Positive Atheism's Big List of
Scary Quotes

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)John Calvin (1509-1564)
Protestant reformer who, nevertheless, continued to work for the Roman Catholic Inquisition to the point of committing to the stake one of his own followers (Michael Servetus, a former friend and alli)

John Calvin (from the Bettmann Archive)Let it stand, therefore, as an indubitable truth, which no engines can shake, that the mind of man is so entirely alienated from the righteousness of God that he cannot conceive, desire, or design any thing but what is wicked, distorted, foul, impure, and iniquitous; that his heart is so thoroughly envenomed by sin that it can breathe out nothing but corruption and rottenness; that if some men occasionally make a show of goodness, their mind is ever interwoven with hypocrisy and deceit, their soul inwardly bound with the fetters of wickedness.
-- John Calvin, dicsuccing free will in Institutes, Book 2, end of Chapter 5; quoted from Dr Jonathon Host, personal letter to Cliff Walker (July 7, 2003), thanks for taking the time to share these findings with us! We must point out that since this is how Calvin saw the minds of humans, it makes sense that he fulfill these qualities in his own behavior.

Who will venture to place the authority of Copernicus above that of the Holy Spirit?
-- John Calvin, pointing to Psalm 93:1 in his Commentary on Genesis

[Those who assert that] the earth moves and turns ... [are motivated by] a spirit of bitterness, contradiction, and faultfinding; [possessed by the devil, they aimed] to pervert the order of nature.
-- John Calvin, sermon no. 8 on 1st Corinthians, cited in William J Bouwsma, John Calvin: A Sixteenth Century Portrait (1988), quoted from The Talk Origins Archive, "Cretinism or Evilution?: The Evils of Copernicanism" (we are on the lookout for a complete, intact version of this quip)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Thomas A Carder
Founder: ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP), which, among other things, rates motion pictures based upon such criteria as 'Offense to God' (without explaining, of course, how an allegedly omnipotent deity might possibly become offended!)

I have heard enough about even Jesus drinking wine so why is drinking a bad thing. Well, drinking is not a sin, but drinking to excess is. And if the presenting of booze in the media not a harmful thing, why then is and has there been such a push to get booze commercials off prime time TV?
-- Thomas A Carder, using the fact that a cult of self-serving moralists have found a cash cow in trying to censor television as "proof" that what their trying to censor is "harmful"; quoted from his review of Erin Brockovich

There are inevitable comparisons being drawn between Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring by the secular worldview and the Christian faith. Comparisons are not being drawn between the two movies under any other "religion" I am aware of, not the Muslim or Tao or Jewish faiths or any other faith, just the Christian faith which is under more attack than any other faith. Maybe the Christian faith is under more attack (by the adversary through the unbelievers) than any other faith because it is the "right one": the one faith that poses the greatest and maybe the only real threat to the adversary.
-- Thomas A Carder, in his analysis of the movie The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, quoted from "Capalert: The Lord of the Rings" (December 18th, 2001). Note: the parentheses in this quip were originally (and erroneously) square brackets ("[" and "]"); we silently changed them to prevent readers from thinking that the contents were our addition, which square brackets would have rightly indicated! ††

 

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Kim Cariani
Christian anti-Gay activist and all-around busybody at work in Newton, Massachusetts

Kim Cariani with camera (c)2004 The Boston Herald (color by Cliff Walker) used under the guidelines of the Fair Use doctrine of the United States Copyright Code     d:^)It's against my religion. It's morally wrong and forced in a child's face.
-- Kim Cariani, lying to her neighbors (and the world) after being ejected from a public high school campus along with another Christian antigay activist as they tried to videotape students participating in a "gay day" awareness session at the Newton North High School: indiscriminately photographing students is illegal; despite the fact that Cariani, like all parents, was told, weeks prior, about the event and allowed to prevent her own pre-adult offspring from attending (this was forced on nobody; these pre-adult students are not children), Cariani nevertheless disrupted the proceedings in a clear attempt to prevent the high school-aged offspring of other parents from being free to attend the sessions, designed to demystify homosexuality in an attempt to reduce the very bigotry Cariani wishes to perpetrate upon homosexuals: PAM doesn't wonder how many more angry parents would try to prevent their neighbors' offspring from participating in events designed to demystify atheism -- were we even allowed to stage such events; quoted from The Boston Herald (December, 2004)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)John Castellani
Executive Director of Teen Challenge, a "faith-based" drug rehab program owned by the Assemblies of God denomination and well-known for years for fudging its success rate figures

John CastellaniI'm hoping that Teen Challenge will not have to go through the licensing procedures that clinical organizations have to go through.
-- John Castellani, wanting to have his cake and eat it too, in anticipation of lucrative funding from George W Bush's "faith-based" initiative to fund religious "outreach" ministries which Bush and Castellani hope will escape the scrutiny to which nonreligious organizations much conform, to the Assemblies of God "Mission America" meeting in 2000. Bush has admitted that his "faith-based" plan is ultimately geared toward Munchbringing greater financial power to groups which seek to criminalize abortion.

We're out to tell them [addicts] what we feel is correct as far as we understand Christianity, and that Christianity is a big part of our therapy.
-- John Castellani, explaining to a panel of the House Government Reform subcommittee precisely what our tax dollars will be funding should Bush's "faith-based" schemes become law, on May 23, 2001, quoted from AANEWS (May 25, 2001) from American Atheists

"...completed Jews..."
-- John Castellani, describing Jewish clients of the Teen Challenge program after the program has enticed them to convert to the Fundamentalist Christian religion, and suggesting that Jews are "incomplete" unless they believe in the divinity of Jesus, to a panel of the House Government Reform subcommittee, on May 23, 2001, quoted from Americans United, "Faith-Based Group Draws Criticism for Telling House Congressional Committee About 'Completed Jews'" (May 25, 2001)

In a sense, it's a compliment," he told reporters. "They're not a Christian, they're still a Jew. They've just found another part of themselves. I thought I was being kind ... Evidently I'm in error, I apologize for that.
-- John Castellani, spinning his "completed Jews" remark after the testimony, and knowing full well that a "completed Jew" is every bit a Christian, quoted from AANEWS (May 25, 2001) from American Atheists

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George W Bush: Let's Fund These Guys!
President of the United States

U.S. President George W. Bush"We need to have mentoring programs energized by government, paid for by government, but who exist not because of government. Teen Challenge is a way to get people off drugs and alcohol. Teen Challenge is a faith-based program that changes people's hearts."
-- George W Bush, in a year 2000 campaign speech, quoted from AANEWS #915 from American Atheists, May 25, 2001
 

Rabbi David Sapperstein: Keep Them Private
Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism

"They engage in activities aimed at bringing them [clients] to Jesus. That's fine, but it shouldn't be done with government money."
-- Rabbi David Sapperstein, responding to Castellani's "completed Jews" remark, quoted from AANEWS (May 25, 2001) from American Atheists
 

Abraham Foxman: Always Involves Proselytization
Jewish Anti-Defamation League

"[Castellani's testimony] clearly illustrates the concern we have that there is no way to separate the efforts to proselytize from the efforts to reform people."
-- Abraham Foxman, responding to Castellani's "completed Jews" remark, to The New York Times, quoted from AANEWS (May 25, 2001) from American Atheists
 

Mark Chaves: Can't Be Shown To Work
Sociologist at the University of Arizona

"There has not yet been any research that gives clear evidence that faith-based partnerships are more effective than current models."
-- Mark Chaves, quoted from AANEWS (May 25, 2001) from American Atheists

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)The Catholic World
Roman Catholic Magazine

The wall of separation said to have been erected by the First Amendment exists only in the mind or rather in the imagination of legal students smoking the opium of secularism.
-- The Catholic World, editorial, April, 1955, quoted from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Rev Tim Chaffey and Jason Lisle, PhD
Co-authors of Old Earth Creationism on Trial: The Verdict is In

Since the Bible undisputedly teaches a young earth, when someone claims that scientific evidence proves otherwise, we can be certain they are mistaken.
-- Rev Tim Chaffey and Jason Lisle, PhD, Old Earth Creationism on Trial: The Verdict is In

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Rev R H Charles

[Those who oppose capitol punishment and war] are moral perverts and degenerates; they have lost the capacity for righteous indignation.
-- Rev R H Charles, quoted by Joseph Lewis in The Ten Commandments p. 369

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Stuart Chase (1888-1985)
Economist, writer, and MIT-trained engineer

For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don't believe, no proof is possible.
-- Stuart Chase, quoted from thnkexist.com

Common sense ... [is] that which tells you that the world is flat.
-- Stuart Chase, in S I Hayakawa, Language in Thought and Action, which says, "Citizens of a modern society need [...] more than that ordinary "common sense" which was defined by Stuart Chase as that which tells you that the world is flat." (p 29-30)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Steve Chavis
Leader of the Promise Keepers movement

Steve ChavisThere is advertising on beer, trucks and on the floors of grocery stores, so why not advertise Jesus?
-- Steve Chavis, justifying his June, 2001 publicity stunt of wheeling a large wooden cross (that is cushioned against his shoulder with thick padding) down the 26-mile length of Colfax Avenue in Denver, Colorado, quoted from the Denver Post, June 1, 2001

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936)
British author, conservative (reactionary) in his thinking; later in life (1922), a champion of Roman Catholicism

     • Check G K Chesterton's More Reasonable Side

G. K. ChestertonHell is God's great compliment to the reality of human freedom and dignity of human choice.
-- G K Chesterton, overdoing it more than just a little in his attempt to make up for the fact that "one very serious defect to my mind in Christ's moral character, and that is that He believed in hell," as Bertrand Russell aptly notes of the Jesus figure in "Why I am Not a Christian," quoted from Lee Strobel, The Case for Faith (2000), p. 169

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Saint John Chrysostom (354?-407)
Doctor and Father of the early Christian Church

Woman is a necessary evil, a natural temptation, a desirable calamity, a domestic peril, a deadly fascination, and a painted ill.
-- St John Chrysostom, from Susan H Wixon, "Woman: Four Centuries of Progress," speech delivered at Freethinkers' International Congress in Chicago, Illinois, in October, 1893, which was made into a pamphlet in December 1893, quoted from Gaylor, Women Without Superstition, p. 285

The slave should be resigned to his lot, in obeying his master he is obeying God.
-- St John Chrysostom, commenting on I Timothy 6:1-5 and other biblical mandates for human slavery, quoted from Helen Ellerbe, The Dark Side of Christian History

Every trace of the old philosophy and literatureof the ancient world has vanished from the face of the earth.
-- St John Chrysostom, rejoicing that the Christians had destroyed the Library at Alexandria and most other collections of human knowledge, leaving the world with only the writings of Christians, in Barbara G Walker, The Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets (1983), p. 208, quoted from Helen Ellerbe, The Dark Side of Christian History

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Civiltá Caustics
Italian Jesuit Journal

In a state where the majority of people are Catholic, the church will require that legal existence be denied to error, and that if religious minorities exist, they shall have only a de facto existence without opportunity to spread their unbeliefs.
-- Civiltá Caustics, editorial, April 1948, from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Jim Clack
Minneapolis, Minnesota, Fire Chief

I think it was something of a miracle.
-- Jim Clack, regardng the surprisingly low death toll resulting from the collapse of a bridge during rush-hour; quoted in Newsweek's "Perspectives" column (August 13, 2007) page 19

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Clement of Alexandria (150?-220?)
Greek Christian theologian

NOTE: We are investigating the (very high) likelihood that this is a phony quote -- a misquote, actually. -- editors

Every woman ought to be filled with shame at the thought that she is a woman.
-- Clement of Alexandria, from Lea, History of Sacerdotal Celibacy (page 320), quoted from Joseph Lewis, The Ten Commandments (page 422). Clement "stoutly maintained that marriage and fornication were not the same, but that the difference between marriage and adultery was so fine that it resolved itself into a mere legal fiction."

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William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton (b. 1946)
The 42nd President of the United States (1993-2001)

United States Flag

‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Bill Clinton Did Not Say This:

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Bill Clinton (ostensibly at an Arkansas OzFest)Complete Fabrication
"The fact that we have freedom of religion doesn't mean we need to try to have freedom from religion."
-- Fabrication, this idea, possibly a gross misquotation (below) of his statement during the Second Clinton-Dole Presidential Debate is inconsistent with everything we know about Clinton's views on religion and government

Actual Statement:
"This is the most religious, great country in history. And yet, interestingly enough, we have the most religious freedom of any country in the world, including the freedom not to believe."
-- Bill Clinton: from The Second 1996 Clinton-Dole Presidential Debate (October 16, 1996)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Hillary Rodham Clinton
US Senator (New York); former First Lady (with Bill Clinton, 1993-2001); US presidential candidate, contending within the Democratic Party)

Hillary Clinton Did Not Say This:

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Gross Misquotation:
"Radicals and atheists are destroying families."
-- Misquotation: from Andrew Browne, "China, UN Seek to Put Conference Back on Track" (Reuters: September 4, 1995)

Actual Statement:
Hillary Rodham Clinton"It saddens me that a historic event like this is being misconstrued by a small but vocal group of critics trying to spread the notion that the UN gathering is really the work of radicals and atheists bent on destroying our families."
-- Hillary Rodham Clinton: from Andrew Browne, "China, UN Seek to Put Conference Back on Track" (Reuters: September 4, 1995)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Randy Clinton
Director of Community Enrichment Center, started by the Richland Hills Church of Christ, Tarrant County, Texas

Randy ClintonIt's not appropriate to have an atheist in here. There are ways to find out whether they are believers or not.
-- Randy Clinton, saying he'll bar atheists from employment in a tax-funded charity program established by George W Bush's faith-based charity plan, the Community Solutions Act -- a statement to which the Community Enrichment Center's public information officer, Scott Hudman, remarked, "That's a dangerous things to say," quoted in the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, August, 2001, quoted from AANEWS #945, from American Atheists

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Sir John Coleridge
British jurist of the nineteenth century

No atheist, as such, can be a true friend, an affectionate relation, or a loyal subject.... A disciple following his tenets would not hesitate to debauch, or, after debauching to abandon any woman.
-- Sir John Coleridge, attacking Percy Byssche Shelly's poem Queen Mab, quoted from Jim Herrick, Against the Faith (1985), p. 15

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Kenneth Connor
President of Family Research Council

Kenneth ConnorThe first rule of politics is dance with the ones that brung you.
-- Kenneth Connor, criticizing president-elect George W Bush for picking for his cabinet people who are not hard-line right-wing fundamentalist Christians, Dallas Morning News, December, 2000, quoted in AANEWS #861, December 24, 2000

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Ann Coulter
American Conservative columnist whose techniques usually involve "mean-spirited ... name-calling" and "open inflamatory attacks" cloaked in "sweeping generalizations ... against Liberals" (Brendan Nyhan); lawyer who helped Paula Jones with her legal case against President Clinton

Ann Coulter (photo source unknown)Not all Muslims may be terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims.
-- Ann Coulter, fogetting about Timothy McVeigh and the Unibomber, among others, in her call to deport all non-citizen Muslims from the United States, "Future Widows of America: Write Your Congressman" (September 26, 2001)

This is no time to be precious about locating the exact individuals directly involved in this particular terrorist attack.... We know who the homicidal maniacs are. They are the ones cheering and dancing right now. We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity.
-- Ann Coulter, responding to reports of Muslim crowds cheering the bombings of September 11, 2001, in her column for that week, "This is War"

All we can do is politely ask aliens from suspect nations to leave ... while we sort the peace-loving immigrants from the murderous fanatics....
     Muslim immigrants who agree to spy on the millions of Muslim citizens unaffected by the deportation order can stay.
-- Ann Coulter, in her call to deport all non-citizen Muslims from the United States, "Future Widows of America: Write Your Congressman" (September 26, 2001)

Frankly, I'm getting a lot of great publicity.
-- Ann Coulter, in response to her having been canned by National Review (below) for her "invade-and-Christianize-them column" (above), quoted from Howard Kurtz, "National Review Cans Columnist Ann Coulter" (Washington Post: October 2, 2001)

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Goldberg: Crappy Writing, Crappier Behavior

"By this point, it was clear she wasn't interested in continuing the relationship. What publication on earth would continue a relationship with a writer who would refuse to discuss her work with her editors? What publication would continue to publish a writer who attacked it on TV? What publication would continue to publish a writer who lied about it -- on TV and to a Washington Post reporter? ...
     "It's true: Ann is fearless, in person and in her writing. But fearlessness isn't an excuse for crappy writing or crappier behavior."
-- Jonah Goldberg, editor of National Review Online, in a lengthy response to Coulter's "invade-and-Christianize-them column," after she had blamed "anti-Christian bigots who will jump on you for any mention of Christianity," quoted from Howard Kurtz, "Journalists Caught in Backlash Against Dissent" (Washington Post: October 4, 2001)

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)James Kevin Craig
Vine and Fig Tree Ministries (Preterist; Reconstructionist)

One ecclesiastical denomination should not be given preference by the State over others. But theism should be preferred by the state over atheism.
-- Kevin Craig, "Critique of the Joint Baptists"

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Rev W A Criswell
Longtime pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas

I believe this notion of the separation of church and state was the figment of some infidel's imagination.
-- Rev W A Criswell, interview, CBS Evening News, August 23, 1984, one of the first anti-Separationist statements from the Religious Right of today, from Richard Pierard, "Civil Religion: A Case Study Showing How Some Baptists Went Astray on the Separation of Church and State," Christian Ethics Today 2, No. 4 (November 1996): 4, quoted from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom.

The election of John F Kennedy will lead to the death of a free church and a free state.
-- Rev W A Criswell, sermon, July 4, 1960, from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Michael Cromartie
Vice president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center

Michael CromartieThroughout American history, there's been this belief that our country has a covenant with God and that a deity watches over America.
-- Michael Cromartie, appearing to justify the current attempt to tailor the American government to the whims of her Christian citizens, quoted in Natalie Angier, "Confessions of a Lonely Atheist," in New York Times Magazine, January 14, 2001

There will always be questions about personal existence and objective moral reality.
-- Michael Cromartie, appearing to grasp the precise meaning of "personal existence" and feigning knowledge of this otherwise meaningless phrase, "objective moral reality," nevertheless having snowed a New York Times reporter into quoting this statement as pertinent to a very one-sided non-discussion about the apparent increase of the presence of religion in talk previously limited to verifiable statements and demonstrable claims, quoted in Felicia R Lee, "The Secular Society Gets Religion" (The New York Times; August 24, 2002)

Survey data point to an overwhelming belief in God, but when you go down a couple of layers, it can be pretty vacuous. It's striking how many people say they're Christian but don't know who gave the Sermon on the Mount.
-- Michael Cromartie, apparently failing to see the irony of attempting to tailor the American government to the whims of her Christian citizens, quoted in Natalie Angier, "Confessions of a Lonely Atheist," in New York Times Magazine, January 14, 2001

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)William Thomas Cummings
US Chaplain

There are no athists in the foxholes.
-- William Cummings, this very popular idea: (1) falsely portrays atheists as knowing, deep down inside, that a god exists but outwardly denying what we "secretly" know; (2) falsely portrays atheists as cowards; (3) is one of several motives for Christians' fabricating numerous false "deathbed conversions" of notable atheistic heroes ranging from Thomas Paine to John Lennon (the latter fabrication was by Rev Mike McIntosh of San Diego, California, in 1980), quoted in C P Romulo I Saw the Fall of the Philippines, ch. 15

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‘The Scream’ by Edward Munch (This image is in the public domain.)Rev Charles E Curley

I proudly declare this country of ours [the United States] to be thoroughly Christian and Catholic in its very roots. And if, with the passing years, there have been grafted on to it elements which are neither Christian nor Catholic, then I say, let us take a sharp pruning knife to them and cut them off forever.
-- Rev Charles E Curley, Brooklyn Tablet, July 3, 1943; quoted from Joseph Lewis The Ten Commandments (p. 561)

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