Why gays are second-class citizens

Update: I originally published this post on August 4, 2007. I am happy to say things have changed quite a bit since then when it comes to issues with LGBT equality. Although we still have a ways to go before achieving our goals, at least things are moving in the right direction.

I was asked by a visitor of this site to provide some clarification on why I believe this country treats me as a second-class citizen. Here are a few of the reasons why I feel that I and other gays and lesbians are being discriminated against simply because of sexuality.

There are over 1000 legal protections that automatically come with marriage, which gays are not allowed to have (except for one state) and none are recognized federally. Even civil unions carry no weight on a federal level.

Workplace Discrimination
There are many places in this country where a homosexual can be fired simply for being gay, since homosexuality isn’t covered under the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Currently, 33 states allow firing based on sexual orientation and 42 states allow firing based on gender identity. The federal government doesn’t seem to care.

There is currently a bill in my state legislature that would prohibit public colleges from providing same-sex partner benefits to their employees, a reaction to one college deciding to offer them.

Foster Care & Adoption
Many states do not allow homosexuals to adopt or foster children.

Many gay couples are torn apart because they fall in love with someone that lives in another country. Since they can’t marry, the foreign partner can’t automatically become a citizen, which would be the case with a straight marriage.

Health Insurance Benefits
Since we can’t marry, our partners aren’t covered by our insurance plans at work. A few companies and states are beginning to offer benefits to same-sex couples, while the federal government turns a blind eye to the injustice.

Gay aren’t allowed to serve openly in the military, although studies have shown that countries that allow gays to serve don’t have problems with morale (the main reason given by our government).

The list goes on and on…

Source: HRC

Author: Brian

Blogger. Bookworm. Michael Jackson fanatic. Lives in Kentucky with partner of 12 years and three fabulous felines.

32 thoughts on “Why gays are second-class citizens”

  1. OK, here’s the deal, gays are going to hell. There is no other destiny for a queer. The bible specifically forbids homosexuality. Fags are nasty, repulsive, and down right wrong. I would not consider gays as second class citizens, outcasts is a more apropriate term. Personally I have no gay friends nor do I intended to make any. Gays should be required to enter the military for the future sake of humanity. The human race can not continue if men are having sex with other men, it was not inteneded to happen. If you like penis and you have one as well then that is your decision but it should be hidden in society. Open homo’s disgust me. That is what I have to say on this topic and to any gays I have offended, I don’t give a damn.

    1. Yeah and the Bible also says it isn’t right to judge others because how you judge them will be how He will judge you. The Bible also says that you have to be accepting of all people. Yes, it does also say that it is wrong to be gay, but maybe before you speak out against gays the way you just have you will educate yourself on what the Bible actually says. Oh, and gays that want kids adopt the kids that straight people made and then decided they didn’t want. So gay couples adopting kids will actually be very beneficially for the future of America.

  2. Kyle,

    How nice of you to visit my site long enough to spread your venom. I considered deleting your post, but thought that other civilized persons might be interested in seeing just how much hatred there is in the world towards people like me.

    Although I left your entire comment intact, I did edit your username because it contained strong profanity. For someone who likes to use the Bible to condemn homosexuality, you might need to do a little more research into what the Bible has to say about hatred and idle words.

    So, here’s me turning the other cheek. Feel free to slap it, too.

  3. Brian,

    Thank you for this wonderful post. Kyle obviously doesn’t know how to behave in a civilized manner and would benefit from some education, in civility, civil rights, and in Christian history.

    I’m amazed by the hatred that some people feel. I know they were not born with that kind of poison in them and it saddens me that other people taught them this hatred. All in the name of their “god”.

  4. Great post man :-)
    Unfortunately half of the world still hates us.
    And to be frank these people are backwards!
    There are accounts in the bible of GAY SEX.
    The Romans had GAY SEX, you think people would get over it.

    I was spat at and everyday was chased home from school
    by 80 or more homophobics
    Homophobia is bad in the UK and even worse in America.

  5. Well here is the thing. As long as your entire identity is based around your sexual orientation, that is the only way you are allowing the world to interact with you. Try building an identity that is based on other things besides just your sexual orientation.

    Incidentally, disagreement does not imply hatred.

    PS, I suspect that Kyle is most likely a plant or a goof.

  6. You don’t want a marriage license, trust me. I don’t want one and I’m straight. All it does is make a contract between you, your spouse, and the government. That’s why they can come and take your kids at any time they feel like and force them to get all these vaccines and crap. They have a vested interest in your children because they are the “product” of that contract. Marriage license (and gun licenses) were created after the slaves were freed because “God forbid one of them marry a white person or get a gun in their hands.” Since then, the government has been choosing who’s allowed to get married and who isn’t. If two individuals are free and mutually choose to spend the rest of their lives with each other, who has any right, other than them, to say that is not allowed? The key word here is “free.” :)

  7. i am not a gay, but nice post, Brian!

    Kyle, you really think that figment of rubbish you carry under you underarms is God’s word? Forget about Brian going anywhere…there’s no hell in the first place, except in the imaginations of Christians…but one thing I know is that you have made your own life a hell by ignorance.

    A bunch of drunk nitwits come along and write a book, saying that it’s the word of God, and you start believing them? Well, know what? There have been like a gazillion other books since the bible too…want to live according to their fiction too?

  8. Dear Kyle,

    I don’t know the bible well but I do know God loves his children and will not send them to hell just because their gay or lez. If they want to spend their lives together in means of happiness and joy, well I don’t see the reason why they shouldn’t be together.

    When I read ur comment, I was sad at your opinion. These ‘fags’ who you call ‘nasty, repulsive, and down right wrong’, I think you’re pretty much one yourself. Gays, Lezs, Bi-s, transexuals, they are still normal people. They just happen to have a different view of themselves and of other people. I happen to know and have friends who are homosexuals. They are really nice people and are down right polite and well mannered. They just happen to like the same gender, is that so wrong? Must you condemn them so harshly?

    I’m straight but that doesn’t mean I’m against homos. And the human race will still go on because NOT EVERYONE is homo. I’m not saying homos are a minor either, I’m just saying be realistic. It’s not like you wake up one morning and the whole world stops reproducing, that’s just too far stretched.

    Like what ‘dianarn’ mentioned, ‘If two individuals are free and mutually choose to spend the rest of their lives with each other, who has any right, other than them, to say that is not allowed? The key word here is “free.” ‘

    So Kyle, here’s my words to you, stop being so negative.

  9. Well, first of all, Brian, I clicked on this because I thought it was another one of those stupid hate blogs from some idiot who’s scared of gay and the other side of modern sexuality.

    Furthermore, I think the man, who first commented is a fool. It’s very sad that Christians treat others that way. Homophobia is wrong and rather stupid. Christ never intended for his followers, whom I believe most “christians” forget they are, to act that way. We are to love, show love, be love.

    Love, the gays, lesbians, arabs, blacks, rich and poor alike.

    I am straight, I am a christian, obviously not following the same personalized Jesus as Kyle but I would like to talk on the matter. I thing it’s very sad that gays are treated in such a way in America and abroad.

    So just let meknow if you want to talk about it, the topic of your blog and maybe we can exchange some ideas.


  10. Kyle,

    You are wrong, wrong, wrong. Gays are NOT going to hell, quite the contrary. God asks that we learn love, not who we should love!! Many people who have died and been resuscitated, have returned with a vision of heaven that is wonderful. They were given special attention and love, for having to put up with people like you, when they were alive. People are attracted to, what it is that they need in life.
    As for the bible, it has been changed and rewritten , by humans to suit themselves, according to the moment in history. God’s word is in there, but it has been clouded and misrepresented, on numerous occasions.
    As for your long list of nasty name calling, I find you to be everyone of those things. YOU, have made yourself an outcast by your nasty speech, and rest assured NO gay would EVER consider you for a friend.
    NO one should have to hide who they love, and NO one cares what discusts you!
    You seem pretty sure of your views, you are in good company—
    Slave traders and owners and the government were convinced they were right,—child abusers and child labor which killed many children, were convinced they were right,— Suppressors of women, in the work force, and basic rights, ability to vote, were convinced they were right.
    YOU and them all have one thing in common, you are all WRONG!

    WE all know—-or are related to——or are a friend of——–or love—-
    someone who is gay. WE are in the majority.

  11. You know, I’m not really concerned as to what someone’s ultimate spiritual destiny might be. That’s between them and any deity that may or may not exist. What concerns me is how they behave towards me. If they treat me with decency and respect then I have no problem with them. Even if they are only indifferent, where that does not cause me harm, it’s just fine with me. I’m not Miss Overly Friendly either.

    Furthermore I don’t give a damn who someone sleeps with, and knowing that someone is gay doesn’t make me think any more about sexual issues than knowing someone is straight. That it brings about that sort of reaction in anybody at all strikes me as odd. It’s none of anyone’s business, as long as it involves consenting adults. And how bizarre that when it DOES involve consenting adults it’s yucky, but when it involves an adult who does not consent (a woman being raped, in other words) it’s no big deal and “boys will be boys.” Our culture is so bass-ackwards it ain’t funny.

  12. Brian, great overview post of some key issues. Also props on your response to “Kyle”. I think your above post is essentially about pursuing happiness and being afforded the rights that America was founded on, that should be due all citizens. So it is a shame that things are like they are. Yet it’s also an opportunity for us to do something about it.

    I think some Americans get angry at the idea of “homosexuality” because it challenges the way they were brainwashed to think from childhood onwards, in churches that still teach concepts as if we were living 2000 years ago.

    So if anyone has an angry feeling towards another person, eg you “Kyle”, I would encourage you to ask yourself, “why am I angry”? You will probably come to an answer that you are afraid that others will not like you if you are cool with homosexuality, because often we find ourselves stuck in “teams” and other groups whose existence depends on excluding others. For instance, most churches are all about promoting the group and implicitly criticizing those who don’t share the particular church or religion.

    Kyle I would also encourage you to check your math and your logic, as (1) you assume a population always growing is a good thing, rather than keeping a stable level, and (2) just because some people aren’t copulating doesn’t mean the population won’t increase. Think about it – senior citizens don’t make babies but no one’s saying they can’t have rights like the rest of us.

    Furthermore, if you think the Bible is strictly written to suggest conduct in modern times, you need to check your history of how it was written, how Christianity morphed to gain mass acceptance, how concepts like the Holy Trinity came about long after Jesus’ passing (eg, the Nicene Councils). For a quick overview of contradictions in the Bible, see Burr’s “Self-contradictions of the bible”.

    At the end of the day we can all get along with a bit more introspection and thinking. Enough of this knee-jerk hatred stuff.

  13. Brian,

    Excellent post — it gives a great overview of the issue. Many people don’t understand the automatic rights that are given to a spouse. Thank you.

    To GuyinCt — where to begin. First, Brian isn’t necessarily making his sexual orientation part of his identity — he’s identifying those things that cause him to be treated by others ( the state or the federal government, for example) in a second class way — not because of his own identification, but because of their own prejudice. He isn’t denied a marriage license because he says he’s gay; he’s denied it because he shows up to the registry with another man.

    Secondly, of course many gay and lesbians use their sexual orientation as part of their identity — you’ll find that is common among disparate underclass populations — whether non-white, female, non-christian, etc. It’s a luxury of the dominate class to be “standard”. When society stops identifying people, then it’ll be easier for us to integrate into a diverse, but accepting and tolerant society.

    To dianarn, this may be true for you, but i’ll have an easier time refusing to be married when i actually have that option. In the meantime, i see the financial benefits and want them for myself and my partner.

  14. Well, Brian, from reading this page and your “100 things” page it seems we have a bit in common.

    It never ceases to amaze me that people who quote the bible only seem to have read one little section and not the entirety of it. Those who tirelessly shout “Leviticus!” as damnation for gays forget that unless they own slaves and have multiple wives then they, too, are hellbound according to Lev. But limited minds are clearly capable only of pre-chewed ideas and can offer little of their own.

    I look forward to perusing the rest of your blog. Will probably add you to my blogroll.


  15. Thanks for your post Brian. This lezzie thinks it is most thoughtful!! As for Kyle..well…the rock that you climbed out from beneath just isn’t quite heavy enough to keep ya pinned down!! Please, crawl on back to it, and take this site with you..it will keep you entertained for hours.www.godhatesfags.com. And personally, its right up your alley!! You and Phelps would make great homophobic bedbug partners!! Damn, if only I could be a fly on the wall to witness this. Thanks once again Brian…keep your great posts coming our way!!

  16. Out of the six categories you’ve talked about, I agree they all need to be reformed in one way or another, but I’ve one question.

    With the current state of things, the fact that there are many many homophobic people and plenty of those people are in the military, and considering the disgusting numbers of how many female soldiers get sexually assaulted, would it really be best (at this time) for the military to accept gays openly? Morale changing is questionable, sure, but what about the hate crimes that will ensue? What about the gay soldiers’ actual safety? I understand the idea that fear cannot run lives and women still enlist despite knowing they’ll going to be surrounded by men who are not around but a few women. But it just seems to me, granted a person who is the majority of the majority, that denying something like which gender I’m attracted to or whatever transgender people are required to do, is worth it to actually be safe. And there is still the military’s side of it… Everytime a woman gets assaulted the military pays in some way shape or form. So, it is sensible that they don’t want gays to openly serve because they feel it will just increase such negative things and cost them more. It’s much easier to do that then to try and change homophobic adults to be accepting, which would be the right thing to do. Because obviously gays should have the right to serve openly, but I don’t see that being used as a measurment of being treated better because it seems to me like gays would go from, having to deny their sexuality… to… getting isolated and perhaps being physically harmed. Something needs to be done to the idea that gays are less human. It’s not good enough to say, “oh well, you don’t like gays, well allright that’s fine, really… but we (the government) are going to force you to hire them and work along side them.” I mean yes that needs to be done, right now, but just stopping there is no good at all.

  17. Well let’s see. I am 22, gay, and proud. So I think my pov should be rather welcome don’t you. Well I may have some things to say that you will not like. I do not apologize for them in any case. I am simply stating fact.
    The Constitution of the United States of America makes NO MENTION of laws pertaining to marriage, therefore it is none of the Federal Governments damn business. It is neither for them to take away or grant rights in this arena and it is also not their place to protect you in that arena. Marriage has NOTHING to do with the government of this nation and it needs to stop being an issue that is involved with the federal government.
    Workplace Discrimination
    See previous answer, aint *&%# in the Constitution worried about a place discriminating against you. Is is morally wrong? Yes. Is it despicable? Yes. Should it be a worry of the federal government, most vehemently NO! It is not their problem nor should it be a worry that uses their time that could be better spent working on more important matters. I have NEVER come across a job that would have not hired me based on sexual orientation and for the first four years of my adult life I lived in a VERY small town in West Texas, one of the most bigoted areas of the entire united states.
    Foster Care & Adoption
    This one ONLY relates to homosexual couples and not individuals. It has always been hard for non blood relatives not in a legal coupling to adopt, even straight couples, it is a non issue. It will be cleared up once it is realized that marriage is NOT a government issue and then true change can come in this area.
    NOT ONE SINLGE PERSON should ever be allowed to automatically become a citizen of ANY country. That is just asking for trouble. Each and every individual that comes into this country seeking to become a citizen should have to go through the exact same process regardless of age, sex, sexual orientation, or reason for coming here. To do otherwise is absolutely ludicrous. It creates the possibility of influx of possible dangers to the American people. Anyone could claim they were wanting to marry someone just to get them into the country to do as they wished as a free citizen.
    Health Insurance Benefits
    Same thing goes here as goes for marriage, it should NOT be an issue with the Government at all, this should be left up to the companies themselves and the people who run them. You can always go with a different insurance company or get a job somewhere that allows it. That is what freedom is about hun.
    This one I can’t really disagree on, I think it is absolutely retarded, but then again I don’t think sexuality should be expressed in any way in the military, be that gay or straight and it shouldn’t be discussed. The military is there to do a job not discuss personal lives. I can see both sides of the issue but still to throw people out for being gay just seems idiotic.
    In closing I again do not apologize for what I have said, I am as close to pure libertarian as I guess I can get. The government has way too much power and needs to be cut down to size and I am sick of people using personal issues that have absolutely no bearing on the federal government to gum up the works. People doing that is holding us back from achieving the type of government we so desperately need, the kind we initially had as outlined explicitly by the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Anything more is giving the government too much power and influence and must be stopped immediately.

  18. jestercel,

    Your vision of what the US should be is unrealistic in today’s world. It simply won’t happen whether a libertarian is elected or not. A president can’t force the rest of the federal government to relinquish power, and I don’t believe any of them would sincerely want to anyway.

    Whether it’s Constitutional or not, in the current social and political setup that we have in this country, you and I are being treated like second-class citizens.

    I also work as an openly gay man in a small, conservative town. That’s why I’m so thankful for the gay activists of yesteryear who were willing to band together to facilitate change. If it hadn’t been for them, I might still be fearfully hiding in the closet. We have a responsibility to younger generations to make sure that they will be able to live life just as fully as their straight counterparts.

  19. I don’t consider that my vision, it is simply what the US was when it first was created. When the founding fathers first brought it into being. They would be terrified and ashamed to see what it has become. We have quite successfully driven their dreams and their child directly into the ground and spat on their dreams for our freedom.

  20. Well, I think that REGARDLESS of your ANYONE’s sexual preferrences that it should not factor in to any workplace environment!
    I know that some people do not like the militaries “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy and Honey has a very good post on this on his blog, Online Reflection. However, I think that it is a good policy for ALL workplaces.
    As someone who does hire people for a workplace, I do not need to know anything about their personal life, I do need to know basically 3 things
    (1) Are you able to perform all the duties that this job requires?
    (2) Are you available to work the hours needed to complete the job?
    (3) When can you start?

    If I allow my personal opinion to factor in based on the color of their skin, their sexual perferrences, their race, their religion then I am in danger of discimination not to mention breaking the law.
    Does it happen in the workplace? Yes, it does. Can it be change? Yes, but not by government legislation. (my opinion)
    As humans we are brought up to make snap judgement about people based on alot of factors. IT is part of our American upbringing. We judge people baised on the IMMEDIATE image that they protray. How did we learn this? Our parents or other family members who helped raise us. So, how can it be changed? One generation at a time. It is not something that will happen overnight, however, my hope is that future generation will embrace our differences and although I am only 31, I have seen a change in the people around me regarding race and religion and even one’s sexual preferrences.

  21. Brian,

    I got hooked on your blog today while doing research on Ron Paul’s views on homosexuality. I find the discussions posted on both threads very insightful and thought out.

    I have a problem wrapping my head around people’s perception of Constitutional Law and how it applies today. Jestercal and others who share his view trumpet the US Constitution as the be-and-end all of the debate.

    Let’s go to Webster’s

    ” amendment: 1: the act of amending : correction ”
    ” correction: 3 a: something substituted in place of what is wrong”

    The last I checked the Constitution has been “corrected” twenty seven times. That’s a lot of white-out for something that someone falls back on to reinforce their prejudices or biases. The Founding Fathers that Jestercel hates letting down so much were slave-owning, snuff snorting, misogynists. To believe that we should be forever bound by their moral relativism is to be no better than those of the religious persuasion that follow their textual documents to the letter. They wrote a profoundly important document and we should be greatful; but we shouldn’t be lazy and assume that what applied hundreds of years ago still holds sway today.

    Words are written by fallible humans. Does anyone espouse that we all live our lives by a 17th century medical journal? Of course not, because experience and science have progressed to allow a higher quality of life.

    My question to you Brian is this: How do you differentiate between “special rights” and “equal rights”. Often when I stand up for my equal rights, I am accused of asking for special rights. Married people accuse me of attacking “their marriage”. Families with wonderful children blast me for even thinking about trying to adopt any of my own. Why is it so hard for people to realize I am not for gay hiring quotas when all I want is to not be fired for going home to my boyfriend at the end of a long days work?

    And this applies more to the other thread but Jestercel makes a similar point that needs addressed. There seems to be a growing swell trying to redefine government as only at the federal level. If we only gave all the power to the states the utopian society we all crave would “poof” into being. Do you know where the Senators and Congressmen come from? Do you know that our executive branch has been made up of former governors? If you are not happy with government at a federal level why do people keep tossing their coins in the state wishing well? “Meet the new boss…..same as the old boss.”

  22. @ Paul: Excellent, excellent comment.

    How do you differentiate between “special rights” and “equal rights”.

    That’s a great question and one not easily answered. The people that are usually making statements about us wanting “special rights” are typically those who oppose us having any rights, so arguing with them is often pointless. Anyone should be a able to see that we currently have less rights than our American counterparts.

    All I know for us to do is to keep expressing our desire to partake in things like marriage and adoption, while explaining why they are so important to us. Once people start to see that we want them for the same reasons that they do, they’ll start to see that there’s nothing to be afraid of.

    Thanks for stopping by! :)

  23. Okay, it’s December and this was posted in August so I’m really-really late here. But I have to say that when I read Kyle’s comment just now I actually laughed out loud because I thought — seriously thought — that it was a joke. But as I read it and I realized it was not written by a friend of yours and there was no punch line coming, I was horrified, really effing horrified. What a royal drag, Brian, to be the target such ignorant, scary people. I did love your response to him, though, and your opening sentence made me laugh again. It’s just too bad you’ve had to become savvy at handling scary morons.

  24. I came across this website because I am writing a 10 page research paper on gay marriage for school. I am totally for it. I believe that same sex marriages should be legalized.Everyone deserves to spend the rest of their lives with the person they love..so what if you are the same sex. I came across kyle’s comment and here is what I have to say:
    You are absolutely disgusting,how can you be so closed minded? For someone who uses the words in the bible to express so much hatred is someone who needs to re-evaluate their beliefs. It is because of people like you that gays and lesbians are afraid to express themselves. Low lives like you who get off on making other people feel like sh*t..you are probably the most ignorant person I have ever came across in my 17 years of living. The world is not going to stop reproducing because of gays and lesbians moron. Not everyone is homosexual. How uneducated are you? Reading your comment makes me want to legalize gay marriage even more..to show you that your words towards gays and lesbians don’t mean sh*t and that you are not going to bring anyone down. And yes I am straight and very happy with my boyfriend but I have a sister who is bisexual and your words offended me as much as they would her. But it is okay because you mean nothing.

  25. @ Charlene: Your research paper sounds very interesting and I would love to read it when you’re done. Will you be posting it online?

    Kudos to you for being so open-minded and compassionate!

  26. Dear people, if you want to know just how far some self-righteous right-wing Christians are willing to go, just pull up the web site: “HOMOSEXUALITY IN GOD’S EYES”. This is a real eye-opener to those who “Use the Bible as a Weapon of Mass Damnation”.
    I did not wake up one day and decide to be gay, any more than I opted to be white or left-handed. For me it was a “Natural”choice” are so very wrong. Why the blazes would we want to be hated, ousted, persecuted, denied rights, harassed and murdered out of choice? Oh, we can change, of course. We can also sprout wings and fly.
    I’m a Viet Nam Veteran, a 9/11 Ground Zero Survivor and a Lover and Partner of almost 29 years with my partner, Joey.
    That much was a choice.
    Using the Bible to insult, defame, harass, degrade and abuse is also a choice and it seems like far too many have chosen to do so. After us, who will these hate-mongers turn on ? While they’re pointing the finger of blame at us, three are pointing right back at them. Jesus did not come to save the righteous, he came for the sinners – us !!
    One more point. The Christian church is responsible for countless millions who were hunted down and put to death during the past 2,000 years. Few institutions on earth can make that claim. Right off the bat, as soon as Christianity became the state religion of Rome, they started “weeding out” undesirables by sword, fire and other devices of murder. Rivers of blood from Christians.
    “Clean up your own act first, Christians !!

  27. @ Mike: “I’m a Viet Nam Veteran, a 9/11 Ground Zero Survivor and a Lover and Partner of almost 29 years with my partner, Joey.”

    Wow! I salute you and your partner.

    “Why the blazes would we want to be hated, ousted, persecuted, denied rights, harassed and murdered out of choice?”


  28. Hi, i have a gay uncle, sister, many gay friends and i myself am bisexual. I don’t believe in God and have a hard time with the fact that bigots such as Kyle Allen using their religion to dominate the rest of the world. If they say that homosexuality is not natural, then why get glasses their not natural. According to some we are the bottom of the zest pool and are going to hell, how are they to tell me im going to hell because i choose to love differently then they do. I wonder if they may be afraid of their own sexual identity and shun the openly gay community so they wont be tempted to give it a whirl. Any way its not their place to tell me whats right and whats not and i cant help who i fall in love with be it a man, or a woman. I have no discrimination against anyone with the exception of bigots like Kyle Allen. Thank You.

  29. About the marriage thing-marriage isn’t a federal right anyway. It has always been left up to the states. I don’t understand how the national government could not recognize your marriage; it’s not under their jurisdiction.

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