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Thread: Woman arrested for dry lawn in Utah

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    State Researcher dng's Avatar
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    I'm justSO glad we don't have a government with too much power..... This kind of stuff makes me sick. Have Americans lost all their common sense?

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    Wow, wtf is up with the po-po in Utah?
    Was our buddy UtahCop involved in this?

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    Accomplished Advocate BB62's Avatar
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    There are a number of posts about the incident on Free Republic.

    Supposedly one is from a neighbor who says that the lady is kind of looney, among other things.

    Who knows whether this is accurate - she did look a bit unkempt, though.

    Anyway, it can't be true - the media ALWAYS gets the full, accurate story before disseminating information, right?

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    Local story. Near as I can tell the media is misrepresenting.

    The woman was NOT arrested for having a dry lawn. The dead lawn with weeds is a violation of city ordinance. We can complain about overly intrusive ordinances all we want but the fact is that when given the choice to do private covenants, MOST homeowners will choose neighborhoods with covenants MUCH more restrictive than typical zoning laws. Also, note than in most cases, these kinds of zoning violations are enforced on a complaint basis. The code enforcement officers simply don't generally have time to drive around looking for violations. They react to complaints from neighbors. Which suggests to me that one or more of her neighbors got tired of the eyesore that is here dead, weed filled lawn and complained. I can't blame them. This is the kind of yard that will drive down property value in an entire neighborhood.

    That all said, again, she was NOT arrested for having a dead lawn. That obvious and clearly visible code violations was grounds for the police to stop, knock on the door and issue a citation. At that point the woman refused to give her name and attempted to walk away from the door into the interior of the home.

    Now, she is something like 70 years old, but does anyone here want to be the cop trying to issue a well deserved citation to an agitated woman who is heading out of sight into the bowells of the home? To pick up what? A phone to call her son? A weapn of some kind?

    The cop probably should have pulled the door shut and left the citation taped to the outside of the door rather than effecting a forcible arrest. But there is a huge difference between getting arrested "for a dead lawn" and getting arrested for refusing to accept a lawfully presented citation, and attempting to effectively flee the scene of the citation. I expect that once he started the whole thing anyone here would have also faced resisting arrest.

    Whether the cop was right or wrong, the homeowner handled things poorly as well. She should have accepted the citation and gone to a judge. Of course, she should have just kept up her yard. If she really can't afford the $50 a month for water to keep it alive, there are many low-water alterntives available that will not present an eye-sore to the neighborhood.

    Utah has the highest rate of charitable giving and volunteerism in the nation. For an old lady living alone it isn't that tough to find a church group or other organization willing and even anxious to lend a hand.

    My guess this isn't the first run-in she has had with code-enforcement or the city in general and she has been pushing buttons. Those who want to run their yard as they see fit with zero outside influence have no business buying a home in an incorporated, zoned neighborhood. There are unzoned, unincorporated areas of SLCo where her choice of trashy yard would be perfectly legal and would be no worse than the other trashy yards around it.

    This is all way off topic for open carry except to consider how the media (or the cop or the city) would have treated anyone here for doing the same thing this woman did except while openly carrying. The same media that is beating up on this cop would have turned it around and sung his praises had he arrested a deranged gun toter under exactly the same circumstances.

    Bottom line, I expect there are at least THREE sides to this story (the homeowner, the cop, AND the neighbors tired of an unkept yard driving down their property values) and that the media is grossly mis-represening the one side they are even bothering to report.
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    mark edward marchiafava wrote

    Media misrepresenting? Naw, not in THIS country !!! LOL. If you can't blame the neighbors and you feel your neighbors owe you something, you missed your calling. Mein Furhrer could have used your services. What a waste. Refused to give her name, in HER OWN HOME? The nerve of this woman !!! The brave officer should have shot her on the spot for daring to not comply. You got one part right. I wouldn't want to be such an officer. Nope, not me. I'd have better sense than to do something this ludicrous. Would you? "Handled things poorly?" Yep, that's exactly what that goosestepping officer did. Unlike most others in Amerika, I actually called and got the facts firsthand. The fine folks over at KSL didn't seem too concerned with this matter. When asked why they didn't provide the name of this gestapo wannabe, they claimed the Orem po-leece refused to reveal it. When I reminded them it was a matter of public record, they said, and I quote, "we're just going to let this thing run it's natural course." Translated, that means they are NOT going to hold the cops' feet to the fire and DEMAND state law be obeyed by the very ones who swore an oath to uphold and defend the constitution of the state of Utah. Benjamin Franklin was quoted as saying "the newspapers are to be the watchdogs of liberty." Obviously, the crack crew at KSL are not members of the Franklin fan club.
    Captain Dan's number is 801-229-7070


    Mark,

    This story got hashed over pretty good at the KSL comment board. If you or this woman want to live in a neighborhood with no zoning or covenants those are available. This wasn't one of them.

    The cop screwed up. But so too did the homeowner. For better or worse Utah does require you to give your name in these situations. We even have a "stop and ID" law on the books. Even if you want to refuse to comply, the way to do that is to rationally and coherently state your invocation of your 5th amendment rights. Straighten it out in front of a judge if you must. This was not a life and death or life and limb situation. It was a ticket for crying out loud and it is just plain stupid to resort to physical resistance under such ciccumstances.

    Again, the cop screwed up and I'm as unhappy because the old bitty will probably get away with not doing anything with her yard for another year as I am about any vioation of her rights. Her neighbors bought homes in a neighborhood with zoning and have every expectation that the zoning will be enforced, even against ill manner, half crazy old women. Sorry I'm not a bledding heart on this, but I've seen what one bad yard can do to property values and I'm not going to let the cop's mistakes erase the original problem for discussion.

    If this woman is really in need of assistance to keep up her yard, such assistance
    is readily available in this State. If she just refuses to make any effort at all, it is time to move into a condo or apartment without such responsibilities as yard upkeep. If she is just being a pain in the collective behinds of her neighbors and city out of some kind of spite, she deserves a citation with increasing fines and liens on her propery until it is cleaned up. Very few of us want to live next to a trashy looking yard and we select neighborhoods with zoning or CCs&Rs for that very reason. Even fewer of us can afford to donate 10s of thousands of dollars in property value to one lazy or difficult neighbor who let's a yard go to the extent this woman has.

    I'll ask again, how do you think the media would report this story if, all else being identicy but the homeowner were a 40 year old, gun toting, beer bellied male rather than a 70 year old woman?

    I'm reminded of the final refrain from "God Bless America," which reads, "confirm thy soul in self-control, thy liberty in law."

    No doubt government is too intrusive. But I am (no longer) a Libertarian. I don't care for anarchy. We are not talking about the color of a mailbox here. Have you seen the photos of this yard? It is an eyesore and trashy. A dead car on blocks would not make it any worse.
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    The "papers please" era is here:

    http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/case.html

    But I doubt that you can enter one's home and demand them.

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    Mark, you are defending this woman?

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    reefteach wrote:
    The "papers please" era is here:

    http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/case.html

    But I doubt that you can enter one's home and demand them.
    Watch the video at http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/video.html and get righteously pissed!

    LoveMyCountry ... and want it back!



    My browser is making crazy code.

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    LoveMyCountry wrote:
    reefteach wrote:
    The "papers please" era is here:

    http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/case.html

    But I doubt that you can enter one's home and demand them.
    Watch the video ( http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/video.html )and get righteously pissed!

    LoveMyCountry ... and want it back!
    Your link needs the "%29" removed from the ".html"

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    Thought for today: If we cannot tolerate those who are different from us, how can we call ourselves a free country?

    "Freedomis always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently."- Rosa Luxemburg

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    mark edward marchiafava wrote:
    I don't give a flying flip what excuses you use to justify this crap, it's still crap. And you make no bones about defending it. Heil !!!!!!

    Again, you go to great lengths to defend the concept of property values. Surprise !!!! Your neighbors do NOT owe it to you to guard, defend and increase the value of your property. Just admit it, you are a fascist !!!!! You, like most Amerikans, have taken the bait fed you by the mainstream media. You, too, think you have a right to tell, no, DEMAND that others live up to your standards. Here, try this on for size. Jefferson said you have the right to do as you please TILL you interfere with the rights of others. There is no such thing as a right to have your property increase in value.

    Hibbel, ahhhhhhhh, ANOTHER excellent example of government run amok. Poor Hibbel, standing on the side of a road, STANDING, and some cop of your calibre DEMANDS Hibbel ID himself. Forget NO person was being violated, forget NO warrant existed for his arrest. What further proof would it take to convince even YOU we now live in a POLICE state? Welcome, komrade, to the new Amerika, YOUR Amerika.

    Mark,

    Where I'm from there are a few truths:

    1-The first to stoop to childish insults has not only lost the debate, but has removed himself from polite society.

    2-While my neighbors have no duty to enhance my property values, neither do they have ANY right to steal from me or damage my property.

    3-You obey the law until such time as you can get it changed.

    4-It is unbecoming to expect the rules of the game to be changed midstream.

    NOBODY has to buy a home in any neighborhood with zoning, codes, covenants, nor other restrictions. But once you do, KNOWING full well what you are doing, you are obliged to follow the rules. Others have purchased in the same area expecting that the rules will be equally applied. In most cases, EVERYONE paid a certain premium to live in an area with such restrictions rather than an area free from those restrictions.

    Nobody here would tolerate an armed thief getting off scott free. Likewise, someone who stole from us via stealth, fraud, or deceit would be worthy of punishment. A person who defaults on a contract and costs you money will be expected to make it right and may well face various civil or criminal penalties as well. Someone who vandalized our property by dumping gasoline on our lawn would also be deserving of punishment. Deliberately allowing a yard to completely die off in a neighborhood with zoning to the contrary is no different. This woman effectively entered into a contract with her neighbors when she bought property in a zoned neighborhood. She has defaulted on that contract and in so doing has cost her neighbors money. If she had parked junk cars on her lawn on blocks, or opened a brothel or meth house most everyone would agree that she WAS infringing on the rights of her neighbors and was deserving of punishment.

    Those who wish to live without the restrictions (and protections) offered by zoning or other restrictions are perfectly free to buy propery or a home in unzoned areas. There is no shortage of such areas in Utah, nor even along the Wasatch Front. And in such areas I will defend the right of homeowners to have as trashy a yard as they like.

    But when you buy a home KNOWING full well that there are zoning or other restrictions governing exterior appearance you do NOT then get to ignore and violate those rules with impunity.

    This thread highlights the risks of posting something highly off topic. I expect we all agree on the propriety of open carry and RKBA. But there are clearly differing opinions on other areas of politics.

    I am not a Libertarian, nor an anarchist. I believe that a certain number of rules are required to allow large groups of strangers to live in close proximity in peace.

    Even where people live far apart in the country, unwritten rules have long governed affairs. A rancher who provided save haven for predators on his land was NOT going to be very popular with his neighbors.

    NOW, this all said, I do NOT necessarily agree with effecting a forcible arrest over a zoning violation. A ticket on the door, a summons to appear are probably more appropriate ways to handle this. But I wasn't there and I know enough of the media to know accuracy in anything is not their strong suite so I'm not anxious to condemn this officer based on media reports alone. AND, whatever he may have done wrong does NOT excuse the blatant zoning violations committed by the homeowner.

    IF you can engage in civil discourse, I welcome it. I'm also perfectly ok agreeing to disagree on this point. But don't bother responding again in the rude manner you have employed previously.
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    reefteach wrote:
    The "papers please" era is here:

    http://www.papersplease.org/hiibel/case.html

    But I doubt that you can enter one's home and demand them.
    Actually, according to Wikipedia at least, that area has always been here to a certain degree. Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hiibel_...ourt_of_Nevada.

    "Stop-and-identify laws have their roots in early English vagrancy laws that required suspected vagrants to face arrest unless they gave a "good account" of themselves; this practice, in turn, derived from the common-law power of any person to arrest suspicious persons and detain them until they gave "a good account" of themselves. Modern stop-and-identify laws combine aspects of the old vagrancy laws with a guide for police officers conducting investigatory stops, such as those authorized under Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 (1968)."

    And of course, for the vast majority of the population for the majority of our history as a nation any local police officer knew who you were on sight. In an era of small towns and most people never traveling outside the county of their birth everybody knew everybody anyway. Those still living in rural areas are well familiar with the realities of almost everyone in town knowing almost everyone else AND knowing almost everything about them and their family.

    Real anonymity simply was not available to most persons until the Industrial revolution dramatically increased the size of cities and the number of persons living in them. Safe, convenient, modern travel also increased the number of unfamiliar persons passing through small towns.

    Not that I agree with big brother hassling people for no reason. But it is interesting to note that it is among the relative anoymity of large cities where crime rates are the highest. Many here are old enough (and from small enough towns) to remember when virtually any adult felt entitled and even obliged to question any loitering youth.

    I personally make a point of investigating any unknown cars I see stopped in my neighborhood. It's a public road and they have every right to be there. I have every right to ask them if they need any help with anything and to very visibily get a license plate number. Generally it is just someone making a cell phone call. But I also know that word is out that this is not the section of street to think your actions will go unnoticed.

    Times have certainly changed and there is no doubt that we have lost many freedoms. But there are those areas where freedoms have increased and limitations on government power have been diminished since the days of the founding. Imagine the treatment that Hugh Hefner or other pornographers or even purchases of porn might expect to receive in 1800 New England or even the Carolinas.

    Those who penned the 4th and 5th amendments certainly objected to searches of the person or property without just cause and a warrant. But they lived without objection in a day when police officers (rare as they were) and common citizens alike were quite free to ask most any stranger to ID himself. Now, it is most often done in the context of a social greeting in a day when it was rude not to greet others. But it was commonly done.

    Charles
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    mark edward marchiafava wrote:
    Go stand in front of the nearest mirror. Repeat after me: "I think that just because I was born in the united States of America, I have the right to tell others how to live.

    I am a fascist. I am the REAL enemy of freedom here in the states, not some person of middle eastern descent. I am looking at America's biggest threat to freedom." When the 2nd American revolution occurs, I know what side to find you on: the one opposed to freedom.
    Mark,

    Go stand in front of a mirror and repeat "I am an ass." You are a rude boor, clearly incapable of comprehending civil discourse. You are an anarchist. You are also clearly dishonorable.

    If you enter into contracts intending to break them you are a thief and dishonorable.

    If you don't want to live in a neighborhood with zoning or other restrictions on exterior appearance, DON'T BUY A HOME IN SUCH A NEIGHBORHOOD. Go buy in an un-zoned area. You and your neighbors will be happier.

    But if you freely buy a home in such a neighborhood, YES I will expect zoning to be enforced. You do NOT get to open a brothel, meth house, pig farm, or even a gas station in a residential neighborhood where zoning, covenants, or other legal restrictions prohibit such things. And if you think that infringes your "freedom" tough. I'll call the cry baby a waaabulance. Freedom does NOT mean anarchy. A libertine society is not free.

    Take you arrogant, ignorant, boorish, childish rants elsewhere. I have no use for you nor your misguided, self-righteous attitude.

    I always welcome honest, civil disagreement. I have no patience nor tolerance for your attempts at bullying.

    Charles
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    Just felt that I should point out that the majority of Utah is essentially a desert. And it's been through several years of below average snow and rain fall. So it makes no sense to enforce an ordinance requiring the wasting of water. It really makes no sense to assault a 70 year old woman for refusing to be cited for said violation.

    How long has this woman owned this house? Was the ordinance in effect at the time? My parents and brother live in SLC and practice zero-scaping on their property - also technically against the laws, but becoming very popular for thereasons stated in the first two lines. Granted, sheseems to have just let the place go, but it sounds like all practicality and reason has been thrown out the window here.

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    PavePusher wrote:
    Just felt that I should point out that the majority of Utah is essentially a desert. And it's been through several years of below average snow and rain fall. So it makes no sense to enforce an ordinance requiring the wasting of water. It really makes no sense to assault a 70 year old woman for refusing to be cited for said violation.

    How long has this woman owned this house? Was the ordinance in effect at the time? My parents and brother live in SLC and practice zero-scaping on their property - also technically against the laws, but becoming very popular for thereasons stated in the first two lines. Granted, sheseems to have just let the place go, but it sounds like all practicality and reason has been thrown out the window here.
    Let me be very clear here. Her lawn was NOT brown. And she was not arrested for having a dry lawn. She was arrested for refusal to accept a citation--basically a refusal to promise to appear. The citation, was for violation of a city ordinance.

    Whether the ordinance should be changed is a fine debate to take to the city council. Whether the citation should have been issued is a fine thing to take to a judge. Refusing to give an officer your name as he is attempting issue a citation, attempting to effectively flee the scene is not acceptable. Again, I will NOT allow the mistakes of the cop, OR debates about whether or not a green lawn is a moral sin in our semi-arid (technically not dry enough to be considered a desert) climate to over-shadow what this woman did.

    And there is a HUGE difference between a xeroscaped or low-water-usage yard and an eye-sore, fire hazard, trash pit. The lawn was not "dry" or "brown. It was/is DEAD, with weeds growing through it. It had clearly received ZERO maintenance for an extended period of time. It was NOT, a xeroscaped yard. It WAS detracting from the value of the neighborhood. It was and is in violation of city zoning.

    If people want to xeroscape I've got no problem so long as what they do keeps dust down and is not an eyesore for neighbors. Heck, in an unzoned area, I don't care if the dust does blow. In fact, someday I'd like to live on a large chunk of land in an unzoned part of the State. But I paid a premium for my current home because it sits in an area with zoning that requires a certain level of yard care. I'm not about to donate a large chunk of money to a lazy neighbor who wants to turn his yard--and by extension the entire neighborhood--into a junkyard.

    The cop probably screwed up. But I do expect zoning to be enforced. I've lost good neighbors due to the lack of enforcement against illegal aliens next door to them who think a front lawn is a parking lot and that midnight is a fine time to blare latino drinking music. And at some point, a person who refuses to accept a citation likely refuses to show up in court and needs to be arrested on a failure to appear. Those who don't want to keep up a yard need to avoid buying in a neighborhood with zoning or other restrictions that require it. Drought conditions and the cost of water are NOT an excuse to pretend that dead, dry thatch with weeds growing through is xeroscaping.

    The woman fully deserves the citation and it is a shame the cops actions are overshadowing that and probably allowing her to get off.
    All experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. Thank heaven we do not permit a few to impose anarchy.

    "With Anarchy as an aim and as a means, Communism becomes possible."
    --Marxist.org

    "Communism and Anarchy [are], a necessary complement to one another. "
    --PETER KROPOTKIN, "Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal." 1898.

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    In essence mark edward marchiafava wrote: about himself
    Mark Go stand in front of the nearest mirror. Repeat after me: "I think that just because I was born in the united States of America, I have the right to tell others how to live.

    I am a fascist. I am the REAL enemy of freedom here in the states, not some person of middle eastern descent. I am looking at America's biggest threat to freedom." When the 2nd American revolution occurs, I know what side to find you on: the one opposed to freedom.
    Come on Mark Chill. When people get angry and loose it they start accusing others of having faults that they posses themselves. the above is very telling.:what:

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    mark edward marchiafava wrote:
    Keep writing. Every word you type just clarifies and confirms how much of a fascist mentality you have. Heil !!!!
    Mark you continue to prove my point.

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    mark edward marchiafava wrote:
    Go stand in front of the nearest mirror. Repeat after me: "I think that just because I was born in the united States of America, I have the right to tell others how to live.

    I am a fascist. I am the REAL enemy of freedom here in the states, not some person of middle eastern descent. I am looking at America's biggest threat to freedom." When the 2nd American revolution occurs, I know what side to find you on: the one opposed to freedom.

    The point here is that a home is a large investment, maybe doublewide in your case. Regardless, people want to at least maintain the value of their land and property, hence why they zone things the way they do and why ordinances exist. You may be the one who doesn't care if the lawn is half dead with a transmission sitting in the middle of it, but if someone next door willfully chose to move to an area with these 'rules' I am sure they do not want someone next to them who could give a damn.

    There are plenty of places to live where you do not need to abide by anyones guidlines or live up to their expectations.


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    Wow, this thread is going nowhere. Other than the toilet.


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    Why would it go anywhere to begin with, it is way off topic to begin with. Maybe if she was arrested for watering her lawn with a gun it would get more attention


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