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Race And The Parties

John Hawkins takes a look at the racial history of the Democrat and Republican parties and challenges the conventional wisdom so many hold about race and the parties.

Because so many Democrats have no problem with using racial discrimination for political purposes, they'll support policies like reparations, Affirmative Action, and racial quotas that Republicans simply won't. Then they deftly distort and exploit incidents like the Katrina rescue efforts and Bill Bennett's condemnation of the idea that black babies could be aborted to reduce the crime rate to convince black Americans that the GOP hates black Americans.

This is all despite the fact that for a large number of black Americans, the GOP is a much better fit than the Democratic Party. The GOP is the party that's friendly to religion, anti-abortion, against gay marriage, tough on crime, and for low taxes and school vouchers. Yet, so many black Americans have been deceived into sticking with the Democrats even though the Dems do so many things that are harmful to our country as a whole and to black Americans in particular.


Comments (33)

Watch how quickly a liberal... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

Watch how quickly a liberal turns racist if an African-American decides he doesn't want to be called "Toby" anymore and begins to figure out the "helping hand" the Democrats extend isn't there to help them up, but to keep them down.

That's right, Lorie: blacks... (Below threshold)
Totally LOLing:

That's right, Lorie: blacks are too stupid to realize that Dems have been pulling the wool over their eyes. The Katrina aftermath had nothing to do with race, and if it did, the blame does not lie at the feet of this administration. Go with that in this election year, please. You'll finally convince the remaining dozen or so black Americans who vote Republican to do otherwise.

It doesn't matter how Bennett intended his comment to be interpreted; the idea that aborting a certain racial type of foetus may have an upshot for America, intended literally or as a reductio ad absurdum of another position, would not occur to a non-racist person. Bill Bennett deserves to be taken as seriously as this laugh-assable post of yours.

I counted on getting a few ... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

I counted on getting a few comments from those who will never be convinced that all Republicans are not racists. Isn't it funny how Dems claim to think Bush/Rove will do anything for votes, but then try to sell the lie that Bush wanted blacks to die on national television during the Katrina aftermath. Kanye West might be that stupid, but that does not mean that blacks are (as the comment above claimed that I believe). They aren't stupid, they have just heard the same message that we all have that Republicans are bad and hate black people.

Now that they are getting information from alternative media and other sources, gradually black conservatives are coming to the Republican party where they see they can actually have a voice, not just be paid lip service. Even if those blacks giving the Republican party a chance are only in small numbers, that is enough to make Dems nervous. I will assure you, that is not a laughing matter to those counting votes in the Democratic party.

Right on Lorie. He... (Below threshold)
kirktoe:

Right on Lorie.

Hey TotallyLOLing,

Who was it that reported that blacks in the Superdome were raping children and that murders were being committed? It was the main stream press and the ligberal bloggers!!!! Fuinny how they automatically assumed that sicne there were blacks in there that there must be chaos going on.

I'm sorry you can't see the world for the way it is - namely that it is the liberal politicians who have a prejudice problem with blacks. I suggest you check out the vote count from the Civil Rights legislation in the 1960's. Hint: it wasn't Republicans who filibustered for days on in. It wasn't a Republican who stood in the doorway and refused to let black children in while saying that "segregation forever".

BTW, why is it that blacks have returned to the south in droves the last 20 years? If Republicans are so racist, why would they go into an area where they were the majority party?

All of this is probably lost on you. It sounds like you're just more interested in quoting liberal mantra than actually getting at the truth.

I know you're smart enough ... (Below threshold)
Totally...:

I know you're smart enough to know the difference between "Bush wanted blacks to die" and "Bush would have done more if it were a rich white suburb underwater". Nobody worth paying attention to asserted the first; nobody seriously denies the second.

Ergo, Democrats have more important things to worry about than who black people are voting for, and you ought to focus your energy on plausible causes if you want your party to retain control of the House.

"The Katrina aftermath had ... (Below threshold)
kirktoe:

"The Katrina aftermath had nothing to do with race, and if it did, the blame does not lie at the feet of this administration."

Again, you need to educate yourself on what really happened. The federal government cannot come into a state without permission of the Governor and Blanco refused Bush' request for help. That is a fact, not fantasy like your post.

Second, Mayor Nagin (who is black by the way) did nothing to help get people out of New Orleans (despite repeated warnings to do so from Bush). I remember him holding his Starbucks coffee cup and acting non-chalant 24 hours before the Hurricane hit.

I guess he's racist too? And Senator Landrieu? And governor Blanco?

know you're smart enough t... (Below threshold)
kirktoe:

know you're smart enough to know the difference between "Bush wanted blacks to die" and "Bush would have done more if it were a rich white suburb underwater". Nobody worth paying attention to asserted the first; nobody seriously denies the second."

===========================================

Actually, white suburbs were flooded also.

===========================================

Ergo, Democrats have more important things to worry about than who black people are voting for, and you ought to focus your energy on plausible causes if you want your party to retain control of the House.

Really? is that why they are spending so much time trying to discredit Michael Steel in Maryland? The fact is that the Dem's ARE worried about who black people are voting for because if they lost just 15% of the black vote natinally they're toast.

kirtoe--no "liberal" tried ... (Below threshold)
Totally...:

kirtoe--no "liberal" tried to keep schools segregated, you idiot. A Dixiecrat did. Dixiecrats are to liberals what Lincoln (a liberal) is to today's Republican party. And that Dixiecrat is dead, while Trent Lott still has a high post in the Senate after stating that Strom Thurmond would have made a good President back when he was a segregationist. And did you know that not all Democrats today are liberals? One is an ideology, the other is a political party in the United States with a strange history. If you are in fact a grade six student, I apologize for being condescending.

And who said "blacks" were raping and murdering one another in the Superdome? You probably assumed the people were black because you probably assumed that rapists from a city with a poor black underclass would be black. And although it turns out that nobody was murdered or raped, when the media reported that a city was underwater, the administration sat on its hands. Crying murder helped get people's attention, and it's not like anybody was brought up on false charges.

You are an embarassment to other conservatives like Lorie who are capable of rational thought. Move along.

The fact is that the Dem... (Below threshold)
Luke:

The fact is that the Dem's ARE worried about who black people are voting for because if they lost just 15% of the black vote natinally they're toast.

Yep, the old Democrat Party would be "Gone With the Wind". Hey that could be the name of a good book or maybe a movie.

White suburbs were flooded ... (Below threshold)
totally...:

White suburbs were flooded after the white people drove away in their vehicles, kirktoe. Poor people, mostly black but of all races, were stranded there.

To reiterate: you lose on this issue.

White suburbs were flood... (Below threshold)
Luke:

White suburbs were flooded after the white people drove away in their vehicles, kirktoe.

Intentionally?

I don't know what you mean,... (Below threshold)
ttly:

I don't know what you mean, Luke. What I meant was that the people who could afford to leave, left the city. People without the means to do so were stranded, left to starve, dehydrate, and perhaps die. Most of these people were black.

If you're asking if the white suburbs were flooded intentionally, I suggest you ask Jeebus' dad. If you're asking if they drove away on purpose, then yes, I think a mass exodus requires a large degree of intent... but I'm probably just too tired to get whatever joke you're making.

Attracting new advocates to... (Below threshold)
Brad:

Attracting new advocates to your cause involves either changing your message to the advocate's views or convincing them of the merits of your current message.

We have suffered for 50 years under the dictatorship of a liberal media that has painted Republican positions with a tainted brush. As all Americans are coming to see the wisdom of those positions Republicans are realizing real gains.

The question is whether Republicans should change their overall message to make it more palatable to persons not normally amenable to the traditional Republican message or should we do what we see as right and wait for the unconvinced masses to come to us? The British Tory party, under John Major, tried continuously to track public opinion led astray by the media and eventually vectored themselves right into the ground, with an empty tank. As their electorate is waking to the traditional message the only one to lead them back is a reformed Labor leader.

A strong conviction vigorously held is the best possible message, and the one most attractive to interested voters. In the end, selling your soul for a siren's song in the hopes of using it to capture a boat full of unsuspecting voters is disrespectful to both, your soul and the new voters.

And the person who refused ... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

And the person who refused Amtrak's offer to fill the last train out of N.O was...who?

Who ignored the city's evacuation plan?

Who didn't even call for an evacuation until it was far too late?

Hint --- it wasn't a Republican.
-=Mike

You're right, Mike. Brownie... (Below threshold)
bleh:

You're right, Mike. Brownie did a heckuva job, as good as any dude with a background in horse breeding/racing (whatever it was, it wasn't emergency management) could be expected to do. Not his fault he had the job. It was somebody's, though, and I'll give you a hint: not Ray Nagin's.

You think the President, Cheney, and Chertoff were victims of the incompetence of local leadership. Well, you're incorrect, as they are in fact incompetent themselves, but even if that were correct, what kind of a national leader sits there and shrugs and shirks his responsibility of protecting the welfare of his citizens because it's not his jurisdiction? And even after local leadership has failed? Everyone who could be convinced of the incompetence of this administration, was. Bush could drown a baby panda with his bare hands and you would find a way to blame animal rights' groups.

Here we go again, Bush is i... (Below threshold)
Big Mo:

Here we go again, Bush is incompetent, Republicans hate blacks, blah, blah, blah.

And "Totally..." Lincoln was a "liberal" ? Give me a break. Don't you dare claim him as one of your own, if that was what you were implying.

And sorry to burst your bubble, but Lincoln has a LOT in common with today's GOP. Everything liberals bitch and moan about that Bush has done...Lincoln did in spades.

Big Mo, whether liberals ca... (Below threshold)
Totally:

Big Mo, whether liberals can claim responsibility for every advancement of human rights within the U.S. is debatable (as is whether or not Lincoln was a liberal--sure seemed like it compared to his opponents), but advancing human rights for the sake of respecting the inherent value of all persons is a liberal goal if ever there was one.

As for your remark about Bush, his war is now presented as an attempt to democratize the Middle East, a mission based on the liberal ideal of fairness and tolerance for all regardless of somewhat arbitrary national boundaries. It was initially justified in terms of national defense, though, which is a more conservative ideal. Lincoln did not wage the Civil War to defend the North; he did so out of respect for the universality of human rights. You cannot find a conservative thinker who holds these to be fundamental and inalienable, as opposed to merely a means to a stable society that values property rights. (The first is pure and virtuous, the latter, crass and selfish.)

So...: Lincoln's motives, in retrospect, seem pure; Bush's do not, at least not to most people on this planet who did not vote for him. I expect you differ, which is fine. But I too reject you claiming Lincoln as "one of your own" simply because he was a Republican. His liberal virtuousness transcended party affiliation, as it ought to.

You're right, Mike. Brow... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

You're right, Mike. Brownie did a heckuva job, as good as any dude with a background in horse breeding/racing (whatever it was, it wasn't emergency management) could be expected to do. Not his fault he had the job. It was somebody's, though, and I'll give you a hint: not Ray Nagin's.

FEMA is a mop-up agency. That is their job. The city and state had dramatically MORE responsibilities and utterly failed in almost all of them, which made FEMA's work all the worse.

...of course, I suppose it's pointless to mention that I didn't, you know, defend Brown. But I guess since you can't defend Blanco or Nagin, you have to smear others.

You think the President, Cheney, and Chertoff were victims of the incompetence of local leadership.

No.

I know they were.

Well, you're incorrect, as they are in fact incompetent themselves, but even if that were correct, what kind of a national leader sits there and shrugs and shirks his responsibility of protecting the welfare of his citizens because it's not his jurisdiction?

One who, you know, follows the laws and regulations?

"How dare Bush not just ignore law? I mean, we've NEVER criticized Bush for doing something that actually isn't illegal in the first place. Heck, screw federalism."

Everyone who could be convinced of the incompetence of this administration, was.

Simple-minded folks are of precious little concern.

Bush could drown a baby panda with his bare hands and you would find a way to blame animal rights' groups.

Bush could save an orphanage from a fire and you'd gripe that he didn't save the roaches in the wall.

Hey, irrelevant and moronic points ARE fun!!!

whether liberals can claim responsibility for every advancement of human rights within the U.S. is debatable (as is whether or not Lincoln was a liberal--sure seemed like it compared to his opponents)

Not amongst the Republicans. Compared to the Dems, yeah, he was.

but advancing human rights for the sake of respecting the inherent value of all persons is a liberal goal if ever there was one.

Conservatives are classical liberals.

Modern liberals are...well, modern liberals.

I didn't see your side on board of removing a dictator and freeing people in Iraq.

As for your remark about Bush, his war is now presented as an attempt to democratize the Middle East, a mission based on the liberal ideal of fairness and tolerance for all regardless of somewhat arbitrary national boundaries. It was initially justified in terms of national defense, though, which is a more conservative ideal.

No, it was explained for many reasons. Freedom was one of them very early on.

For people who think Bush is stupid, the left seems to have a hard time keeping up.

Lincoln did not wage the Civil War to defend the North; he did so out of respect for the universality of human rights.

...which explains the freeing of the slaves in the border states of the Union.

Maybe, just maybe, somebody can pursue an overall good and make mistakes in the process?

Nah...

You cannot find a conservative thinker who holds these to be fundamental and inalienable, as opposed to merely a means to a stable society that values property rights.

This statement is so mind-bogglingly moronic that I hesitate to even condemn it for being asinine.

It is YOUR side that has championed speech codes.

Championed limiting free speech in an election.

Thought crime.

Sexual harassment law where intent is immaterial to the charge.

Yeah, waste more of MY time regaling me on how the left is so darned concerned about human rights.

So...: Lincoln's motives, in retrospect, seem pure

Again, explain keeping the slaves enslaved in the border states. Lincoln did not want blacks to vote. He did not want blacks to serve on juries.

He didn't believe in equality. He just believed that slavery was a sin --- which is correct.

And we know which party fervently supported slavery.

And Jim Crow laws.

And segregation.

Heck, even liberal icons like Woodrow Wilson were unmitigated racists. It took REpublicans to give minorities rights, time after time.

Heck, WHAT group HAS received rights thanks to the Dems? Not women. Not blacks.

Bush's do not, at least not to most people on this planet who did not vote for him.

"The world" was willing to work with Hitler in the 1930's. That they dislike Bush is hardly a condemnation.

But I too reject you claiming Lincoln as "one of your own" simply because he was a Republican. His liberal virtuousness transcended party affiliation, as it ought to.

He's not a Republican because you don't hate him.

Got it.

Pretty consistent logic there.

Totally said:... (Below threshold)
MikeB:

Totally said:
The Katrina aftermath had nothing to do with race, and if it did, the blame does not lie at the feet of this administration. Go with that in this election year, please.

Totally said:
Poor people, mostly black but of all races, were stranded there

Are you arguing that "Katrina" was about race (as your first statement indicates) or was it about socioeconomic status (as your second statement indicates) ?

- MikeB

MikeSC, I never said he was... (Below threshold)
Totally:

MikeSC, I never said he wasn't a Republican. And I never said that Democrats weren't the bad guys for the better part of the history of the US. I said that a humanitarian justification for helping disadvantaged or disenfranchised people is a liberal argument, one that I am happy to see conservatives borrow. I am, and will remain, suspect of their motives for doing so, as the PNAC is about protecting American interests through global democratization, not about democratizing the globe for the good of humanity as such. But I'm happy to see these projects intercede, and hope that things genuinely improve in the Middle East.

As for "my side" being against human rights, was it not John Ashcroft who went on an anti-obscenity crusade? Who had Tommy Chong arrested for selling bongs, for chrissake? So Woodrow Wilson was a racist; so was William F. Buckley in the 1950s, but we still read his work today (and so we should). Robert Byrd was a racist, but so was Thurmond (and so is Lott). People, and parties, have evolved. Furthermore I don't think you have correctly identified what "side" I am on anyway. If Republicans better represented the core ideals of the Republic, then I would vote for them. I am unpersuaded that they do, although the ineptitude and self-aggrandizement of many Democrats is hardly reassuring.

Look, I'm not claiming that conservatives are racists as an a priori fact. I'm claiming that Bush (who isn't really a conservative anyway) has not made any inroads with black Americans, and that Katrina is symbolic of that fact. You can blame the media for part of it if you want, but people are getting tired of hearing conservatives do that every time people perceive them or their policies negatively. If black Americans are persuaded that the best thing for them is to vote for conservative candidates, I am not in a position to say that they are mistaken. Malcolm X wanted blacks to vote for Goldwater, after all. I just don't see how you could possibly think that THIS Republican party could possibly be perceived as better representing the interests of black Americans, unless you think that hating The Gay and institutionalizing Christianity within the government is more important than investing in urban infrastructure. Anyone who thinks that, black or white, is someone I have very little patience for.

Sorry MikeB, forgot to answ... (Below threshold)
Totally:

Sorry MikeB, forgot to answer your query--

I think it was about socioeconomics, but I also think that there are strong indicators linking race to one's socioeconomic prospects in the United States. That's a whole other sociological can of worms for us to disagree about, but you're right, I conflated the two and they are not the same.

Totally - sorry, ain't buyi... (Below threshold)
Big Mo:

Totally - sorry, ain't buying what you say about Lincoln, especially because liberals eschew religion and government colluding together. Read his speeches for proof.

That's conservative right there. It sure ain't liberal.

Big Mo, religious leaders a... (Below threshold)
Totally:

Big Mo, religious leaders and thinkers are not by definition conservative. Spirituality was important for Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, William James, and to a lesser extent Kennedy, FDR, etc.

Lincoln gave sincere and passionate speeches in religious terminology because that's the sort of person he was. He wasn't advocating for mandatory state-sponsored theism, which is what liberalism opposes. If you disagree, then what do you think of Jimmy Carter's deep theism? He's a liberal, ain't he? I mean, you guys don't want him. =)

You're right, I don't want ... (Below threshold)
Big Mo:

You're right, I don't want Carter - EVER :^)

But the values and ideals that Lincoln spoke of are Republican and conservative to the core.

Hey, maybe conservatives an... (Below threshold)
Totally:

Hey, maybe conservatives and liberals can find common ground in their opposition to slavery! Could this dialogue heal the nation? =)

I won't argue that conservatives can make a principled argument against slavery (although I wonder how States' Rights advocates feel about it), but I will reassert that historically it has been the liberal spirit of the Englightenment that has fueled advances in human rights. This traditional liberalism probably encompasses much of what we now call conservativism, and has little to do with the post-modern hooey I think you might be quick to paint all "liberals" with.

Nope, Matt/Totally - it was... (Below threshold)
Big Mo:

Nope, Matt/Totally - it was Christianity that fueled abolitionism that led to the end of slavery, Christianity that fueled women's rights, Christianity that fueled civil rights, and so on.

Not the "liberal spirit of the Englightenment."

If you don't believe that, then read t he actual speeches, letters and writings of the movers and shakers, and the rank and file. See how often they invoke God and appeal to the Almighty. And how little they invoke humanism.

Yeah, I've read lots of the... (Below threshold)
Totally Matt:

Yeah, I've read lots of the speeches. King Jr., for instance, invokes God quite a bit. He's not a liberal, though?

Look, theism previous to the Englightenment had been used to terrify and pacify the literally unwashed masses. Marx was certainly too harsh on it, of course, as it can be very empowering for civil rights activists of all stripes. The spirit of the times, overthrowing monarchic tyrannies and embracing the modern era, cannot be described as "conservative". Of course some, most, or perhaps even all (but not Jefferson!) of these heroes were theists. Even Kant thought himself to be one. But the world became more liberal (in the classic sense), more tolerant, more open, and not because people actually started to read their holy books. The books had been there for centuries. There was something else to it.

And anyway some humanists aren't secularists. That's why some of them are described as "secular humanists". A lot of humanists (King Jr., Gandhi, Lincoln, Thomas Merton) embraced the empowering message within their respective faiths. I hardly think they were just referencing a dogmatic set of moral rules. And I still don't see how they can be referred to as "conservatives", when conservatives, according to the Godfather WFB Jr., are all about yelling "STOP!", and embracing tradition. Nothing traditional about these heroes.

Very enjoyable discussion, though. High-5!

Yes, enjoyable. Thanks! But... (Below threshold)
Big Mo:

Yes, enjoyable. Thanks! But Lincoln, a humanist? NO. WAY.

MLK was a liberal - but a classical liberal, not a modern one. He would slap Je$$ie $hakedown Jack$on till next Tuesday for all the crap that he has been pulling.

Though, I would err if I said that in absolutes about MLK, because he certainly was against the Vietnam War, and towards the end of his life, he was flirting with socialism. But his Christianity was certainly rooted in classical liberalism of the Lincolnian kind, which bears no relation to modern liberalism/humanism.

it was Christianity that... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

it was Christianity that fueled abolitionism that led to the end of slavery, Christianity that fueled women's rights, Christianity that fueled civil rights, and so on
Big Mo

Jesus was a liberal for his time. He stressed that individuals could worship in their own way and did not have to follow the traditions of the Temple. Later, the Church hierarchy centralized power and money creating the conservative religious dogma that is followed today.

Jesus was also an inspiration for the enlightenment as many of the greatest thinkers and scientists of the time (Da Vinci, Newton, the Founders, etc) held strong religious beliefs. So you may be correct that Christianity fueled those movements, but it was the liberal aspect in Christianity that did so, not the conservative which stresses conformity and adherence to the status quo (ie reading the Bible as literal instead of metaphorical).

Conservatives do not own Christianity (or any religion), therefore simply stating that Christianity was the cause of something does not mean that liberalism played no part. Liberalism and religion are deeply intertwined historically, and maybe some modern liberals have lost that, but your claim that Christianity fueled those movements does not eliminate the inherent liberalism involved in them as well.

It was also christianity th... (Below threshold)

It was also christianity that inspired certain sects of the Klan and the white power movement. But still, I actually co-sign on some of the things both Big Moe and seannyc have been saying. Big Moe made some good points about King, and I agree with seannyc about the dangers of christian literalism as well, and the inherent nature of christianity being tied to liberalism.

Wow! Nice tread guys.

These kinds of posts will keep me out of the fields and coming to the house more often :)

"And who said "blacks" were... (Below threshold)
kirktoe:

"And who said "blacks" were raping and murdering one another in the Superdome? You probably assumed the people were black because you probably assumed that rapists from a city with a poor black underclass would be black."

===========================================

Obviously you weren't paying attention during the Hurricane aftermath (no surprise there). The media constantly reported that they ahd heard that children were being raped. And the Huffington post was reporting that cannibalism was taking place.

And BTW, I will remind you again that Bush did all he could despite the refusal of Governor blanco to let the feds come in and help. Everytime you repeat the lie that Bush did nothing I'm going to remind you of this.

And if I assumed that black people were the only ones in the Superdome, it was because I know that New Orleans has been run by Democrats for decades which means blacks are screwed and would be the ones left behind.

As far as it being the Dixiecrats who blocked segregation, I suppose Robert KKK Byrd was one then? He was the one who stood on the Senate floor for over 24 hours filibustering the civil rights legislation. He was promptly promoted to speaker in the 1970's. Trent Lott was stripped of his post after his comments. When Dem's actually do the same, then you can come and talk to me about racist Republicans. You really don't know what you are talking about.

And I will NO move along as you say. You will not get a free pass from me to spew you lies and un-realities.

seannyc, that was right on.... (Below threshold)
Totally Matt:

seannyc, that was right on. Now could you please teach any viable Democratic pretender to the throne how to use those words, in roughly that order? :)

You're right, kirktoe. Bush... (Below threshold)
Totally Matt:

You're right, kirktoe. Bush acquiesced to an incompetent governor. That's leadership! You think Congress would have balked at letting him take over if it was so obvious that the local and state authorities were unable to do their jobs? Thanks for making my point. Bush failed. He totally, unequivocally failed. Chertoff was the worst, though, and that puke still has a job. I'm surprised he wasn't promoted, the way this administration does business.

And yes, the media did report that rapes were occurring, but YOU are the one who inferred that these rapists, and their victims, must have been black. That's a racist assumption, one I'm happy to let you take back before I accuse you of being a racist.

Trent Lott was stripped of his post, but is still a top-5 Senator. He should have stepped down from the Senate, but instead he reluctantly accepted a demotion, and was hurt that Bush didn't come to bat for him. Byrd was a racist Dixiecrat back when there were a lot of racist Dixiecrats. You think I would have voted for him when he was a segregationist? Do you think I would have not voted for Lincoln way back when? Are you suggesting that partisanship, which has no attraction for me, commits you to the platform held by your party members forty friggin' years ago? Again, WFB Jr. was openly racist at the inception of his National Review, and he is the godfather of the modern conservative movement. Despite that, he's a man that everyone should respect, so your attempt at making a historical point is moot.

Move along, kirktoe.




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