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Science in the News > Creationists at work in South Korea

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message 2: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Thanks for that Jimmy! Passed along.


message 3: by Adam (new)

Adam | 55 comments I can't believe textbook companies would agree to print or omit that kind of stuff. If the textbook companies were the gateway and only talked to legitimate scientists I think this problem would basically solve itself. If you could ONLY buy a biology textbook from a respected publisher that only ever included evolution it would segregate the "fringe" ideas to only fringe schools.


message 4: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 334 comments Wow! Another way to control thought.


message 5: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 08, 2012 07:35PM) (new)

Rozzer Contrary opinions are going to be heard, Adam. There's nothing we can do about that. It's not an "if ONLY" situation. The best we can do, what with everyone's rights to their own views, is hope that college biology departments won't admit new students who profess creationist ideas.

As far as the general population is concerned, creationism is mainstream, like it or not. Personally, I don't like it at all, but that's really the way it is. I don't know where you live or go to school, but it's time for people like you and I to wake up and smell the coffee.

There's a large group of people out there, without horns, who really do have problems with evolution. I wish there wasn't, but that's just wishful thinking on my part and on your part. We have to figure out a better way to get the word across.

Adam wrote: "I can't believe textbook companies would agree to print or omit that kind of stuff. If the textbook companies were the gateway and only talked to legitimate scientists I think this problem would b..."


message 6: by Adam (new)

Adam | 55 comments Rozzer, this has nothing to do with opinions. This an "this is the way it is" vs. "this is how I wish it was". You can wish all you want for something to be different, but it's not. Creationism is akin to me claiming that we are not making posts on Goodreads, despite the fact we clearly are.

I know there's a large group out there that think this stuff works by consensus rather than experimental evidence, but what I'm complaining about is that text book publishers would agree with this. That's intellectually dishonest to me.

By the way, I go to graduate school in Massachusetts in the U.S., so it's not much of an issue in my region of the world.


message 7: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer wrote: "Contrary opinions are going to be heard, Adam. There's nothing we can do about that. It's not an "if ONLY" situation. The best we can do, what with everyone's rights to their own views, is hope ..."


Simply wrong. Evolution is real. Anyone who says otherwise is deluded.


message 8: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 334 comments There was a Star Trek episode in which Picard was forced to see 5 lights intead of 4 through torture methods. I think this is based on real life cases where prisoners can be forced to see what is not true. I remember reading something about that, but that was when I was a kid. Anybody recall that? That shows that a sane human mind can delude itself into believing whatever it wants to, even something extreme as seeing only 5 bulbs when there are only 4.


message 9: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer You're absolutely right, but the fact remains that deluded people, in our society at least, have a right to their delusions. The way to deal with the situation is currently being undertaken by a large team of which Edward O. Wilson is a member. They are developing (almost ready now) a multi-media, on-line, high school biology text including all modern scientific realities. Free access will permit all high school students in school systems that ban evolution to work their way through high school biology outside the limitations imposed by their local school boards or state law. For me at least, that's the best option to permit inquiring student minds to grow themselves.

Kenny wrote: "Rozzer wrote: "Contrary opinions are going to be heard, Adam. There's nothing we can do about that. It's not an "if ONLY" situation. The best we can do, what with everyone's rights to their own ..."


message 10: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer To a very great extent, the "realities" within which each of us live are created by our own brains. Read all the more recent neuropsych research. About ten to twenty percent of what we perceive "out there" is really "out there." The rest is a mass of "stock shots" already stored in our brains. It's really very interesting indeed. See, e.g., "Sleights of Mind: What the Neuroscience of Magic Reveals About Our Everyday Deceptions" by Macknik, Martinez-Conde and Blakeslee; "The Social Construction of What?" by Hacking; "Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind" by Ramachandran; and "Making up the Mind: How the Brain Creates Our Mental World" by Frith.

Aloha wrote: "There was a Star Trek episode in which Picard was forced to see 5 lights intead of 4 through torture methods. I think this is based on real life cases where prisoners can be forced to see what is ..."


message 11: by David (new)

David Rubenstein | 897 comments Mod
Aloha wrote: "There was a Star Trek episode in which Picard was forced to see 5 lights intead of 4 through torture methods. I think this is based on real life cases where prisoners can be forced to see what is ..."

It does not take torture to accomplish this. Many psychology studies have shown that this can happen, simply due to peer pressure.


message 12: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Not when they attempt to force their idiocy on my society and particularly on my children. They are welcome to their delusions if they keep them to themselves instead of claim they are reality or claiming they are science. I and every rational being on the planet will prevent that from happening

Rozzer wrote: "You're absolutely right, but the fact remains that deluded people, in our society at least, have a right to their delusions. "


message 13: by Hazel (last edited Jun 09, 2012 09:34AM) (new)

Hazel | 26 comments Rozzer wrote: "Contrary opinions are going to be heard, Adam. There's nothing we can do about that. It's not an "if ONLY" situation. The best we can do, what with everyone's rights to their own views, is hope ..."





Couldn't put it better myself.


message 14: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer wrote: "To a very great extent, the "realities" within which each of us live are created by our own brains. Read all the more recent neuropsych research. About ten to twenty percent of what we perceive "..."

Uh, no. The realities you make up in your brain may or may not be reality. We know what reality is, science and rationality tell us. It's not creationism. Evolution is reality. Separation of church and state is reality, religion will not be taught or tolerated in our public schools.


message 15: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Hazel wrote: "Couldn't put it better myself."

Yep. I love Neil!


message 16: by Adam (new)

Adam | 55 comments Rozzer wrote: "You're absolutely right, but the fact remains that deluded people, in our society at least, have a right to their delusions."

This certainly is not true. If this was true then mental wards would cease to exist entirely. When your delusion is causing harm to yourself or others, then as a society we tend to remove you from society. In this case, they are preying on children's naivete to push forward their own agenda and delude them.


message 17: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer Yes, Adam. Out here in the hinterlands things are really different from Massachusetts. And think about it for a minute: How can you or I or anyone force people to change their views? In the U.S.? With our constitution? I agree entirely with your view of the intellectual substance of the problem. The real issue is how do you persuade creationists to change their views.

It can only be done by persuasion. No one (no one at all) can issue a decree banning creationist views. It's just not going to happen. The best we can do is minimize it by offering young students everywhere easily available alternative views (those in which you and I believe). The internet makes this possible where it wasn't possible before.

Adam wrote: "Rozzer, this has nothing to do with opinions. This an "this is the way it is" vs. "this is how I wish it was". You can wish all you want for something to be different, but it's not. Creationism ..."


message 18: by Hazel (new)

Hazel | 26 comments ROzzer, I have to check, are you condoning the idea of teaching the christian creation myth in science? I'm just trying to work out where you're coming from when saying that young students should be offered available alternative views.


message 19: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer Kenny wrote: "They are welcome to their delusions if they keep them to themselves instead of claim they are reality or claiming they are science. I and every rational being on the planet will prevent that from happening."

How are you going to do that, Kenny? If your state education department goes creationist because a majority of people in your state are creationist, how are you going to stop them? Or the local school board? How is an individual, or even a group of individuals, going to stop an elected body from adopting whatever creationist views they wish? In court? On the basis of what constitutional provision? Is there a constitutional right to scientific accuracy? I don't think so.


message 20: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:09AM) (new)

Rozzer What do the court cases say about evolution/creationism and free speech? Are there lots and lots of recent court challenges to state-supported creationist views? Have any of those challenges been successful? What's the law on this issue? I read the NYTimes every day on-line. Every single day. If there had been successful court action against creationist states or school boards I kind of think I'd have heard about it. And I haven't. It's the kind of thing that would catch my eye. I wouldn't have skipped over it. And I don't remember having seen such. What about you guys? Have you? I could always have missed something.


message 21: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) There is a constitutional right to separation of Church and State as well a right to protect our children and society. That's how it will be done, just as it has in every case where it has come up. Science is reality, religion is delusion. That's all it takes to stop it and with continued work we will continue to rid our society of these delusions -- particularly in public.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 368 comments I've always wondered what the biology department at Bob Jones teaches. (Specifically BJU because I live quite near them.)


message 23: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer wrote: "What do the court cases say about evolution/creationism and free speech? Are there lots and lots of recent court challenges to state-supported creationist views? Have any of those challenges been..."

Try this: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/evolutio...


message 24: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:19AM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Susanna wrote: "I've always wondered what the biology department at Bob Jones teaches. (Specifically BJU because I live quite near them.)"

From their catalog:
All of our courses are taught within the context of biblical creation
and offer a scientific and philosophical refutation of evolution.

The Bio 300 course description:
Bio 300—Evolution and Origins.
Discussion and critical evaluation of the biology and
philosophy behind neo-Darwinism (materialism),
the intelligent design movement and special creation.
Extensive use will be made of a current evolutionary
textbook, important recent monographs, scientific
journal articles and position statements. The course
will engage students in critical thinking and problem
solving and prepare them to answer challenges to a
biblical world view regarding evolution and origins.
First semester, three hours. Prerequisite: Bio 203, Bio
208, Bio 320 or Bio 322.



message 25: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:22AM) (new)

Rozzer No, Hazel. The "alternative views" to which I refer are standard, accurate, scientific views of evolution. The kind on which you and I agree. If you're in a creationist state or county, then the "alternative views" are OUR views, yours and mine. Children in those areas, who by law, state or local, are not allowed to study real science on evolution, need to be offered alternatives so that they can go home, get on line and easily find and access entertaining and well-illustrated scientific articles and resources on what you and I consider the truth of the matter.

Hazel wrote: "ROzzer, I have to check, are you condoning the idea of teaching the christian creation myth in science? I'm just trying to work out where you're coming from when saying that young students should b..."


message 26: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:24AM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Ha-ha-ha...you're quite funny Rozzer. Keep telling yourself that. Your alternative views have ZERO to do with science and everything to do with religion and they will never fly.


message 27: by Hazel (new)

Hazel | 26 comments Rozzer wrote: "No, Hazel. The "alternative views" to which I refer are standard, accurate, scientific views of evolution. The kind on which you and I agree. If you're in a creationist state or county, then the..."

thanks for clarifying :)

I'm actually in the UK, but its starting to become an issue here too.


message 28: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:28AM) (new)

Rozzer Well, Kenny, I hope things on your planet are going better than they are for us here on Earth. It's all very well to issue (like Tyson) ringing denunciations of points of view with which we do not agree. It's an entirely different matter when it comes to actually doing something in the face of all the many layers of constitutional protection offered almost all inhabitants of the United States. Particularly in the very, very viciously polarized society of today. I really don't know the current status of constitutional litigation about the teaching of evolution. But nothing could be more relevant to what we're discussing here. Rhetoric is all well and good, but it just doesn't change anything.

Kenny wrote: "There is a constitutional right to separation of Church and State as well a right to protect our children and society. That's how it will be done, just as it has in every case where it has come up..."


message 29: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) You're right, rhetoric is nothing but talk, the law is real, so is evolution, so is science. Creationism is bogus. I would say good luck to you, but it would be a lie and I don't lie.


message 30: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 10:55AM) (new)

Rozzer Kenny, I don't think you've quite got the picture. MY views are YOUR views. I'm a card-carrying, sworn upholder of modern scientific accuracy, from the Big Bang through our ongoing attempts at universal knowledge. As far as I'm concerned, creationism and intelligent design are both ridiculous and dangerous. I myself would love to see them gone, entirely gone. And I haven't said anything different in any of my prior posts.

My problem (OUR problem) is the fact that under the rules of our society here in the U.S. at present, science cannot steamroller unscientific views. Just can't be done. Can't be done regarding evolution (in which I believe), can't be done regarding AGW (in which I also believe).

My personal view is as follows: The way our judiciary and laws are set up at present will not permit people who think as we do to exclude non-scientific views from the education system by invoking the law in the courts. So, as far as I'm concerned, the only way open is that of persuasion. And in those states and counties that have formally or informally adopted creationism or intelligent design as what will be taught, we have to reach all students who may be interested in finding out about other views.

So when I say "alternative views," I'm talking about OUR views, yours and mine, and thinking about how to offer OUR views to students legally denied the right to learn about them in school.

Kenny wrote: "Ha-ha-ha...you're quite funny Rozzer. Keep telling yourself that. Your alternative views have ZERO to do with science and everything to do with religion and they will never fly."


message 31: by Hazel (new)

Hazel | 26 comments take off and nuke them from orbit... its the only way to be sure ;P


message 32: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 11:05AM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer wrote: "Kenny, I don't think you've quite got the picture. MY views are YOUR views. ...."


You are wrong and a liar to boot based on that last posting. As I said keep telling yourself whatever you want. I can't do anything about that, but I can stop you and those like you from infecting our children.


message 33: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer Kenny, you really don't get it. For some sick reason of your own, you insist on picturing me as an opponent, and an evil one at that. I'm neither "wrong" nor a "liar." I'm not a creationist. I don't believe in intelligent design. I'm not going to "infect your children." What's your real problem?


message 34: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 02:22PM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) If the above is true (then you are not communicating well) my real problem is that you allow and apparently accept and encourage these idiots to do what they are doing, attempting to push religion in our schools. It must be stopped at every level.

you said: No, Hazel. The "alternative views" to which I refer are standard, accurate, scientific views of evolution.

which is simply not true. There are no scientific alternatives to evolution as the way life diversified. The only alternatives I've seen are thinly cloaked creationism.

If you know of these actual "Scientific" alternatives that are not evolution that resulted in evolution of species then let's have some links to the journal publications and the scientific literature in support of those beliefs.

And also I've seen many, many creationists take EXACTLY the tact you have taken in this thread so I remain skeptical unless you can provide scientific backup for your claims (or the claims you seem to be defending) of alternative theories for evolution.

I'll be waiting.


message 35: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 88 comments Take a look at my review of a book I got from a homeschooled student:

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59...


message 36: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 02:40PM) (new)

Rozzer Kenny wrote: "If the above is true (then you are not communicating well) my real problem is that you allow and apparently accept and encourage these idiots to do what they are doing, attempting to push religion ..."

I'm sorry, Kenny, if I really haven't expressed myself well, which very much appears to have been the case. I really didn't mean to be ambiguous in any way. Check me out: look at the books on my shelves, read my reviews and comments, and think about whether the books and the writing in any way correspond with someone who believes in creationism or intelligent design.

The central problem seems to have been my use of the word "alternative." I realize that it's a word often used by creationists. I used it in the opposite way. I live in a southern state and in an area where the large majority of people are creationists and Republicans. I am NOT a creationist and am a liberal Democrat. But I do indeed spend a lot of time thinking about how to get accurate science into the local schools in my county. It's not easy or simple. But for me it's very natural to think of "alternatives" as being alternatives to the creationism that's taught in the local schools around me.

Of course there are no scientific alternatives to evolution. All students, at any level, must be taught about the realities of evolution. That's my view, and I think it's yours too. Believe it or not, you and I are on the same side. There ARE NO scientific alternatives to evolution.

I'm not trying to bamboozle you or anyone else. Unfortunately, there are very many places in our country in which truly scientific evolution IS the "alternative" subject or point of view. Like right here where I am and all around me. Take it easy. We really are on the same side.


message 37: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 02:47PM) (new)

Rozzer Jimmy wrote: "Take a look at my review of a book I got from a homeschooled student:

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59..."


Thanks, Jimmy. It's a good example of what I've already seen before right here where I live. Books like that are sold all around our town in the various religious bookstores. There's only one standard bookstore where you can find books on evolution, as opposed to six religious bookstores. People here on the front lines of this debate have a really hard time presenting alternatives to the kids in school who are being force-fed creationism. And most of the adults here believe in creationism and really like things the way they are at present. I'm looking to national science big names like Edward O. Wilson and others to make available on-line real alternatives for our local kids as an antidote to what they learn in school. In a sense, I wish that the kind of book you reviewed was more widely available to people in the Northeast and California so that they understand what we have to deal with here.


message 38: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 02:52PM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer where do you live that they are teaching creationism in public schools? And what schools.

California is not a hotbed of creationist activity in the schools that I know of. Now if you were in LA or KS...

And No that book should NOT be more widely available. See how you continue to support the creationism view. Please see my last post and provide links to published articles that provide alternatives to Darwinian Evolution.


message 39: by Rozzer (new)

Rozzer I'm in Florida, Kenny. North Central Florida. Small town. Small county. Small minds. And no, I do not "continue to support the creationism view." There ARE NO alternatives to Darwinian Evolution!!!


message 40: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) And they are teaching Creationism in the Public Schools?


message 41: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 03:14PM) (new)

Rozzer Kenny wrote: "And they are teaching Creationism in the Public Schools?"

They sure are. The county school board authorized it. No one except me and a few others spoke up. This can happen. Really. And I'm SURE this isn't the only place!


message 42: by Kenny (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) I see this:

http://www.motherjones.com/environmen...

the implication being that creationism is NOT being taught currently, the bill (if passed) would change that.


message 43: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 03:19PM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) And sorry about dragging this topic away from the Korea issue, but here it the list of legislative attempts to get creationism in schools. I don't know the status of any of those as the article is a year old. I do know that some school boards and states have been actively pushing to bring creationism in, such as Tennessee and LA and Kansas is constantly working it.

http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marbl...


message 44: by Kenny (last edited Jun 09, 2012 03:22PM) (new)

Kenny Chaffin (kennychaffin) Rozzer wrote: "Kenny wrote: "And they are teaching Creationism in the Public Schools?"

They sure are. The county school board authorized it. No one except me and a few others spoke up. This can happen. Reall..."


Thank you for doing that! And my apologies for misunderstanding you.

There are a number of cases which are going to get the same treatment as Kitzmiller vs Dover I think, in the states I mentioned. I clearly am behind in my knowledge of the goings-on in FL but hope to remedy it. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.


message 45: by Rozzer (last edited Jun 09, 2012 03:37PM) (new)

Rozzer I don't know that local people all around Florida pay all that much attention to the legal technicalities of what schools can and cannot do. They know that the powers that be in Tallahassee (the state capital) are very much on the side of very conservative people (both in the governor's office and in the legislature). In fact, that's been true in Florida for several years now. And the legislature, years before Governor Scott was elected, has been controlled by the most reactionary possible right-wingers.

I really do believe that people outside of Florida should study the Florida experience before casting their votes this coming November. If you even consider not voting for President Obama or for Democratic senators or representatives, think again. We can and will replicate the Florida situation in Washington, D.C., unless everyone stands up against the insanity by voting the straight Democratic ticket in November.

If the Republicans win the White House or control of Congress, there will be a national duplication of what has happened in Florida. Don't fool yourselves: this local situation can indeed happen nationally if everyone doesn't stand up for what's right.

Kenny wrote: "I see this:

http://www.motherjones.com/environmen...

the implication being that creationism is NOT being taught currently, the bill (if pas..."



message 46: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 88 comments Rozzer is right. This is Republican policy around the country:

http://ncse.com/news/2011/12/monitori...


message 47: by David (last edited Jun 09, 2012 05:13PM) (new)

David Rubenstein | 897 comments Mod
Rozzer wrote: "Kenny wrote: "And they are teaching Creationism in the Public Schools?"

They sure are. The county school board authorized it. No one except me and a few others spoke up. This can happen. Reall..."


In fact, in Tennessee, a bill is about to be passed (or maybe has already passed), allowing public school teachers to teach creationism and climate-change-denial in the science classroom. Here is an article about it.


message 48: by Graham (last edited Jun 10, 2012 12:03AM) (new)

Graham (grahambradley) | 24 comments I'm curious what the history of this kind of fundamentalist Christianity is in Korea. Is it the result of US influence during the Korean war, or do its roots go further back?


message 49: by Eric (new)

Eric Bingham | 72 comments Speaking as someone who believes in the creation account found in the Bible, but also believes in evolution (and no, I don't feel that the two are mutually exlusive,) I thought I'd chime in with my two cents worth. I do firmly believe that evolution should be taught in the science classroom, and that creation should be taught in the religous classroom. Where I am from, (and I am a teacher,) students are offered a chance to use one of their "extra" classes to attend a religious class that is taught in a separate building if they choose to do so. They would take this "seminary" class in place of one of their other extracurricular classes IF they choose to do so. I teach science, and I do encounter some opposition at the point of the year when evolution comes up for the first time. I just tell my students that in science, we are here to answer the questions of WHAT, HOW, WHEN, WHY, and WHERE about life on Earth. I explain that science does not try to answer the question of WHO, because science can not prove or disprove WHO, and in science we are concerned with things that can be tested. I tell the students that if they are concerned about the question of WHO, it would be an appropriate question to discuss with their parents or religious leaders, but we don't address that topic in science. I have never had a problem when I have approached the issue from that perspective. I do teach evolution in my classroom, and I do not teach creation in my classroom. Having said that, I want to be clear that I do believe in a God who I do believe was in control of the events that occured when life first originated and developed on Earth. This belief did not come from peer pressure, brainwashing, torture, or any other "delusion." I have performed my own research and personal experimentation and have determined to my satisfaction that God does live. This does not make me anti-evolution, nor does it make me want to teach creationism in my science classroom. I love the Tyson quote posted above, "The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it," and I think it applies to ALL truth both in science and religion. Truth doesn't change based on popular opinion. In our science book club book Earth by Richard Fortey, he discussed how difficult it was for Wagner put forth his idea of continental drift because many scientists were so convinced that they already knew what was causing mountains to form (they thought it was the cooling and shrinking of the Earth.) If you look over the history of science, you find time and time again that scientists were ridiculed for suggesting things that were not in line with the "modern" train of thought (even among scientists.) Many of these ideas would later be found to be correct, (and some would be found to be wrong.) As scientists, we can't become so convinced that we are "right" about something that we refuse to see things from another persons point of view. Science is about finding truth. Usually that means that we come closer and closer to the truth the more we learn. There is certainly a lot of evidence to support evolution, and it definately appears to be the truth about how things happened, but that does not mean that the theory of evolution will never change. I teach my students that, as scientists, we have to accept that we can never know ALL there is to know about anything, because the minute we think we know it all, we stop questioning, stop discovering, and stop learning. Sorry for the lengthy composition, but I don't want anyone to think that all religious people want to do away with evolution. Neither do I want anyone to think that all scientists want to do away with religion.


message 50: by Graham (last edited Jun 11, 2012 01:17AM) (new)

Graham (grahambradley) | 24 comments Eric wrote: "I teach my students that, as scientists, we have to accept that we can never know ALL there is to know about anything..."

and

"I want to be clear that I do believe in a God who I do believe was in control of the events that occured when life first originated and developed on Earth"

How do you reconcile these two statements?


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