Constitutionalizing Family Law

| Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice |

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The Federalization of Family Law

Vol. 36 No. 3

Historically, family law has been a matter of state law. State legislatures define what constitutes a family and enact the laws that regulate marriage, parentage, adoption, child welfare, divorce, family support obligations, and property rights. State courts generally decide family law cases. But since the 1930s, Congress has enacted numerous federal statutes to address serious problems regarding family law matters that states have been either unwilling or unable to resolve, especially when the welfare of children is involved. Today, congressional legislation, decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court, and the participation of the United States in more international treaties have “federalized” more and more areas of family law traditionally left to the states.DivorceCorp - Consulted a minister and psychiatrist NOT Lawyer - AFLA Blog 2016

A multitude of federal laws now regulate and impact families; some specifically confer jurisdiction on federal courts. As a result, federal courts now hear a growing number of family law cases, especially those that involve complex interjurisdictional or full faith and credit issues. The Supreme Court has contributed to this federalization by “constitutionalizing” family law. It has repeatedly used the U.S. Constitution, in particular the Fourteenth Amendment, to extend constitutional privacy protections to increasing numbers of persons and to invalidate state laws in areas of law previously thought to be the exclusive province of state legislatures.

Internationalization of the law likewise contributes to federalization. As people and goods move freely across country borders, so do their family law issues and problems. The U.S. State Department now actively participates in the drafting of international treaties, working with the Hague Conference on Private International Law and the United Nations (UN) to address family law issues on a global scale. iinguanzo-v-rose-causes-20151The United States has ratified and implemented many international law conventions. The Supreme Court has noted the judicial opinions of the European Court of Human Rights in cases involving privacy rights of same-sex partners and the juvenile death penalty.

Congressional Action since the 1930s

For almost two hundred years, the fifty states regulated family law because the federal government did not. The Tenth Amendment left states with “[t]he powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it.” Beginning with the New Deal legislation of the 1930s, Congress has used its powers under the Commerce Clause, the Full Faith and Credit Clause, and the spending power to set policy. A brief look at the areas of child support and child protection illustrate how Congress has set the national social welfare agenda by passing laws, allocating money for programs, and requiring states to comply with federal regulations to receive funding.

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Equal Time with parents is best for children of separation – divorce.

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Equal Time with parents is best for children of separation – divorce.

Citizens have literally invited the government to control every area of the lives of children and their families.

Education is salvation for your family.” ~ Nancy Rolfe

GOVABUSE® Founder

This has made obsolete, the role of parents and grandparents and weakened the entire country. 

Parental Rights Civil Death - 2016When the governmental agencies separate any family unit,  people become desperate, emotionally unstable, financially destitute spending every dime on hope of reunification and many become physically ill due to the depression, lack of sleep etc…

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Many deal with loss of employment resulting from taking time off of work for; court dates, appointments with; lawyerscourt psychologists, evaluators, social workers, guardian-ad-litem and many others involved with cases.

Know your legal, moral and natural rights!Parent have rights - Stand up for Zoraya - 2015

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Broken Family Court System

Broken Fathers - 2015A Broken Family Court System:
‘What are You Prepared to do?’

Ignorance is bliss in some scenarios, and as a father having been involved in a contentious divorce and custody ordeal it was a luxury I found myself longing for at times. Facing a situation where one’s back is against the wall, in a court environment overtly hostile towards those who represent themselves, as a pro se litigant is a place parents should venture with extreme caution. In my situation it came to a point where in keeping up with my own case at times I began to become curious and observe what I knew to be odd behavior and activity within the court and its players.

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Psychiatric Ploys of Child Custody

Psychologist Margaret Hagen, a professor and medical industry insider, details the very real danger of this booming business.b1dfd-the2bfamily2bcourt2bis2bwrong25212521

In every state, a child can be taken away from a parent on the strength of five minutes of “neutral” testimony from a social worker. A criminal suspect’s freedom or incarceration can depend on a superficial psychological examination performed by an incompetent, overworked, or, at worst, paid-off psychologist. Parole hearings hinge on the testimony of similarly incomplete or fraudulent evaluations, allowing “rehabilitated” violent criminals back onto the street to commit more heinous crimes, with no accountability for the reviewing “expert.”

Unmasking some legal psycho-expertise as a total fraud, Dr. Hagen instructs readers to protect themselves and their families from being victimized by psychological testimony in the courtroom. In today’s frenzied legal climate, her insight and wisdom make for provocative, compelling and invaluable reading.

Rep. Tim Murphy on Plan to Reform Mental Health Care

As part of its regular briefing series, this morning the Child Mind Institute welcomed to its New York City headquarters

Representative Tim Murphy (R-PA), who provided an update on the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2015, H.R. 2646.  The Act, introduced by Reps. Murphy and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), focuses on mental health reform that would help both those with mental illness and families who are struggling to get necessary care for their loved ones.  According to Rep. Murphy, the legislation has advanced out of the House Energy and Commerce health subcommittee, and its chances of coming up for a vote in the full House in 2016 are strong.

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Child Custody for Fathers

i-am-dad-20152It has always been assume that that full custody would be given mostly to mothers but legally that is not the way it really works. Fathers have equal rights two having full custody of their children in the United States.

If you are a father who wants to get custody of your child you must prepare in the same way as if you were a mother.

The Family Court is WRONG!!You must prepare all documentation that shows all child support payments prior to your court hearing. You must prove that you are capable of providing for your child and that you are the best choice when it comes to your child.

In court always stay calm and refrain from any courtroom outburst. Your behavior can affect the outcome of your child custody dispute.

ce89b-i2bpromiseAs a father you must be able to demonstrate to the court Why you should have full custody of the child instead of the mother.

Shared custody or joint custody is usually given between parents unless one of the parents is unable to properly care for a child.

Let me tell you about Marriage - 2015If you have a good reason why you should have full custody of your child then you must be able to explain and back it up with proper documentation.

If you go to court and understand how custody disputes work by learning all the necessary information regarding child custody your chances of winning are good. That they key is to the laws in your state and know exactly everything that you need to do to win.

Don’t risk losing your children because you work well prepared when you went to court. Click the link below this video to get a free report on child custody disputes. 

Child Custody for Fathers

Click to Get Your FREE Report Child Custody Disputes. 10 Things You Should Know about Child CustodyFamily court needs to change - 2016

Child Custody for Fathers

According to the Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, “The most reliable indicator of violent crime in a community is the proportion of fatherless families. Fatherless families, in turn, are caused in part by family courts that exclude fathers from post-divorce parenting. By instituting shared parenting after divorce or separation, fathers would be allowed to continue to show their sons the right way to grow into manhood.”Courts must work toward a shared parenting norm – Miami Herald

In the release, Dr. Ned Holstein, founder and board chair of National Parents Organization said: “Unfortunately, however, our nation’s family courts prevent millions of divorced and separated fathers from having meaningful relationships with their children, which only leave their children more vulnerable to this unfortunate behavior.”

“The repeat narrative is deeply troubling,” Holstein said. “An individual who grew up without the love and support of both parents turns to unfathomable, deadly gun violence. This must stop, and one piece of the solution is to ensure children have both parents intimately involved in their lives after separation or divorce… With this in mind, I urge legislators in all states to join the family court reform movement to make shared parenting the new status quo in our society, if both parents are fit and there has been no significant domestic violence.”

Well, now. I agree to most of what Holstein has to say about this serious matter. Courts must work toward a shared parenting norm – Miami HeraldBut not all boys who grew up without the love and support of both parents turn to “unfathomable deadly gun violence.” I know of one who grew up in a fatherless home, and became the president of the United States.

Still, as a single mom who raised two sons, I know how frustrating it can be for a mom who must work outside the home and still is expected to instill all the positive male values in her son or sons. It is a hard hill to climb. It is hard to know who to trust with your children. In my case, I turned to the pastor and other godly men at my church to help me with the upbringing of my sons. It was a blessing to me as well as to my sons. I realize, though, that this isn’t the case with a lot of women. It is hard to know who to trust with your children.

Courts must work toward a shared parenting norm – Miami HeraldWhile it is true our family courts must do more to move toward shared parenting whenever there is a divorce or separation in a family, an old saying comes to my mind concerning laws to make this possible: You can bring a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. In other words, the lawmakers can make the law, but enforcing it is still something else. There is no law to make a person love his or her children. Love can’t be legislated. We simply have to trust the courts to do the right thing whenever the law is broken.

The bottom line is still this: “… Our children need both parents in their lives to thrive,” Holstein said. “For this reason, lawmakers in every state must move forward with family court reform as soon as possible.”

I spoke with Holstein, who lives in Massachusetts, by phone. He said strides are being made. Within the past year, at least 22 states — Florida included — have passed and implemented legislation supportive of shared parenting after divorce or separation whenever the parents are fit.

Source: Child Custody for Fathers

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Courts must work toward a shared parenting norm – Miami Herald

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Toddler’s Plea To Mom For Amicable Divorce

Three-year-old Tiana pleads with her divorce mother to remain friends with her dad. 

“I don’t want you and my dad to be replaced by meanies again,” adorable 3-year-old Tiana tells her mother. “I want you and my dad to be placed, settled, and to be friends.

“I’m not trying to be mean. I just want everyone to be friends. And if I can be nice, I think all of us can be nice too. I’m not trying to be mean, but I’m trying to do my best in my heart. Nothing else than that.”

Little Tiana’s plea to her divorced mother to remain friends with her father went viral over the last week and has racked up well over 1 million views. The video is sweet, cute, funny, and incredibly articulate for a toddler.

It should also give all divorced parents a reminder that they should try to do everything they can to remain amicable after they break up.

Divorce is unfortunately combative by nature. Even couples who start the divorce process on friendly terms often turn against each other after going through contentious litigation.

But amicable divorce is possible and is the best antidote to help mitigate the harmful effects divorce can have on children.

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When Family Courts Adjudicate – Remove the father.

Family courts adjudicate – divorce, custody, child abuse, child-support enforcement, even adoption and juvenile crime – depend on one overriding principle: remove the father.

Fam22The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.

Dick the Butcher, adding his contribution to Jack Cade‘s Utopian promises, from Shakespeare’s Henry VI, pt. II (Act 4, scene 2)

Greed“Most people mistakenly assume metal detectors were installed in courthouses because of criminals and terrorists,” observes Dr. Stephen Baskerville, an assistant professor of government at Patrick Henry College.

In fact, retrofitting courtrooms with metal detectors and other security enhancements was prompted by concerns over violence perpetrated by fathers whose families have been sundered and children have been stolen by what Dr. Baskerville calls “the divorce regime.”

The advent of no-fault – or, as Dr. Baskerville calls it, unilateral – divorce decades ago brought into existence a huge and ever-metastasizing apparatus of coercion, intervention, and social engineering that subsists on the destruction of flawed but salvageable marriages.Family Court AbuseAlthough divorce can be initiated at whim by either party, the system described in Baskerville’s infuriating but indispensable new book, Taken Into Custody, is designed to encourage women to file first. Not that it matters all that much: Whenever a divorce ensues, under the logic of the “no-fault” system, either parent can end the marriage and both are considered equally at fault, so the children immediately become the property of the State. Which is what this is all about.

“Now, that’s more like it!” exclaim defenders of the Total State: Another helpless man is arrested for the supposed crime of being a divorced father.

After all, writes Baskerville, when a family is broken up each child becomes “a walking bundle of cash” — not just for the custodial parent or relatives, but for the large and expanding population of tax-gorged bureaucrats who “adopt as their mission in life the practice of interfering with other people’s children.”

This system is rigged to treat fathers as dangerous and disposable. “In fact,” as Baskerville correctly observes, “it is no exaggeration to say that the existence of family courts, and virtually every issue they adjudicate – divorce, custody, child abuse, child-support enforcement, even adoption and juvenile crime – depend on one overriding principle: remove the father.”Unfriendly Family CourtsRegardless of the specific facts of a given divorce, the father is generally treated as useful only for making the initial biological contribution to conception and then to provide regular child support payments once his children are seized by the State. Oh, and we shouldn’t forget the father’s value as the object of a State-created cult of ritual execration.
Every Other Weekend is Not EnoughSince the early 1990s, the public has been relentlessly barraged with propaganda about “Deadbeat Dads” who, with the calculated malice of Dickensian villains, heartlessly refuse to provide their struggling ex-wives and estranged children the means to avoid starvation.

A staple of radical feminism, the Deadbeat Dad is also dutifully denounced by mainstream conservatives like Alan Keyes and Oliver North. The child support enforcement mechanism is a bi-partisan creation: The enabling legislation was signed into law by Republican Gerald Ford in 1975; funding has been boosted by Congress under both Democratic and Republican control; and in 2002 the Bush administration eagerly carried out a nationwide “Deadbeat Dads” enforcement sweep under a program called “Project Save Our Children” created by Bill Clinton.

The federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) and its state franchises constitute an army of 60,000 enforcement agents (all of whom are permitted to carry firearms under the “Deadbeat Parents Enforcement Act”). This means that in its successful war on parenthood, the OCSE deploys a force thirteen times larger than that mustered by the DEA, which has 4,600 agents employed in the fraudulent “war on drugs.”judge judyAt the center of this system is the family court, a legal venue that operates secretly and with plenary powers. Baskerville describes the “regime of involuntary divorce,” particularly the family courts, as “the most authoritarian institution in our society today.”

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Closed Court precludes any balance analysis of proceedings and when Jack Straw as our one time Justice Minister attempted to ‘Open’ the Court, he was met by derision by the very Judges who should have been called to account. Camilla Cavendish, who won an award for her Family Law column in The Times, was one of the first Journalists to be invited into Family Court in Ipswich and it was clear to me that at that time the same safeguards put in place for sensitive criminal cases could apply to Civil Laws, i.e. Child A, Family XYZ or even a serial number Journalists could refer to a case when given out to news of Parliament. Judges either willingly or otherwise collude with Barristers and Solicitors in perpetuating this corruption where financial gain can be achieved by their Court, rarely do they benefit either party, least of all the children involved and due to the closed nature of these Courts there is no accountability (if you appeal is it likely one Judge will contradict another). Money is the fuel to injustice and closed courts hide this fact from public scrutiny!

The divorce regime has infected our legal system with concepts entirely foreign to Anglo-Saxon law, “such as the principle that one could be decreed guilty of violating an agreement that one had, in fact, not violated,” writes Baskerville. A father who is an unwilling party to a unilateral divorce “could be summoned to court without having committed any legal infraction; the verdict was pre-determined before any evidence was examined; and one could be found `guilty’ of things that were not illegal.”

Through the family court system, “Citizens who are completely innocent of any legal wrongdoing and minding their own business – not seeking any litigation and neither convicted nor accused of any legal infraction, criminal or civil – are ordered into court and told to write checks to officials of the court or they will be summarily arrested and jailed. Judges also order citizens to sell their houses and other property and turn the proceeds over to lawyers and other cronies they never hired.”

In similar fashion, family court judges “regularly order involuntary litigants to pay the fees of attorneys, psychotherapists, and other court officials they have not hired and jail them for failing to comply.” The system is a racket by any rational definition, and it’s often operated with undisguised, vulgar corruption.

In 1999, an Insight magazine investigation learned of a “slush fund” controlled by family court judges in Los Angeles; donors included court-appointed “monitors” who received lucrative government pay-outs for keeping parents (generally fathers) accused of domestic violence under surveillance during child visitations. In Marin County, family court judges were caught funneling child support and alimony payments to preferred attorneys and other cronies.

causes.com/campaigns/93160-stop-absolute-discretion-of-family-court-judgesHowever, as Baskerville notes, “the real scandal is not what is illegal but what is legal.” Even if scrupulously operated, the family courts are not tribunals of justice, but rather “revenue-generating engines for state governments”; in fact, as Baskerville observes, states frequently depend on child-support moneys to balance their budgets. Which is why the State does everything it can to abet and capitalize on divorce – and why hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of fathers find themselves in the equivalent of debtor’s prison.

As he points out, “the astonishing but incontrovertible fact is that with the exception of convicted criminals, no group in our society today has fewer rights than fathers…. A father can be deprived of his children, his home, his savings, his future earnings, his privacy, and his freedom without any … constitutional protections.”

Baskerville has collected and documented a small but representative sample of cases in which fathers dragged into divorce court have been slapped with impossible child support judgments, deprived of the means to earn enough to pay those judgments, and then jailed for contempt. Some who have been driven to publicize their plight have been jailed or otherwise punished for seeking redress, since “in many jurisdictions it is a crime to criticize family court judges or otherwise discuss family law cases publicly.”

Biggest Civil Rights Problem - Most Urgent Social Cause - 2015

The system also makes use of extra-legal means to punish dissidents. Baskerville recounts how a State-allied virago named Liz Richards operates an identity theft and blackmail scheme through her group Family Court Reform of Annandale, Virginia. Richards circulates e-mail messages “threatening to publicize information that she obtains through government files on the private lives of politically active parents” who criticize the system. The material used to blackmail critics includes financial information pried from parents by family court judges and somehow supplied to Richards.

Meanwhile, “Deadbeat Dads” routinely find themselves publicly vilified, summarily imprisoned, and financially ruined. They are “routinely ordered into employment, the wages from which are then confiscated.” In an Illinois case, a custodial father stayed at home to care for his three children, only to be arrested under an obscure and asinine state law that makes it a felony for a man to be deliberately unemployed.

“Rendered permanently insolvent by … incarceration, [such fathers] are farmed out to trash companies and similar concerns, where they work fourteen- to sixteen-hour days,” writes Baskerville. “Most of their earnings are confiscated for child support, the costs of their incarceration, and mandatory drug testing.” In addition, “the courts are also not above summarily jailing children who fail to cooperate with the criminalization of their parents.”

How can an imprisoned man pay child support? And how can a man whose wages are automatically garnished be accused of failure to make payments? Don’t bother posing logical questions of this sort to those in charge of the child support enforcement system.

One spectacularly smug judge who richly deserves a beating gloated that he enjoyed incarcerating fathers who failed to make payments. He calls the jail his “magic fountain”: “Of course, there is no magic. The money is paid by his mother, or by the second wife, or by some other innocent who perhaps had to liquidate her life’s savings.” Some judges have seized the bank accounts of grandparents when a father has been accused of an arrearage in child support payments.

Baskerville makes a compelling, if not irrefutable, case that the “Deadbeat Dad” epidemic is a deliberately engineered hoax. He points out that “the government machinery [for child support enforcement] … was created not in response to claims of widespread nonpayment butbefore them, and that it was less a response to `deadbeat dads’ than a mechanism to create them.”

Here’s how the process works, in brief:

“A parent [generally a father] whose children are taken away by a family court is only at the beginning of his troubles. The next step comes as he is summoned to court and ordered to pay as much as two-thirds or even more of his income as `child support’ to whomever has been given custody. His wages will immediately be garnished and his name will be entered on a federal register of `delinquents.’ This is even before he has had a chance to become one, though it is also likely that the order will be backdated, so he will already be delinquent as he steps out of the courtroom. If the ordered amount is high enough, and the backdating far enough, he will be an instant felon and subject to immediate arrest.”I ruined my ex - 2015

Fathers in such circumstances are often imprisoned for having any unauthorized contact with their children, and the terms of that contact are defined entirely by their kidnappers. The children are often indoctrinated to see their fathers as their enemies – if not by embittered ex-wives, then by officials of the system itself. One inconceivably repellent example was offered by Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox, who in 2004 actually “tried to enlist the state’s children in an art competition to depict their own fathers as criminals. Cox offered free Domino’s pizza to children who participated in the campaign to create billboards vilifying their fathers.”

Once it learned of the nature of the competition – call it the “Pavlik Morozov Memorial Art Contest” — Domino’s withdrew its support. Mike Cox, who really deserves to get his back dirty, continues to afflict Michigan.
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By Baskerville’s reckoning, “nearly a quarter-million parents could now be incarcerated” on child support-related charges. To relieve the pressure on jails and prisons overburdened by America’s inmate population – easily the world’s largest – some officials have suggested alternate means of imprisoning “Deadbeat Dads.”

In Georgia, a sheriff and superior court judge recommended the creation of a literal gulag — “detention camps specifically for fathers.” A city planning commission in Pittsburgh considered a proposal to “convert a former chemical processing plant … into a detention center” for fathers.

It’s hardly surprising that fathers trapped in this Kafkaesque system are often – not occasionally, mind you, but frequently – driven to despairing acts of despairing violence. In 1996, four days before he was to receive a medal of valor for his role in rescuing victims from the Murrah building following the Oklahoma City Bombing, Terrance Yeakey committed suicide. Yeakey could surmount what he witnessed on the morning of April 19, but he was over-matched by the horrors that descended on him when he fell behind in child support payments arising from a bitter divorce.Family-Court-Where-parenting-is-cut-down-etcOther fathers direct their rage at those immediately responsible for their predicament.

“The most volatile court in the nation, where judges are killed on the bench, is family courts,” notes Bruce Howell, administrator for the Montgomery, Alabama Juvenile Court. “When you’re dealing with people’s children, they get really upset. Family court is where it all happens, and judges get killed right on the bench. People whip out guns and start shooting them in front of the courtroom.”

Ugly as it is to say so, it must nonetheless be said: At least some of the judges on the receiving end of the violence Howell describes deserve something akin to what they got – not being summarily gunned down, of course, but some combination of professional ruin and personal humiliation.

The instinct to protect one’s children is the single strongest impulse implanted in our nature by our Creator. It easily eclipses the need for food or fame; it is even stronger than the primal drive to create children in the first place. When a flawed but conscientious father whose marriage ends without his consent has his children taken from him, “we call him a `monster’ and a criminal for doing what any normal parent is expected to do” — fight back against those who have attacked his family and threaten his children, using whatever means he can muster.

e41b8-perjuryisallowedinfamilycourtsThose who employ deceit, coercion, and blackmail to separate an honest father from his children really shouldn’t expect to be immune to very ugly consequences – beginning, but hardly limited to, unemployment and irreversible ostracism from decent society. And the worst of them really ought to end up like Mussolini.

(To hear a radio interview of Dr. Baskerville in Quicktime audio, click here.)Parental Rights Causes - 2015Portrait of a policy failure: Somehow, this young father was left unmolested to raise his two beautiful children. How on earth did such a thing happen?

VoteFamily-US -- 2015

JRow Art

JROW MAY 2015 MOTHERLESS 1

Motherless #1, Motherless/Fatherless series, watercolor and acrylic on paper, 16×20 (5/30/15)

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Central Florida Judge Orders UCF To Release Study On ‘Gay Parents’

Click on the image above to read the full article.HRC: Florida judge orders university to turn over records from study used to ‘demonize’ gay parentswww.facebook.com/groups/ChildrensRightsFlorida/

HRC reports that a Central Florida judge has ordered the University of Central Florida to turn over records related to a 2012 study by Mark Regnerus about gay and lesbian parents.

Regnerus is an associate professor of sociologyat the University of Texas at Austin.  Bilerico Project journalist John Becker sued UCF for the documents.

Becker on Tuesday wrote that “Mark Regnerus’s dubious and discredited New Family Structures Study falsely claimed to show that children of same-sex couples do worse than children raised by opposite-sex couples.”

Stop Family Court Civil Rights Violations - AFLA Blog2016Here is the HRC news release and the court opinion:

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