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Posted at 6:00 AM ET, 02/25/2011

Gay rights on the march

By Stephen Stromberg

The Maryland Senate Thursday evening passed a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in the state, following the legalization of gay nuptials in the District of Columbia last year. Though passage in Maryland's House of Delegates is not guaranteed, the lower chamber is generally more liberal than the Senate, and Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) has said he will sign the bill. So odds are that, soon, married gay couples will be able to live in the suburbs. And, suddenly, the mid-Atlantic will be among the most progressive regions in the country on gay civil rights.

This should only add to the "euphoria" that my colleague Jonathan Capehart describes as sweeping through the gay community after President Obama's decision not to defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in court. More importantly, it's yet more evidence that the legalization of same-sex marriage is inevitable in much of America, even if it's has to be accomplished slowly, state-by-state. As progressive as the Washington area may become, it'll surely be awhile before Virginia accommodates same-sex marriage.

But awhile is not never. Polling indicates that roughly half the country still opposes same-sex marriage. But polling also confirms this observation: Straight 20-somethings like myself grew up among out-of-the-closet gays and lesbians, wiping away centuries of stigma. Pockets of prejudice still exist in Generation Y. But decades of hard work in persuading gays not to hide who they are is producing a drastic realignment of public attitudes. As we youth become, well, less youthful, and our political influence expands, reaction to judges overturning anti-gay laws, to announcements such as Obama's on DOMA, to the passage of gay-rights legislation on the state or federal level won't be apoplectic -- it'll be remarkable for its lack of surprise.

By Stephen Stromberg  | February 25, 2011; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Stromberg  | Tags:  Stephen Stromberg  
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Comments

Hoorah, hoorah.
Let's all bend over and give Stromberg a big fist! Er, I mean a big hand. Wait, I mean let's all clap.

Posted by: ej_smug | February 25, 2011 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Let me get this straight.
We are seeking moral leadership from the Mormon Church on marriage?
The Book of Mormon was written in the 1820's.
They are upholding the traditions of our Founding Fathers?
Is Warren Jeffs an expert on marriage?
Clifford Spencer

Posted by: yankeefan1925 | February 25, 2011 8:07 AM | Report abuse

With the exception of maybe George Will and Charles Krauthammer, every shill at the Compost seems to be either gay or a pinko, or worse yet, a gay pinko.

Posted by: ddaly7 | February 25, 2011 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Well Will and Krauthammer are almost certainly functionally asexual so I guess you'll have to take what crumbs you can find.

Really gotta wonder what sort of Neanderthal is still gay-hating. Talk about living in the wrong century

Posted by: caothien9 | February 25, 2011 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Most of The benefits the government has bestowed upon married couples came about over time because there was a likely biological result of children. There is no possibility of a biological result of children when two same sex people live together therefore the government should not be involved. What the government bestows the government can also deny. Why would anyone want the government more involved in their lives? When your situation is not the norm, grownups don’t stomp their feet and demand all the rules change. Work on maximizing the things that will benefit your unique situations. We get it. They want to be accepted as they are. OK. I want to marry 2 people and get all the benefits. What about my rights? Where does it stop?

Posted by: allsides | February 25, 2011 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Why would anyone want the government more involved in their lives?

==

Get back to me next time your house burns down or gets burglarized and the cops don't come, you damned idiot.

Or better still, when your savings get drained and handed over to some billionaire.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 25, 2011 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Most of The benefits the government has bestowed upon married couples came about over time because there was a likely biological result of children.

==

Jesus you are one dumb mofo. My head is spinning here.

So without government encouragement, people wouldn't have kids. Then riddle me this, Einstein: why is proof of fertility and declared intent to pop crotch cabbage a requirement for a marriage license?

Were you home-schooled or did you go to a religious school?

Posted by: caothien9 | February 25, 2011 10:22 AM | Report abuse

No need for Obama to defend DOMA or the southern border. Of course, the northern border is a different story, where every car is stopped for at least 4 or 5 minutes while our crack immigration officers can scrutinize and question French Canadians and returning Americans with far more care than TX, NM, AZ or CA where we hardly wave at the illegals streaming over here with drugs, while on the Mexican side, they wave at folks streaming over with weapons.

Tell me this president is not a disaster. Much like this columnist.

Posted by: buggerianpaisley1 | February 25, 2011 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Whats the problem with all these idiots.This crap should not even be an issue.All of these political advocates and assorted pea brains and pronents only make this a distraction from the real problems this country faces."SHAME ON YOU PEOPLE"

Posted by: ctharwick | February 25, 2011 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Homosexuality defined:

The "inescapable conclusion," writes author De Young- "is that the Old Testament teaches that homosexuality is sin and brings God's judgment." And that conclusion, he shows, is only reinforced in the New Testament.

The sin of Sodom, which God called "very grave," brought a unique judgment in which Sodom, Gomorrah and surrounding cities were entirely destroyed. The land smoked and Sodom became a symbol referenced in 39 places in Scripture, De Young writes, of "all sorts of sexual perversion, violence, and pride that violates heterosexual marriage."

When Moses announced God's law to the Jewish nation, he included this rule: "You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination" (Leviticus 18:22 NKJV). Moses relayed this warning from God: "Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you. For the land is defiled; therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants."

Homosexual conduct, which was among the sins practiced by the prior occupants, the Canaanites, brought God's judgment and their ouster.

In the New Testament, Paul condemns homosexuality as "vile passions" that are "against nature."

But that's not all Paul has to say. He also offers hope. After telling Christians in Corinth that "Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites...will inherit the kingdom of God" (I Corinthians 6:9), he adds this:
And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. (I Corinthians 6:11)

Posted by: lyn3 | February 25, 2011 12:29 PM | Report abuse

You pencil-neck eraser brained geek-idiots, would anyone doubt all you people would\will take full advantage of such a convenient crisis?

What Posted by: caothien9 | February 25, 2011 10:22 AM?

See Below:

Gay rights on the march
Posted at 6:00 AM ET, 02/25/2011
By Stephen Stromberg @ the WaPo Bat Cave

Yeah Strumbergen and sycophants, the boots are on the ground, Congressman Capuano sees 'blood in the streets', code-pink has pumped it's fist, pointed with forked fingers, and shouted, 'shame, shame', menacingly in the Halls of Law and Justice of Wisconsin, Rangel, Jessee HiJackson, and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (apparently confusing a Sovereign State of a Gloriously Free America with the Nile in Egypt) says, "this isn't happening", but it did and it is, Steph, ol' dude.

Isn't this just the best end to the 'wet sleep' moment, sprouting and spreading it's spiney branches from NY(F'n)U, Cluelesslumbia, and UC(blind leading the clueless) Berkeley, for what's left of the left's age old dream of power and defiled glory?

You better hope it doesn't spread itself any thinner, it may snap back and bite you in your skinny pin-headed, posterior.

This post approved by the National Institute of Civil Discooourse in Phoenix, AZ, home of the Right to have an Official State Gun.

Posted by: RichNomore | February 25, 2011 12:30 PM | Report abuse

What? Is there another feedfest in some other cave? Did y'all fly on over the ABMSNBDNCNNPBSR Public-Private, Government-Media Complex @ the moveon.ogre cuckoo nest?

Posted by: RichNomore | February 25, 2011 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I find it interesting that when Liberal causes are voted on and the majority reject them, they When conservatives do that they are "going against the people's wishes". I also find it sad that our president will not uphold the duties of his office and that the DOJ fail in their duties as well. Oh well who cares as long as progressives get their way. I am amazed that it is right to be dishonorable, abusive and bigoted if you are a liberal. But be a christian, or a conservative and you are automatically evil, hate_filled ect. I grow tired of the liberals/progressives demanding my conformity and questioning my intelligence and education when they have less education, and have never left the country. There are so many other issues of true pressing concern like drinkable water, infrastructure, air quality, food contamination. Lets focus less on our petty personal concerns and worry about what is killing our home first. When we have addressed those issues then we can worry about who is allowed to marry whom.

Posted by: opspwcjc | February 25, 2011 4:57 PM | Report abuse

What does God have to say about all of this? Are our opinions superior to His Word. Man......you are messing with the wrong One. This has absolutely nothing to do with hatred. It has everything to do with right and wrong. Homosexuality is immoral, it is wrong. God said it is. "IN GOD WE TRUST."

Posted by: rdominguez42 | February 25, 2011 8:01 PM | Report abuse

lyn3 is a perfect example of how good people who don't know any better can be taught to hate.

In quoting Paul, she clearly has no idea that the words her bible translates as "homosexuals" and "sodomites" were, in the original Greek, "arsenokoitai" and "malakos." Nor does she realize that linguists have no idea what they meant because they are exceedingly rare. What they certainly could not have meant was "homosexuals" and "sodomites," because those words were not coined until centuries later. Gay-hating bigots just decided to use those words to translate the unknown ones and advance their homophobic agendas. Poor folks like lyn3 just don't know any better, and have ignorant ministers who don't either.

She also obviously doesn't know that for at least half a century now, a scholarly consensus has been emerging that the interpretation of the Sodom story has been completely distorted by the obsession with homosexuality. It has lost its original message, which was about welcoming outsiders and not be suspicious of them or mistreating them. It was a powerful norm in the desert society of the time--where being turned away could lead to death. And it is a norm that appears repeatedly elsewhere in the bible. Indeed, when Jesus is not welcomed in a town, he himself compares the town to Sodom and Gomorrah. Jesus seemed to think it was a story about not abusing foreigners. Which, of course, means the true "sodomites" today are all the bigots screaming about undocumented Latino immigrants. But instead getting outraged at that, folks like lyn3 can misuse the Sodom story to spew hate gay people.

lyn3 also doesn't seem to grasp the irrelevance of Leviticus. First, the word in the original Hebrew is "toevah," and it means "non-kosher"--like eating shrimp and pork. More inexplicable, however, is lyn3 complete misunderstanding of Christianity itself. It's called the New Covenant for a reason, lyn3. Jesus effectively "repealed" Leviticus and replaced it with his message. The few Levitical laws that were carried over didn't include the one you want to obsess about. Sorry.

And, of course, lyn3 cobbles together a mistranslation of Paul, a debunked interpretation of the Sodom story, and an irrelevant Levitical passage to support a flimsy case for despising and abusing gay people because lyn3 doesn't have any better support. In particular, lyn3 can't cite Jesus, because Jesus never bothered to utter one peep about gay people. Odd, then, that people who imagine themselves to be good Christians act like anti-gay bigotry is at the center of the religion even though Jesus himself didn't think it important enough ever to mention.

Posted by: uh_huhh | February 26, 2011 4:38 AM | Report abuse

In the 1960s when Afro-Americans were seeking to enforce their civil rights many white Americans were upset by the notion of equality.

Sometimes decency and fairness has to be imposed. Eventually, it becomes the norm and the populace forgets that there was friction between its supporters and detractors.

Bring on Gay Rights.

Posted by: robertjames1 | February 26, 2011 5:39 AM | Report abuse

Yup, gays are on the march.... Right into the W H as Social secretary. He and his boyfriend should make lovely photo ops for the .....Oh well.... boss

Posted by: frankn1 | February 26, 2011 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Gingrich on Obama’s decision on not defending DOMA..

“Imagine that Governor Palin had become president. Imagine that she had announced that Roe versus Wade in her view was unconstitutional and therefore the United States government would no longer protect anyone’s right to have an abortion because she personally had decided it should be changed. The news media would have gone crazy. The New York Times would have demanded her impeachment.

“First of all, he campaigned in favor of [the law]. He is breaking his word to the American people,” Gingrich says.

“Second, he swore an oath on the Bible to become president that he would uphold the Constitution and enforce the laws of the United States. He is not a one-person Supreme Court. The idea that we now have the rule of Obama instead of the rule of law should frighten everybody.

“The fact that the left likes the policy is allowing them to ignore the fact that this is a very unconstitutional act,” Gingrich said.

Posted by: pvilso24 | February 26, 2011 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Between all his extramarital affairs and divorces, I'm surprised Gingrich had time to say anything.

Posted by: uh_huhh | February 26, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

For hundreds of years, religious elites and common people have used their own religious interpretation (and passed down interpretation) to oppress based on gender, sexual orientation, religion and ethnicity. We have come to know of the atrocities that were all tied to religion such as the Holocaust, African-American enslavement, and the persecution of Jews.

In his book, “Holy Horrors: An Illustrated History of Religious Murder and Madness,” James A. Haught chronicles a thousand years of religious hate ranging from the witch hunts, to the numerous crusades, to the Holy Inquisition, to the religious anti-Semitic influence that later fueled the Holocaust. Haught says, “Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burned, tortured, fined, and imprisoned, yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of the coercion? To make one half of the world fools and the other half hypocrites.”

Furthermore, theologian Richard Rubenstein wrote that the Nazis “did not invent a new villain…they took over the 2,000-year-old Christian tradition of the Jew as a villain. The roots of the death camps must be sought in the mythic structure of Christianity.”

Throughout history numerous religious leaders and common people have pointed to specific passages in the Bible that have been used to validate slavery. One insightful book, “Noah’s Curse: The Biblical Justification of American Slavery,” by Stephen R. Haynes, further shows how just “one” biblical passage fueled anti-African-American sentiment over the course of hundreds of years.

The biblical passage, “A servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren,” reads Noah’s curse on Ham. Ham is later identified as the ancestor of black Africans, and this particular biblical passage is just one that has been used historically to justify African-American slavery. Also many Christian clergymen throughout history were pro-slavery. Historian Larry Hise says in his book, “Pro Slavery,” that ministers “wrote almost half of all defenses of slavery published in America.” He also lists more than 250 religious men who used the Bible to prove white people were entitled to own black people.

Similarly, Hitler and other anti-Semitic leaders throughout history have used biblical passages to validate the persecution of Jews. Here is just one passage that fueled anti-Semitism: “You suffered from your own countrymen the same things those churches suffered from the Jews, who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to all men in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last.” (1 Thessalonians 2:14-16).

In the year 2000, Pope John Paul II issued a historical pardon at St. Peter’s Basilica regarding the Catholic Church’s prime role in the persecution of Jews

Posted by: latinsa06 | February 28, 2011 1:01 AM | Report abuse

In addition, they also released a document that named (and officially validated) other multiple “sins” on their part including the Holocaust, Inquisition, Crusades and other religious acts.

Not surprisingly, comparable negative sentiment that existed hundreds of years ago against African-Americans and Jews, continues on even today for non heterosexuals. True, much progress has been made, but even today, when discussing bisexuality or homosexuality, some people are quick to (just as in history) point to biblical passages that condemn anyone who is not heterosexual.

A couple of years ago, we witnessed a progressive change in history as gay and bisexual men and women married in California before Proposition 8 was passed. With the right time to pass, it will not be long when equal marriage rights under the law will be given to non-heterosexuals; similar to the way the bans on interracial marriage were outlawed and ruled unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court despite 72% of the majority of Americans in favor of interracial marriage bans at the time.

Still, some do not consider gay rights a “civil rights” issue. However, Coretta Scott King, wife of the late Martin Luther King Jr., disagrees with them. In 1998, on the 30th anniversary of her husband’s assassination she commented: “I still hear people say that I should… stick to the issue of racial justice, but I hasten to remind them Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ ” I appeal to everyone who believes in Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream to make room at the table of brother-and-sisterhood for lesbian and gay people.”

Clearly, religion has also been used against women throughout history. One such biblical passage has been used to prohibit women from being ministers: “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak.” (I Corinthians I 4:34). This helped fuel misogynistic beliefs at the time, viewing women as merely second-class citizens.

Yes, it is true more people have died in the name of God throughout our history than any other way. So it behooves us today to not forget our history, for we may be doomed to repeat it. As we have seen through hundreds of years, indeed it has been repeated. I do believe in God very much and always will; there is a higher Creator, and I believe that our higher Creator would want us to most definitely learn from our horrid history, so that we will never repeat it again. The time is now for us to continue to fight for civil rights in all aspects. The work is never done!

Posted by: latinsa06 | February 28, 2011 1:03 AM | Report abuse

Marriage is not sacred you bible-thumping half-wits. HALF OF ALL MARRIAGES BY HETEROSEXUALS END IN DIVORCE. What's so sacred about that? Also, IN THE TEN COMMANDMENTS, I don't see "no same sex marriages allowed" but I DO SEE "THOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY." IF HETEROSEXUALS can destory, ruin, and pillage the SANCITITY OF STRAIGHT MARRIAGE....Why not non-heterosexuals?

RELIGION HAS NO BASIS OR FOUNDATION FOR DENYING A GROUP THEIR RIGHTS. WE ARE A COUNTRY FOUNDED ON RELIGIOUS FREEDOM!!! Any bible thumpers who say differently, are stupid, uneducated, and continue their hatred and homophobia inside their hearts. They will live a sad life of exclusion when they fail to see LOVE KNOWS NO GENDER. LOVE IS LOVE NO MATTER WHO YOU ARE OR WHO YOU LOVE!

DANIEL HERNANDEZ, THE GAY LATINO INTERN WHO SAVED GABBY GIFFORDS LIFE is a man of exemplary character! What a shame Republicans/conservatives overwhelmingly don't want him to be able to one day marry the man that he wants, and to have protections against being discriminated in the workplace. Republicans: you only want to take our country backwards. We; however, want to move forward to full marriage equality rights for everyone! Bravo to Daniel Hernandez and not because he's gay, not because he's Latino, but because he is a MAN OF FINE CHARACTER!

Posted by: latinsa06 | February 28, 2011 1:05 AM | Report abuse

TO THE RELIGIOUS HOMOPHOBIC WACKOS: Go move to the country of Jehovah/God/Jesus (whatever you want to call your creator). This is America where we have the FREEDOM to practice religion OR not. For the record, I believe in God; we are a country founded on RELIGIOUS FREEDOM to live our lives and to worship WHO WE PLEASE or to NOT worship at all! You religious wackos need to study what it means to have RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. That's what makes America great! Stop pushing your religion and crap on others! LOOK UP: SEPERATION OF CHURCH AND STATE! Onward to Marriage Equality rights for ALL!

Jehovah's Witnesses believe that exactly 144,000 people will be raised to heaven to spend eternity with God as spirit beings. ATTN: JEHOVAH WITNESSES: HOW CAN YOU BE SO SURE YOU ARE "ONE" OF 144,000 WHO WILL MAKE IT TO HEAVEN? Y'ALL BELIEVE IN A CRACKPOT RELIGION. Seriously. In case people don't believe me...look it up.

Posted by: latinsa06 | February 28, 2011 1:06 AM | Report abuse

The only reason homosexual, special rights is on the march is the fact that a bunch of homophillic liberals managed to get a temporary stranglehold on the levers of power, in America. That is changing already. Hopefully 2012 will complete the eradication of the Obamanation started in 2010.

The homosexualization of America's military forces and the destruction of traditional marriage may be reversed. We can only hope.

The Obamanation will be nothing more than a speed bump, for conservatives.

A trillion dollar speed bump!

Posted by: battleground51 | February 28, 2011 5:59 AM | Report abuse

I am convinced that at, at least, half of the Washington Post editorial and news gathering force is homosexual.

There is no other explanation for the constant drumbeat of pro-homosexual propaganda pieces coming out of the Post.

No wonder it is referred to as the Washington Compost by some, astute observers.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 28, 2011 6:06 AM | Report abuse

The only upside of the Obamanation's obsession with homosexuality is the fact that Obama is spending what is left of his political capital on homosexuals and their weird wants. That means Obama will be politically exhausted by 2012 and will not be able to accomplish anything of real importance.

The bonus for Obama after he becomes our next one-term president is that he will be welcomed at all "gay pride" parades in the future. I'm sure Americans' hearts will be bursting with pride as Obama walks, arm-in-arm, with Nancy Pelosi at the San Fransisco event, in 2013.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 28, 2011 6:14 AM | Report abuse

While you all are celebrating, perhaps, you can spend a moment or two to consider this: What law will the Obama Administration decide to ignore next? He is ignoring most of the Immigration laws and now DOMA. So while he appears to be on your side now - what about the next law to ignore?
Democracy suffers when laws are ignored - if they are bad or no longer needed/preferred - take them off the books BUT if they are still the 'law' do you really want an individual to have the authority to just ignore them?

Posted by: twhittlinger | February 28, 2011 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Historically the reason that government got involved in bestowing benefits upon married people that are now desired by individuals who are not married to each other, is because people who were considered vulnerable (i.e.: children and women who were financially vulnerable because of their role in caring for children),needed protection. The interest of the government was never the individuals sexual arrangement but was the vulnerability of children and women. It was a one size fits all arrangement which has now become antiquated and obsolete because of many societal changes one of which is the changing role of women.Marraige should return to what it once was, which was a strictly religious institution. The government should become neutral on all laws involving private relationships and each individual pair or triad or whatever should create contracts between themselves to protect themselves.

Posted by: allsides | February 28, 2011 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Same sex marriage is the basis for our cultural heritage, our sense of being as a society and as a Nation. Our Founding Fathers taught us that and they learned from the Reformation and the 'march of history', warts and all.

Posted by: IowaLad | February 28, 2011 9:59 AM | Report abuse

You know, the references to Sodom and Gomorrah were so compelling, I went to Genesis, then read on...

Genesis 19:33-36 (King James Version)

33And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.

34And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.

35And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.

36Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.

SO...same sex relations bad..plying Daddy with drink so as to bear his children..GOOD?

I so love that this is the story most often referenced to prove "God's" condemnation of homosexuality.

Posted by: eebsnallof | February 28, 2011 10:01 AM | Report abuse

So.....
Engagement ring.
Wedding ringg.
Suffer ring.

Posted by: gany1 | February 28, 2011 1:37 PM | Report abuse

"GAY RIGHTS" IS A HUGE MISNOMER! SODOMY, PEDOPHILIA,AND ANY OTHER ODD AND UN-NATURAL SEXUAL PRACTICE DO NOT DESERVE ANY SPECIAL RIGHTS THAT ENABLE THEM TO FOSTER THEIR DESTRUCTIVE, DEGENERATE, DISEASE SPREADING SEXUAL ACTS ON A MORAL SOCIETY!
GET OUT OF MY FACE AND STAY AWAY FROM MY INNOCENT CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN!

Posted by: lyn3 | February 28, 2011 1:37 PM | Report abuse

lyn its a good thing to know what your talking about before you talk.
Anything "under the lae" that is not the missionary position is calle sodomy. Therefore most people are committing that every time they have sex, so educate yourself a bit. In fact a few years ago when they had those virgin till marreied for teens they found out they were doing everything but missionar in order to keep "their" virginity. The US is so far behind the real world people know not what they speak or proper words for what they do.

Posted by: gany1 | February 28, 2011 2:35 PM | Report abuse

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