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View Poll Results: Should people be executed?

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  • Yes

    38 38.38%
  • No

    47 47.47%
  • Maybe

    14 14.14%
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Thread: Death Penalty

  1. #26
    Fried Gold Polymath's Avatar
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    Good thread!
    I think when you have the death penalty in the US it's when the crime is beyond reasonable doubt. I am in favour of the death penalty but only when there's no doubt.
    You could argue that there is always 'some' doubt but in the case of say Fred and Rosemary West, or Michael Ryan it's pretty clear-cut.
    I don't see why my taxes should pay to keep these people alive.
    I believe in 'an eye for an eye' sort of justice, as well. Why not let the victims family exact some vengeance?
    I voted for 'maybe', though, because unless it's certain that they did it, some poor shmo will always get executed for something he didn't do. There can't be any doubt whatsoever.
    At the end of the day, I believe that anyone who murders in cold blood has demonstrated that they have no right to life. Do as you would be done by, that's my motto. They've shown they see killing as acceptable conduct.
    There are so many variables you can throw in though. Mental illness, under-age crime, crimes of passion, it's hard to be certain you're getting it right. That's why I put 'maybe' because I'm for it in principle, but in practice it's too complicated to be absolutely sure.
    I do know if someone murdered one of my loved ones, I really would try and murder them back, in cold blood, malice aforethought etc. Not that that's an argument for anything, just an example of how rationality flies out of the window in a crisis. I'd be executed by my own rules, in the above case.
    (I'll have to change it then, so it doesn't apply to killing someone back after they've killed someone dear to you, oh plop, it's still too complicated, I give in )

  2. #27
    Tenacious T Tyhe's Avatar
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    I think that a president in general make a difference, or CAN make a difference if they want to, concerning the death penalty. And George W. Bush being president will tell you that the change won't be positive in the next 4 years (I myself am hoping for the 'zero-factor' ) (Zero factor - a curse on the us presidents done by indian chief who's land was taken away. Every president that was chosen in a year eding with a ZERO, would die before his term was over.. so far all except Ronald Readan did (he was shot but lived)).

    Flawed.. hmm.. what should I think of that?
    It's still wrong to have a deaht penalty I think. And George W. Bush advocates it. That's bad news.

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  3. #28
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    Originally posted by Tyhe
    I think that a president in general make a difference, or CAN make a difference if they want to, concerning the death penalty.
    In the US, the death penalty is up to each individual state. There are some that don't have the death penalty and some that do. Bush shouldn't and won't interfer with state's rights. If the people of the state desire to remove the death penalty..then they certainly have the right to do that. The only exception to this that Bush may have any influence on is the federal prisons and so few are executed there anyway. But of course there is Tim McVeigh in the federal prison and he deserves more than what he will receive.

    Originally posted by Tyhe
    And George W. Bush being president will tell you that the change won't be positive in the next 4 years (I myself am hoping for the 'zero-factor' ) (Zero factor - a curse on the us presidents done by indian chief who's land was taken away. Every president that was chosen in a year eding with a ZERO, would die before his term was over.. so far all except Ronald Readan did (he was shot but lived)).
    I hope you are kidding about this. But, this is not something that one should even kid about. You are arguing against the death penalty but kidding about assaisination of the US president.
    Joseph Schell
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  4. #29
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Supernerd
    I agree with Djrs. People should get a fair chance at life.
    I think the victims should get a fair chance at life.

    Originally posted by Supernerd
    Imagine having a needle and knowing you were definatly going to die in 3 minutes, no hospitals or ambulances, just death. 2 minutes and 59 seconds later your heart explodes and you die.
    Imagine someone killing a family member of yours. That's a lot worse, considering the murder knows he faces the risk of lethal injection, while the victim usually makes no decision that leads to his or her death.

    I'm sorry, but there are some crimes people deserve to die for. It is easy to think otherwise -- but if such a horrible thing were to actually happen to someone close to you, you may very well change your tune. Perhaps you find that to be a weak argument -- I do not. We punish our children based on the severity of what they do as well.

    I recall a photo of a fire fighter holding a dead child -- he had pulled the body from the wreckage of the Oklahoma City Bombing. I do not need to blink before supporting the execution of Timothy McVeigh. Are you actually telling me I ought to pay for him to stay in prison for what he's done?

    Now, let me clarify one thing: I do not necessarily (my personal jury is still out on this) believe all murderers should be put to death -- but when multiple murders, and/or excessive ammounts of cruetly are proved to have taken place, I think it is more than appropriate.

    For others (depending on the situation, of course), I'd have to support what Bill O'Reilly mentions from time to time: banishment and hard larbor for the rest of their lives. Make them serve the world their victims have been forced to leave away from society somehow.

  5. #30
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    Besides violent crimes, drug traffickers face the death penalty in my country. The rationale sounds rather forced to me.

    And I agree that they ought to be 'tortured' during their time instead of being put out of their misery, which may be exactly what they hope for.

    Hmm that sounds a little too cruel.
    Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

  6. #31
    SitePoint Enthusiast emcgill's Avatar
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    Hello,

    I support the death penalty 100%. The reason that it exsists is because it is the ultimate penalty for someone who has commited a crime.

    Basically, I agree with TWT because I too think that people should be put to death when they do something like the Oklahoma City bombing. Just killing someone (it sounds like it is not a big deal, but it is) should not be punished with the death penalty, just life in prision with absolutely no chance of getting released. But if you kill a bunch of people with a bomb, on purpose with months of planning, then you deserve to die. I have no hurt feelings whatsoever over Timothy McVeigh.

    Some people say "well that is what they want, to die." I know Timothy McVeigh requested that he be put to death, and yeah, its happening...........but it STILL hurts. I don't care if he says he doesn't care or not, it is still going to be the ultimate punishment for him. If any criminal on death row says it don't hurt, or it don't matter anymore, then he is a liar.

    And I am glad George W. bush is our president and that he supports the deserving punishment for the crimes people commit.

    Eric McGill
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    Last edited by emcgill; May 9, 2001 at 05:18.

  7. #32
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Heck, I'm sure some people say they want to go to jail, too -- should we let them free? Let McVeigh say what he wants, I don't really care.

    And yes, that's another thing: if you murder someone, you ought to be in there for a long time before you have any chance of parole. I would say life in prison, no parole, but I can picture a stupid 17-18 year old losing his temper, and coming out an old man of, say, 50 or 60 years old, with a second chance at life.

    It's a gray area, but if you commit murder in the first, I can't see any reason why you should ever be free again, or even have the CHANCE of being free -- no parole. No way.

  8. #33
    SitePoint Enthusiast emcgill's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    It's a gray area, but if you commit murder in the first, I can't see any reason why you should ever be free again, or even have the CHANCE of being free -- no parole. No way.
    Exactly. Me and a whole lot of other people in this world are sick and tired of people walking out of prison when they shouldn't.

    People need to learn not to do it in the first place. We can't go easy on people anymore. We need to make them an example (and I don't mean giving everyone the death penalty, I simply mean giving them the punishment they deserve for their crime).

    And the biggest thing is, that PARENTS need to teach there kids right from wrong.

    This world, and my country is at the top of the list, is going downhill because people have no common sense anymore. And I am sick of it.

    It all goes back to parents disciplining their kids for the toys they didn't pick up, or the neighbor kid that they stole the toy from when the kid had it first.

    The right discipline for the right crime. It needs to return.

    Eric McGill
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  9. #34
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    No doubt about that -- parentingis a big part of this. Parents are just too negliant sometimes. I think public schools need to teach morality as well -- and I know what someone will say "who decides what is moral?" -- whoever institutes the program.

    Likely things to be taught? Sexual abstinence, that shooting other people is bad, that doing drugs can be dangerous, that speaking harshly to someone should be avoided at all costs, and that violence is not an alternative to simple debate/argument.

    If you (you being anyone reading this) have a problem with those things being taught, then I have a problem with you. If you teach these things to young children, they'll hold them tightly.

    It 100 times more effective if taught at home, but we obviously cannot rely on all parents to do this.

  10. #35
    Fried Gold Polymath's Avatar
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    I don't know about the US but in the UK you can't even smack your kids anymore. This is crazy, our children are being taught that no-one can effectively discipline them. I'm not advocating bringing back the birch rod, but a smacked bum never hurts for more than five minutes, and it's the shock that is the deterrent.
    My dad gave me the belt once and it deterred the hell out of me. It wasn't a 'darn good thrashing', but it was effective, so I speak from experience. It didn't do me any harm either, (apart from cultivating a penchant for sado-masochism, a propensity for vicious retaliation over perceived slights and an irrational fear of belts. Not really ).
    In nature, if a tiger cub is messing around, the mother tiger gives it a good cuffing. If baby monkeys are messing around the mother monkey gives them a good cuffing. I was messing around, my dad cuffed me. It's nature, and it's how we and other animals learn. Take this away and we have what we are observing now - a breakdown of law and order amongst the youth of today. I may sound like a cardiganned fuddy-duddy but it's true.
    What we need is effective deterrents and effective punishments.

  11. #36
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Polymath: you REALLY hit upon an issue I feel strongly about. I have little tolerance for anyone who tells me that spanking your children "teaches them to hit" -- in the words of a rather funny stand-up comic: "No it doesn't -- it teaches them to sit down, and be quiet."

    Do some people let their anger get the better of their common sense? Yes, it happens. Think of this: which is a more effective way of getting a horse to run? We tend to give it a small whip -- nothing that will truly harm it, but something to tell it it needs to go.

    Why do we do this? Because animals won't respond to a rational argument. Neither will small children -- small children cannot be reasoned with. A spanking is something they understand -- if I don't listen to what I'm told, I'll get spanked. Does anyone really think they're going to listen to logical points at 1-5 years of age?

    Kids are not logical. My little sister will get in trouble for hitting one of her sisters, or something of the sort, and when asked why she did it she'll say "she did something to me first" -- we ask her what she did to provoke her, and she replies "Um, I don't know. I forgot."

    We then ask her how she knows she did something to her first if she has no memory of it at all, and she either gives us a blank stare, or she gets whiney and frustrated. She can't follow the conversation at that point.

    Kids respond to spanking -- not arguments. Not until later on.

  12. #37
    SitePoint Enthusiast excessus's Avatar
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    UNFORTUNATELY, death penalty CANNOT be implemented because all judicial system sucks big time. But if we are able anytime in the future to *guarantee* that a criminal is guilty of killing others or commit awful atrocities, I would be glad to see him gone forever.

    I know that, most of the time, criminals are so because psicological problems or traumatic past issues in their lives, but honestly, i am for the death penalty!

    Besides, I have one question for you people against death penalty: humans has evil nature, or is society who makes them evil?
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  13. #38
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    I still enjoy a good spanking

  14. #39
    SitePoint Enthusiast emcgill's Avatar
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    Originally posted by excessus

    Besides, I have one question for you people against death penalty: humans has evil nature, or is society who makes them evil?
    I am for the death penalty, but I think each of us is born with sin (the Bible says that). So yes, we all have evil in us from the start. Society is what makes that evil grow. The experiances we have as a child is what makes that evil grow.

    The point is to make sure that the child understands that the specific "bad" or "evil" parts of society is not right, and that they should not "go along" with the crowd many times.

    This is one of the reasons that many parents send there kids to private schools or home school them, to keep them away from a bad society when they are at such a young age and vulnerable.

    Eric McGill
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  15. #40
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Indeed, but there is a fine line between keeping them safe from a sinful society, and sheltering them from real life. I'm homeschooled, and I feel my parents have done a very good job of keeping me away from certain things without sheltering me -- they realize there are some things I'm going to run into eventually, so they tell me what I need to know.

    I am sad to report that, from my experiences, not all homeschoolers are taught enough about the outside world. The kids are all too often homeschooled to protect them from a poor school system as well as dangers outside of the home.

  16. #41
    SitePoint Enthusiast emcgill's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    Indeed, but there is a fine line between keeping them safe from a sinful society, and sheltering them from real life. I'm homeschooled, and I feel my parents have done a very good job of keeping me away from certain things without sheltering me -- they realize there are some things I'm going to run into eventually, so they tell me what I need to know.

    I am sad to report that, from my experiences, not all homeschoolers are taught enough about the outside world. The kids are all too often homeschooled to protect them from a poor school system as well as dangers outside of the home.
    That is why my kids will be going to a public school (when I have them, maybe, someday), because I think it would be easier (for me, itleast. maybe not for all) to teach them to stay away from things in public school, then to try to balance the line.

    I go to public school, graduating in 9 days. I don't drink, smoke, or have sex. So I'm doing well. I can teach my kids just like my parents taught me.

    Good point.

    Eric McGill
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    I need to edit this, and add that there is absolutely nothing wrong with homeschooling your children, either. I think that is great. Its just the way that I see it, thats all. I don't want to offend anyone.

  17. #42
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    Some miscellaneous points and then my own opinion:

    1. Someone mentioned earlier that they thought it would be good to have church available to people in prison. I don't know if all prisons have prison ministries in them, but I know that there are churches and ministries that go into many of the prisons. Separation of church and state keeps are government from sponsoring these themselves, but many groups have taken it upon themselves to go into the prisons and provide opportunity for worship, teaching, etc.

    2. Although I don't advocate it, the Sharia (I believe that is what it is called), which is a judicial system based on Islamic principles, is actually not the system most of us envision, with the officials wontonly (sp?) chopping off hands and feet. There is actually a very detailed process with multiple requirements that have to be met before this type of punishment is carried out. The Sharia allows for capital punishment in certain cases, but I have read that actual executions are VERY rare. (Except in Sudan a few decades ago when a corrupt leader used it to execute people as he chose.)

    I am against capital punishment myself for two main reasons. First, we are all fallible. Even if every judge and jury member was completely objective, there is always the possibility of a mistake. Although life imprisonment is certainly no walk-in-the-park, we can at least release a person if evidence later proves that he or she is innocent. Once you put someone to death, there is no going back.

    Second, as a Christian (I personally don't like that label, but that's another topic), I am brought back to the story of when some Jewish leaders brought a woman before Jesus and asked him whether or not she should be stoned (they had caught her in adultery). He answered, "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone". She, of course, was able to walk away unscathed. Now, there are other reasons he might have said this, but it seems to me he was saying that things had changed since the days when the Torah had given the instruction that certain sins required the death penalty. I realize that this is a religious argument that many of you won't find applicable to you if you don't believe in Christianity, but for those of you who do, it is something to think about. Some Christians do believe, due to the Old Testament, that the death penalty is an acceptable form of punishment in certain cases. I was one of them up until a few years ago, but I have come to believe that that is really not a belief consistent with the rest of what I believe. It seems to me that it is really one of those vestiges of the "religion" of Christianity (like slavery was at one time), rather than what God had in mind.

    Some other things to think about:

    Many people argue that they should not have to pay to keep a murderer alive. I personally think economics is a sick reason to justify killing someone, but even if you go with that argument, life imprisonment is usually a cheaper option than the death penalty. Yes, much of this is due to the multiple appeals that death row inmates get, but, as history has shown we are imperfect in carrying out this form of justice even with these multiple appeals, I'd hate to see us decrease there number to save a few bucks.

    If you differentiate between killing and murder, with murder being immoral but killing being acceptable in certain cases (such as self-defense, some cases of war, and as punishment for killing another), then where does the death penalty really fall if we KNOW that we are putting even one innocent person to death by using this form of punishment, even if we don't know right now who that person is? It seems a very fuzzy line, at best, to me.

  18. #43
    Fluffy Kitten Programmer~ Elledan's Avatar
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    The death penalty is a way in which a society can take revenge on someone who has done 'something wrong'. In essence it's the same as stoning someone to death.

    I feel sad for all those innocent people who have already been executed. Only in a seriously messed up (civilized) country people can still be executed.

    IMHO the USA is indeed a (somewhat) messed up country. They suspend a kid who made a drawing of a soldier, but after that they start talking about whether the execution of McVeigh (sp?) should be broadcasted over the whole country...

    Anyway, the death penalty is completely useless to keep people from committing seriously crimes, like a terrorist attack or pushing someone from a balcony or stair, since those crimes are either committed in a rage of fury or they've been planned for weeks or months in advance.

    In both cases no one will think about the consequences and decide not to do it after all.
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  19. #44
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Messed up for the death penalty? No. Messed up for suspending a kid for his drawing? It depends.

    These are not the SAME PEOPLE making these choices. The teachers who suspended this child are not the ones flipping the switched on McVeigh, or inserting the injection -- they're different people with different viewpoints.

    However, yes, I think it's ridiculous to suspend a kid over a drawing like that. If kids were raised properly things like this wouldn't be an issue.

  20. #45
    Fluffy Kitten Programmer~ Elledan's Avatar
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    <<If kids were raised properly things like this wouldn't be an issue.>>

    Define 'raised properly'.

    You can't.

    Every child is raised differently, with all variables being (slightly) different compared to other children. Not even being raised in the same family and going to the same school will ensure that the child will do nothing 'bad' later in its life.

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  21. #46
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Drop the weird metaphoric phrases -- they're becoming tiresome.

    Can I define "raised properly"? Yes: raised in the best possible way in accordance with The Bible, is my personal belief...

    ...however, obviously we all agree that any child who goes on a shooting spree was not raised properly -- I'm sure you understood this.

    I consider it to be a fact that a child needs attention and affection from both parents, and a certain amount of time and recognition from each -- if they don't get it, complications will arise. It's the same reasoning that tells us that a girl with a distant father is likely to hop from bed to bed looking for male approval.

    Is it not obvious that if children were raised properly, these things would not/would rarely be an issue? Some people have chemical imbalances, and could be a threat no matter what their upbringing consists of, but I'm obviously not referring to them.

  22. #47
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    twt, You haven't even come close to defining raised properly. In fact, by using the Bible (I assume some Christian flavour?), you have in fact bolstered Elledans point that it is impossible to do so.

    However, setting that aside, I agree with the sentiment of the rest of your post....


    ...but...
    what has this got to do with the death penalty???

    (or are we talking about executing parents who don't raise kids "properly", or even the kids themselves? )

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  23. #48
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Sure I have -- to expect us to all have the same definition of "raised properly" is ridiculous -- that's mine. If a Christian raises their child under the morals and guidelines of life within The Bible, that person will be what most people consider today to be kind, gentle, forgiving, and many other things -- however, being human, we'll never be able to truly accomplish this, but that doesn't mean it's not to be tried.

    Here's my essential point: if your kids go on a shooting spree, you messed up at some point, barring some kind of mental/chemical problem built into them. You guys are smarte than this, and knew what I meant all along -- this has been quite a waste.

    I mean heck, I might as well say "I am positive my name is Chris" -- and you could all remind me that it's pretty much impossible to be positive of anything -- same thing: well, duh, but that's not the point, and it's a waste of time.

  24. #49
    Fluffy Kitten Programmer~ Elledan's Avatar
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    <<if your kids go on a shooting spree, you messed up at some point, barring some kind of mental/chemical problem built into them. You guys are smarte than this, and knew what I meant all along -- this has been quite a waste. >>

    Obviously, you didn't get that 'weird phrase' in my post.

    Not only parents play a role in the upbringing of a child, but also that child's brothers, sisters, friends, girlfriend, that girlfriend's parents, sisters and brothers, the teachers at school, tv, internet, videos, games, toys, grandmother(s), grandpa(s), etc. etc.

    Basically everything.

    Everyone who believes that you can just raise your children 'properly' so that they'll always stay on the 'right' path is not only ignorant but also a complete fool.

    There is no reason why someone goes on a shooting spree. It's always a combination of thousand smaller and bigger reasons, which slowly builds up pressure.

    I'm quite certain that nearly every child who goes on a killing spree never meant to kill anyone. They merely had to release frustration they couldn't release in another way.
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  25. #50
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Sorry to be pinickity (sp), but if all you are doing is defining "your" standard of good "raising", then I can have no argument. However, as I'm sure you recognise, the other 6 billion people on the planet may have 6 Billion slightly varied ideas, as Elleden said, depending on Culture, religious affiliation (if any), individual personality, financial circumstances, geographical location etc etc etc.

    To say that if a child goes on a shooting spree means that at some point "you messed up" is quite ridiculous, it oversimplifies a complex topic and belittles years of Educational Psychology research (part of my degree, which is why I jump aboard Tonto the tall)


    H
    ~The Artist Latterly Known as Crazy Hamster~
    922ee590a26bd62eb9b33cf2877a00df
    Currently delving into Django, GIT & CentOS


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