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In the pursuit of safety, teeter-totters and swings are disappearing from playgrounds (whimpy libs)
Sun Sentinel ^ | 7-18-05 | Chris Kahn

Posted on 07/19/2005 6:59:02 PM PDT by Dan from Michigan

Andrea Levin is grateful that Broward County schools care about her daughter's safety. But this year when they posted a sign that demanded "no running" on the playground, it seemed like overkill.

"I realize we want to keep kids from cracking their heads open," said Levin, whose daughter is a Gator Run Elementary fifth grader in Weston. "But there has to be a place where they can get out and run."

Broward's "Rules of the Playground" signs, bought from an equipment catalogue and displayed at all 137 elementary schools in the district, are just one of several steps taken to cut down on injuries and the lawsuits they inspire.

"It's too tight around the equipment to be running," said Safety Director Jerry Graziose, the Broward County official who ordered the signs. "Our job was to try to control it."

How about swings or those hand-pulled merry-go-rounds?

"Nope. They've got moving parts. Moving parts on equipment is the number one cause of injury on the playgrounds."

Teeter-totters?

"Nope. That's moving too."

Sandboxes?

"Well, I have to be careful about animals" turning them into litter boxes.

Cement crawl tubes?

"Vagrants. The longer they are, the higher possibility that a vagrant could stay in them. We have shorter ones now that are made out of plastic or fiberglass."

Broward playgrounds aren't the only ones to avoid equipment that most adults remember. Swings, merry-go-rounds, teeter-totters and other old standards are vanishing from schools and parks around the country, according to the National Program for Playground Safety.

"Kids aren't using them the way they're supposed to," said the agency's director, Donna Thompson, who led a national effort to get rid of animal swings two years ago. "I'm pleased that a lot of these are disappearing."

(Excerpt) Read more at sun-sentinel.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Florida
KEYWORDS: ambulancechasers; childhood; crybabies; handwringers; liberals; playground; safety; schools; whimps
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No, this isn't the onion. This is just sad and sickening how all these pansies, blissninnies, liberals, and lawyers are turning our kids into whimps.
1 posted on 07/19/2005 6:59:04 PM PDT by Dan from Michigan
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To: Dan from Michigan
I was wondering where the teeter tooter and the hand turned merry-go-round went.

Well, at least my daughter had a chance to experience this DANGEROUS play stuff.

This is ridiculous! If they don't kill the babies through abortion they want to make sure they have NO fun under the guise of safety. If they are frisky - load em up with Ritalin or a similar drug. Aren't liberals grand?
2 posted on 07/19/2005 7:04:18 PM PDT by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God).)
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To: Dan from Michigan

I remember the dumbing-down of playgrounds that occurred from the late 1970s straight through the 1980s. I can't believe they could possibly get any softer.


3 posted on 07/19/2005 7:06:21 PM PDT by SteveMcKing
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To: Dan from Michigan

Stupid! Just stupid...! And then these same stupid lib weenies go and complain about child obesity and lament their lack of exercise! Stupid, I say!


4 posted on 07/19/2005 7:07:02 PM PDT by Virginia Ridgerunner ("Si vis pacem para bellum")
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To: Dan from Michigan

I played Baseball when I was a kid. My best friend and I played on the same team when we were kids. We even rode to the hospital together once due to injuries sustained in the same game.


5 posted on 07/19/2005 7:08:49 PM PDT by cripplecreek (If you must obey your party, may your chains rest lightly upon your shoulders.)
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To: Dan from Michigan
"Kids aren't using them the way they're supposed to,"

Oh no - creativity in a child! Squash that independence now, before they grow up to be pill and therapy-free...

(They may even vote in their own interest someday!)

6 posted on 07/19/2005 7:09:48 PM PDT by SteveMcKing
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To: SteveMcKing

Oh the horror.


7 posted on 07/19/2005 7:11:14 PM PDT by cripplecreek (If you must obey your party, may your chains rest lightly upon your shoulders.)
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To: SteveMcKing

They wonder why the kids are fat. But I guess it allows all those sue happy trial lawyers a chance to cash in twice. Once from the school district and the equipment manufacturers for having dangerous equipment and then from the fast food folks for letting the kids get porky.


8 posted on 07/19/2005 7:15:42 PM PDT by Burf
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To: Dan from Michigan
""no running" on the playground,"

LOL! Stupid ignorant morons.

9 posted on 07/19/2005 7:17:34 PM PDT by spunkets
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To: Dan from Michigan
Remember swing around on the chains of the 'maypole'?
Dangerous as hell, and we LOVED it.

When I was in the 6th grade or so (approx. 1981?) , I remember it being taken down from my former elementary school's playground because some idiot kid had broken his arm.

10 posted on 07/19/2005 7:17:53 PM PDT by Constitution Day (I am the Sultan of Oom-Papa-Mow-Mow.)
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To: nmh
Geez, in the fifties and early sixties we'd spend hours getting the creaky old merry-go-round up to a speed that made it worth jumping on or off with the risk of wiping out into the sand.

I've wondered why Gen Xers on this forum all seem to be such whiners. I just realized that it was when they were kids that all the cool (and risky) stuff started to disappear, they were raised not to take chances. I hope the Hindus got the re-incarnation thing wrong, I'd hate to come back to such a pussified world.

11 posted on 07/19/2005 7:22:11 PM PDT by wtc911 (see my profile for how to contribute to a pentagon heroes fund)
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To: Dan from Michigan

That pretty much explains why obesity is such a problem for children and teenagers. Of course the health problems associated with obesity are responsible for taking more life expectancy than playground accidents.


12 posted on 07/19/2005 7:23:37 PM PDT by Paleo Conservative (Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Andrew Heyward's got to go!)
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To: Dan from Michigan
Remember swinging around on the chains of the 'maypole'?

Correction. GRRR.

13 posted on 07/19/2005 7:25:25 PM PDT by Constitution Day (I am the Sultan of Oom-Papa-Mow-Mow.)
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To: Dan from Michigan
A third of the way down the sign, a stick-figure is pictured running with a red slash through the middle, followed by: "No running, pushing or shoving."

"I don't know if that would mean much to a 6-year-old," Bartleman said of the signs. "How does a child know what's appropriate for their age group?"

I'm sure the lawyers already have that question answered.

14 posted on 07/19/2005 7:42:01 PM PDT by scott7278 (Before I give you the benefit of my reply, I would like to know what we are talking about.)
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To: Dan from Michigan

The plastic child safe playground equipment in our local parks are jokes. The kids can't slide down the slide because it isn't slippery enough. They have to pull themselves down with their legs. They almost didn't put the merry go round back in the park when they did a make-over. Thankfully they heard about it and put it in. They did add a skirt that probably does make it more safe. But at least the kiddos can still get dizzy.


15 posted on 07/19/2005 7:44:54 PM PDT by TXBubba ( Democrats: If they don't abort you then they will tax you to death.)
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To: Dan from Michigan

My granddaughter tripped on a raised tree root. She fell and knocked out her four front teeth.

Time to rid playgrounds from those dangerous, menacing trees.

Who ever said that living one's life would be without risks?


16 posted on 07/19/2005 7:45:15 PM PDT by bannie (The government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend upon the support of Paul.)
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To: SteveMcKing
"Kids aren't using them the way they're supposed to,"

Could also read...no parents are supervising.

17 posted on 07/19/2005 7:46:09 PM PDT by TXBubba ( Democrats: If they don't abort you then they will tax you to death.)
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To: Constitution Day

Slap you in the face with a tetherball. WHAP!


18 posted on 07/19/2005 7:51:03 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Dan from Michigan

Playgrounds are being phased out and replaced by video games. And people wonder why kids are getting fat
And people wonder why kids seem lazy?
Because there is no motivation. Parents need to teach kids that life is always faced with risks, but fear will eliminate motivation.

Life is more than a remote control and a bag of potato chips. But we are protecting the children from bumps and scrapes and all the things that hurt their self esteem.
Welcome to the "wussification of America".


19 posted on 07/19/2005 7:52:27 PM PDT by o_zarkman44
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To: Dan from Michigan
Sheesh.

When I was a kid, we would swing as high as possible so we could 'bail out'. Sometimes we'd swing so high we'd get too much slack in the chain and get dumped out on our faces. 'Jungle Gym' sets were where some kids got teeth knocked out; tether ball would slap us silly if we weren't watching, and all of these fun things were open and available after school to play on - unregulated! - oh the horrors...

Life is short. Play hard.

20 posted on 07/19/2005 7:54:37 PM PDT by pigsmith (But I was a kid in the 60s, long before we were 'saved' by Politically Correct weenies.)
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Tetherball:

Flippin' SWEET!

21 posted on 07/19/2005 7:54:44 PM PDT by Constitution Day (I am the Sultan of Oom-Papa-Mow-Mow.)
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To: Dan from Michigan

I reckon the iron monkey bars set in a concrete pad that I grew up with are now out of the question.


22 posted on 07/19/2005 7:57:12 PM PDT by aomagrat
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To: Dan from Michigan

We had a see saw in our back yard and my rotten brother would get me way up in the air ---- and then jump off. Or give it a big bump and I'd leave the seat. Thank goodness they don't have them in playgrounds Think of the suits!!

When the swings went from those great flat wooden ones to the stupid things they have now, the end was in sight.

I loved the swings better than anything. I'd get it as high as I could and then jump off and go sailing.

I hear the jungle gym is going, too. My husband and I used to play on it.


23 posted on 07/19/2005 8:03:37 PM PDT by Exit148 (Founder of the Loose Change Club. Every nickle and dime counts!!)
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To: Dan from Michigan

In Europe they had, or have, self-powered little ferris wheels. Never saw one in the USA, even pre-nanny state. Lemee find a pic...


24 posted on 07/19/2005 8:05:52 PM PDT by dagnabbit (Vincente Fox's opening line at the Mexico-USA summit meeting: "Bring out the Gimp!")
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To: Constitution Day
"Yeeee-Freepin'-Haw!"


25 posted on 07/19/2005 8:06:21 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: aomagrat

We had a good set of monkey bars at my school. In the 5th grade, we were trying to see who could skip the most bars and grab the bar and hold on. I cleared four bars. I tried to clear five bars and missed. Face first in the tanbark. I couldn't see for a few minutes and had a face full of splinters. We made sure the teacher didn't notice, we didn't want to get in trouble.


26 posted on 07/19/2005 8:08:07 PM PDT by dc27
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To: Dan from Michigan
Definition of a liberal: "Kids aren't using them the way they're supposed to," said the agency's director, Donna Thompson, who led a national effort to get rid of animal swings two years ago. "I'm pleased that a lot of these are disappearing."
27 posted on 07/19/2005 8:09:38 PM PDT by ran15
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To: Dan from Michigan

And they wonder why there's an epidemic of childhood obesity. These kids are told they should exercise more, but then they're barely allowed to move!


28 posted on 07/19/2005 8:09:40 PM PDT by GovernmentShrinker
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To: dagnabbit

Nope, not it.

29 posted on 07/19/2005 8:10:00 PM PDT by dagnabbit (Vincente Fox's opening line at the Mexico-USA summit meeting: "Bring out the Gimp!")
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To: nmh

Some of us remember hard-seated swings, that we could eject ourselves from at the top of the arc.


30 posted on 07/19/2005 8:11:20 PM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilisation is aborting, buggering, and contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: ArrogantBustard

In many inner cities, the swings and teeter-totters at school have been replaced by 9mm handguns.


31 posted on 07/19/2005 8:13:41 PM PDT by ReadyNow
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To: dagnabbit

This is the Netherlands. Could you imagine the lawyers allowing a US playground with moving items on WATER?

32 posted on 07/19/2005 8:14:58 PM PDT by dagnabbit (Vincente Fox's opening line at the Mexico-USA summit meeting: "Bring out the Gimp!")
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To: ArrogantBustard
I just bought my boys a motorbike, each. Honda 80 for the ten- yo, yamaha 125 for the 15-yo.

Oh, well.

33 posted on 07/19/2005 8:19:01 PM PDT by patton ("Fool," said my Muse to me, "look in thy heart, and write.")
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To: patton

Good show!


34 posted on 07/19/2005 8:21:45 PM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilisation is aborting, buggering, and contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: Dan from Michigan

When I was 8 I ran intop the swing area and got whacked in the scalp with a galvanized steel baby swing. 8 stitches.

I learned to be more careful after that.


35 posted on 07/19/2005 8:22:01 PM PDT by finnman69 (cum puella incedit minore medio corpore sub quo manifestus globus, inflammare animos)
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To: Dan from Michigan

The playground near my house growing up had a hand turned merry-go-round, wooden seats on the swing sets, a see-saw, and a twenty foot high sliding board. Except for a small grassy area near the merry-go-round, the whole playground was concrete. A few years ago, they dug up all the concrete areas, except for the area near the basketball court, and put down mulch. The city ran out of funds to finish getting the park "up to code", even though the neighborhood privately raised over $80,000 to pay the city employees to do the work. (BIG mistake! The city owns the land and wouldn't let them hire private contractors.) What a mess!


36 posted on 07/19/2005 8:26:42 PM PDT by toothfairy86
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To: Slings and Arrows; scab4faa; Blue Champagne; rockabyebaby; Poser; A Balrog of Morgoth; albee; ...

Let me know if you would like on or off the WTF! ping list.

37 posted on 07/19/2005 8:36:31 PM PDT by Xenophobic Alien ("It gives me a headache just trying to think down to your level.")
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To: toothfairy86
" twenty foot high sliding board"

That takes me back . . . in the summer, we'd always ride our bikes to the school playgrounds in our neighborhood and beyond. The ones with big sliding boards (called slides in our neck of the woods) were the favored playgrounds. They were grand fun, as long as you were careful of the sun heating up the metal! I never see those around in our part of SE Pennsylvania. Either they were never common here or they've mostly been removed due to safety concerns.

38 posted on 07/19/2005 8:37:46 PM PDT by Think free or die
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To: ArrogantBustard
Blush, blush ... so do I.

Okay I was born in the 50's.

Had a GREAT childhood - dodge ball, tag, rope climbing as part of gym class and all those other unacceptable games.
39 posted on 07/19/2005 8:47:40 PM PDT by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God).)
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To: Dan from Michigan
The local elementary school put in a $100,000 foam unit so that kids with wheelchairs can access the playground equipment, even though the last wheelchair bound student at the school was back in 1970 (and who had zero problems getting to the swings through the sand.)

All told, the school spent $500,000 on upgrades to the school facilities to accommodate the disabled; half of the school's toilets were removed to make room for larger stalls, teachers now have a mike so that hearing impaired students can hear them (none in the school), etc.

When the district brought up funding problems, I stood before the board and outlined how much the district wasted in all these upgrades. They pointed out that this was to make the school accessible to disabled students. I laughed at them and pointed out that no one who was in a wheel chair or on crutches could possibly open the steel classroom doors.

All told, the district spent eight million dollars on accessibility upgrades for all the district schools.

Eight million dollars, just dropped down the drain. Removed during this project was any playground equipment that wasn't disabled friendly. Every sandbox was pulled out. Every punch ball stand.

Anytime I hear a teacher in my district complaining about their salary, I point out to them the money they happily wasted on these upgrades. Yeah, sure, I could possibly see upgrading one school (and actually having someone who was disabled TRY IT OUT) but upgrading everywhere? Just money down the drain.

Nationwide, this is but the tip of the billion dollar iceberg. Thank you ADA for ensuring that good money would be drained from our schools.
40 posted on 07/19/2005 8:57:20 PM PDT by kingu
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To: toothfairy86

Character-building recess games and activities at my 1970's elementary school playground: 1. Underdog- you pushed a person on a swing higher and higher until you ran underneath them and yelled "Underdog" 2. King of the Mountain- a parking lot worth of snow is plowed into a massive pile which smaller kids were pushed off by bigger kids, 3.Red Rover- two lines of kids with hands locked face eachother- "Red Rover, Red Rover, send Jimmy right over" at such time Jimmy was to sprint over and try to break through the line (or get clothes-lined trying), 4. All the tetherballs had a nice, soft cotton rope to which a grossly overinflated ball was attached with a pronounced metal spring clip, 5. Joust! two people tried to knock the other off a four inch wide balance beam that was 24 inches off the ground (asphalt). I remember lots of good times, the occassional cold compress, and no lawsuits...


41 posted on 07/19/2005 9:10:46 PM PDT by philled
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To: Diddle E. Squat

Nope. Sorry. That horse is so bright it could cause retinal damage.


42 posted on 07/19/2005 9:15:40 PM PDT by papertyger (Power concedes nothing without a demand. Frederick Douglass)
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To: dagnabbit

Were these young people arrested for attempted teeter-tottering?


43 posted on 07/19/2005 9:17:04 PM PDT by papertyger (Power concedes nothing without a demand. Frederick Douglass)
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To: Dan from Michigan

One of my favorite Bill Cosby routines is off the "Wonderfulness" album. Well, actually, several of my favorite Cos routines are off that album, but the one I have in mind is where he discusses how he thought as a kid that the playground was intentionally designed to kill him and his friends. Like the swings. Like the spinning wheel. ("Aaaaaaggh!!!") Like the monkey bars. ("Bonk! Oh, oh, oh...) Like the teeter-totter. ("A lot of kids never had a chance to have a low voice because of the teeter-totter...)


44 posted on 07/19/2005 9:17:23 PM PDT by RichInOC ("...the chicken heart grew...")
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To: Xenophobic Alien

OK, I give up. How in the world did I ever make it a full half-century without killing myself while having a little fun?


45 posted on 07/19/2005 9:32:10 PM PDT by SmithL (There are a lot of people that hate Bush more than they hate terrorists)
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To: TXBubba
When she was about 10, our daughter went on an exchange visit to Ures, Mexico with kids from her school. We stopped off at a playground in Hermosillo for some exercise. In that playground was the most amazing slide. Instead of having a smooth curved ending like our gringo slides, it was two straight pieces of metal welded at an angle like this: "_/". The kids convinced their least favorite Spanish teacher to give it a try. She hit the bottom with a resounding thump, and not long after we returned from the trip she announced her resignation from the school.

I wonder if Mexican kids are so short because of these slides. ;-)

46 posted on 07/19/2005 9:35:17 PM PDT by AZLiberty (French: The language of diplomacy, except for the French)
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To: Dan from Michigan
Two fond memories of childhood (circa 1981-1986):

1. Our favorite game was Suicide. This is a variation on handball where you must keep the ball in play. If you "boggle" or drop the ball, you need to run to the wall or risk getting thrown out. In Suicide, btw, you are thrown out when the person who grabs the ball after you dropped it throws it HARD at your back.

2. My kindergarter teacher, Mrs. Mayer, allowed us to play with saws and hammers.

47 posted on 07/19/2005 9:38:03 PM PDT by Clemenza (JJesus CChrist MMade SSeattle UUnder PProtest)
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To: Clemenza

Fresh air, dodgeball and soccer...these are the memories that grade school recess is made of.


48 posted on 07/19/2005 9:48:26 PM PDT by Ciexyz (Let us always remember, the Lord is in control.)
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To: Dan from Michigan

Actually, what is happening is a rational reaction to a civil tort system gone completely haywire. Look to the trial lawyers and their greedy parents for your playground equipment. They got it in their settlements.


49 posted on 07/19/2005 9:56:43 PM PDT by NonValueAdded ("Iraq is the bug light for terrorists" (Mike McConnell 7/2/05))
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To: Dan from Michigan

You are right....The teeter totter and swings were my favorite items on the playground.....and I actually lived through my childhood!! Gasp!!!!!! I also rode a bike with no helmet!!!!


50 posted on 07/19/2005 10:00:25 PM PDT by savagesusie
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