success by inventing a time machine which would allow them to revisit a specific moment to alter events.

Some would like to go back and remove a life changing car accident from history, they can’t. The way you deal with it can be changed.

Some would like to change the results of an election, they can’t. The way you deal with it can be changed.

Some would like to change the historical event of the American Civil War, a war between the slave owning Democrats and the anti-slavery Republicans, they can’t.

Removing the string from your finger, shredding a written record, or tearing down a monument will not change the historical events.

Monuments are reminders of good and bad times. People don’t always have the best memory, which is why we may need a string on our finger, a monument, or a trophy for an accomplishment we achieved. The string, monument, or trophy can be used to start or continue a conversation on how not to repeat the mistakes of the past, how we can do better this time….

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 


Old Fashion Still Good

April 7, 2017

By Rev. Paul N. Papas II

April 3, 2017

 

Every time I think that I have heard it all, there comes another one. Now it appears that people, who are hell-bent on indoctrinating everyone that up is down, and down is up, are upset with the Vice President. Why, because he will not have dinner with a women alone who is not his wife and without his wife being present. Nor will he go to an event that serves booze, if his wife is absent. To the Vice President and every other man who thinks the same way, I say BRAVO!

Ever since God and prayer were kicked out of schools we have witnessed, at an ever increasing rapid rate, the decline of the family. With the decline of the family came a myriad of social, political, and metal health issues.

Call me old fashioned, or politically incorrect, if you’d like. I was taught men should stand up when a woman entered the room and hold the door for women and elders. Today there are those who would attach a negative connotation to these actions. To those I say “it is mind over matter”. I don’t mind, and they don’t matter.

If you choose to stand in quicksand rather than on a rock, don’t be surprised when you’re soon buried under a lot of dirt.

By refusing to have dinner with a woman without his wife being present and not going to an event that serves booze if his wife is absent, a husband communicates his dedication to his wife alone, and avoids any appearance of evil. The husband’s dedication to his wife prevents inappropriate  actions on his part that could lead to the break up of his family. This can also be said for a wife’s dedication to her husband in the same manner.  Family break ups, which lead to a divorce, are only good for making divorce lawyers rich.

Family break ups often lead to some level of short or long term emotional, mental health and trust issues.

Family break ups can be also caused by, or lead to abuse issues.  Abuse issues often lead to some level of short or long term emotional, mental health and trust issues. Abusive relationships, or encounters, affect a lot more than the abuser and the abused. People who have been abused often become abusers.

Abuse can be caused by or lead to involvement with the multi-billion dollar porn industry. Pornography objectifies and dehumanizes men and women. Pornography destroys relationships as it creates a false understanding of interpersonal relationships.

The multi billion dollar pornography industry is tied to the multi billion dollar sex trafficking industry which seeks to satisfy the unrealistic needs created and supported by the pornography industry.

A husband who refuses to dine with a women without his wife present and refuses to attend a function that serves booze without his wife present guards against allowing any temptation to break his wedding vows. The same can be said for a wife who refuses to dine with a man without her husband present or attend a function that serves booze without her husband present. Couples who guard against temptation are less likely to end up in divorce court and all the tragedies of breaking up a family.

Couples who are dedicated to each other will work through issues either by themselves or with the help of another person, as the need may arise.

I applaud those couples who show this type of dedication to each other, gentlemen who hold doors for ladies, stands when a lady enters the room, and helps her with her chair as she is seated.   Call me old fashioned. Old fashioned is still good.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ), and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org


A Time For Sharing And Giving

December 2, 2016

Thankful count the ways
By Rev Paul N. Papas II
November 29, 2016

We can finally breathe. After eight years of being insulted, deceived, mistreated, unjustly reviled and maligned the Eagle will soon be able to soar to new heights again. The abuser is moving out, but somehow I think he’ll be lurking around corners waiting for an opportunity to pounce.

Most of the abuse has been psychological with wounds that may not be visible to the naked eye. Just like in a home, victims of psychological abuse can be of any age or gender. This form of abuse is often difficult to prove. It includes threatening the victim with violence, harassing them at home, outside the home, at school or work, denying the victim access to others (e.g., refusing to allow the victim to see friends, preventing use of the telephone), confining the victim to home or area, destroying or taking the victim’s property. Many abusers will arrange it so that his victims are totally dependent upon the abuser, making it very difficult for the victim to move out. Many abusers will arrange it so that all money and services are controlled by the abuser.

After eight years of abuse fewer people have their homes, their health, or jobs. Black Friday was more like Bleak Friday.

After eight years of abuse the number of suicides is up. Twenty two Veterans a day alone are completing suicide.

We can finally breathe again. The new guy loves the Eagle and is preparing to restore the Eagle’s habitat and make the Eagle great again. The new guy is going about the business of building bridges with various people, some of whom bitterly opposed him. The new guy is refusing his salary and is working for free. The new guy is leading by example, giving and sharing.

We may not have much, but we can dust ourselves off and work with our neighbors to restore the Eagle’s habitat. The task is yuge and may appear to be overwhelming for some. You’ll be surprised how much we can accomplish and how quickly we can accomplish it by working together.

Sometimes overwhelming feelings rise up within us or we face difficult experiences: relational conflict, chronic illness, failure, job loss, and rejection to name a few. When a big problem presents itself, it is tempting to curl into a ball and allow worry to consume us mentally and physically. The best way to overcome the overwhelming tasks is to start working on completing the task. Instead of focusing on the mountain before you focus on pebbles in front of you. As you begin working on the task you will find that you begin to heal from the eight years of abuse.

Christmas is fast coming upon us. May I suggest a gift that will keep on giving, the gift of self sharing time with your neighbors to pitch in to restore the Eagle’s habitat? The life you save may be your own.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.famlyrenewalcenteraz.org


America’s Choosing and PTSD

November 4, 2016

ptsd-one-piece

By Rev Paul N. Papas II
November 1, 2016

Certainly we all make choices every day, some have more consequences than others. In a few days America will make a choice that will affect which direction the country will take, whether or not it will remain a Republic, and whether it will recover from PTSD.

Having experienced a wide variety of campaigns and presidents beginning with Dwight David Eisenhower (Ike) this current presidential election seems to have created the most interest by voters. This one has also created the most PTSD.

Looking back two previous presidential campaigns come to mind as we head to the polls: 1964 Goldwater v Johnson (LBJ) and 1980 Reagan v Carter. In 1964 before instant news or communications Johnson told the most fanciful lies about Goldwater, painting Goldwater as fruitcake. Goldwater had written a book about what his presidency would look like. Johnson kept saying Goldwater was crazy. Johnson had the advantage of being the sitting president and the press at his beckon call. Goldwater often warned us about the Globalist. An actor, named Ronald Reagan, came to Goldwater’s defense and presented what was then a rare Coast to Coast Broadcast, in a Time of Choosing.

“A Time for Choosing” by Ronald Reagan

After LBJ was reelected he did much of what Goldwater had outlined in his book and had ridiculed Goldwater for.

Goldwater and Reagan were not the only voices of warning, as you can watch below both Eisenhower and Kennedy also warned us.

Eisenhower warns us of the military industrial complex.

JFK Secret Societies Speech

The 1980 presidential campaign had many twists and turns, perhaps not as many the current 2016 presidential campaign. A large group of professional politicians strongly opposed Ronald Reagan. They said of Reagan he is too…old, etc. Reagan appeared to be behind in the polls then won in a landslide.

I see the 1964 and 1980 presidential campaigns of LBJ and Jimmy Carter as the basis of the professional politician running for president.

In contrast I see a bit of Ike, JFK, and Reagan in the businessman running for president.

JFK in his Secret Societies speech could have been talking to us today. JFK was actually talking about current events of the cold war and how nontraditional enemies were gaining information on how the US was battling the Cold War. In this speech JFK points out “the need for far greater “official” secrecy”…as well as “the need for a far greater public information”.

JFK admits “I have no easy answer to the dilemma that I have posed,” but also states, “and would not seek to impose it if I had one.” This a major difference from where most of today’s professional politicians stand.

There has been so much information, which is mostly propaganda, provided in this presidential election that many may feel they have been traumatized by professional politicians who feel entitled to be elected. The overload of propaganda has traumatized many in this nation, giving them PTSD. This PTSD can cause problems with trust, closeness, communication, and problem solving. These problems may affect the way the survivor acts with others. In turn, the way a loved one responds to him or her affects the trauma survivor. A circular pattern can develop that may sometimes harm relationships.

What It Feels Like To Have PTSD

I think is it time for America to choose to end the professional politicians’ dependence on our wallets and have them go to work for a living. Let the nation recover from the PTSD caused by the professional politicians.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.famlyrenewalcenteraz.org

ptsd-notallwounds
ptsd-soldier-consoles-peer


Is It Supposed To Be Fair?

October 7, 2016

Same Yesterday he13 8-2 Kristiann1
By Rev Paul N. Papas II
October 4, 2016

I hear a lot of talk lately about how many things are not fair. Who said life was fair?

Whose standard would be used in order for something to be judged fair? The mere fact that a judgment must be made insures a standard must be used to measure against. A judgment of competing ideas or goal requires that a determination be made as to which idea or portion of an idea is better than another. When a judgment is made it also means one idea or part of an idea was discriminated against. Judgments such as this have been made by each of us for many years, such as what we wear and how we wear it. The clothes we chose not to wear could complain it is not fair that they were not chosen and that they were discriminated against.

A house must be built upon a good foundation to withstand whatever weather throws at it such as wind, rain, snow, and water run-off.

Property lines must be determined from known benchmarks in order to be accurate and fair for property owners.

Building trades use a level and plumb to insure the house is level and vertically straight.

To properly build a house certain standards must be used, for example a foot must always contain twelve inches. An eight foot wall must use lumber that has eight feet with each foot containing twelve inches. Should lumber be used with ten inches in each foot the wall would be too short jeopardizing the integrity and stability of the house.

For some reason in recent years the idea that things must always be fair has become popular. Someone makes a judgment that something is unfair and the berating begins. The berating inevitably includes charges of discrimination. The person making the charge of discrimination may not realize that in order to make that judgment that person had to discriminate against one idea to judge the other idea more worthy.

Medical Doctors have standards they use in diagnosing any illness, whether it is a skin rash, broken bones, or PTSD, discriminating against one idea to judge the other idea more worthy.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines Fair as:

• agreeing with what is thought to be right or acceptable
• treating people in a way that does not favor some over others
• not too harsh or critical

As we can see the dictionary definitions support the idea that a judgment must be made and discrimination against an opposing idea is required. Simply put each time someone demands fairness they are, perhaps unknowingly, demanding a discriminatory act.

“…Fairness operates at many levels. We may try to personally conduct ourselves fairly, but we are also part of a community, a society, that delivers fairness – or unfairness – to ourselves and others. It might seem tempting to see the fairness talked about in politics as separate from our personal conduct, but philosopher AC Grayling believes the two are the same. “What holds for an individual should hold for society and vice versa. The concept of fairness is univocal – it has the same meaning wherever it is applied.”(1).

Unfairness can make us angry.

Being fair requires judgment and discrimination. In order to judge there must be a standard from which to measure the various competing ideas. If the person has fluid standards, one day the foot could be eight inches, another day ten inches, and still another day a foot could be thirteen inches. Having fluid standards can create a lot of confusion for all involved devolving into chaos.

So, next time you hear about someone wanting fairness ask what standard is being used and what is being discriminated against.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

(1)http://www.heraldscotland.com/opinion/13183292.Who_said_life_was_supposed_to_be_fair_/


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