299 Comments

I understand why these leaders are so adamantly opposed to associating with such sinners. The danger is real. I’ve witnessed what can happen to people’s ideologies when they’re forced to deal with the actual humanity of such sinners. It’s easy to condemn gay or trans faceless “others.” It’s much different when dealing with one’s own kid or nephew/niece or grandkid. When your best friend’s child is in a happy enduring gay relationship and your own heterosexual child stumbles from one terrible relationship to the next despite having the correct beliefs about Jesus, it’s hard to avoid an existential crisis and a realignment of one’s theology.

These leaders have no doubt seen what I’ve seen, rigid homophobic worldviews shatter in the presence of joy, and it makes them tremble.

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As you say, their ideology is often divorced from the real world consequences of their beliefs.

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DICK CHENEY WAS VIRULENTLY ANTI-GAY. Then his daughter came out and married a woman. Now................

Sadly, Covenant House and many others are now forced to shelter those kicked out of god-fearing, hate filled homes harboring hatred of anyone "daring" to be different.

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That isn't uncommon with conservatives. It seems to be the only thing that changes their mind. I'm not sure if I should condemn or congratulate them for it.

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Conservatives as a rule cannot identify with any issue they are not being personally affected by.

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I recently listened to the podcast "Things Fell Apart" by Jon Ronson. (I highly recommend it.) In one episode (S1 Ep 3), he talks about the time in 1985 when Tammy Faye Bakker interviewed Steve Pieters, a gay pastor with AIDS, on her television show. The impact that interview had on the christian community was phenomenal. There were a lot of christians who's lives were impacted by AIDS (via family members) and they were worried about the fate of their souls. (Yes, I don't believe any of that stuff, but caring in the way that they know best is more important than the doctrine.) Prior to that, AIDS was a non-topic nationally with even Reagan not mentioning it because "It was god's punishment on gay men" according to other hateful christians leaders like Oral Roberts and Jerry Falwell.

Ronson also interviews Pieters as well (Pieters passed away last year). As much as I dislike the Bakkers, credit where credit is due, her action actually did live up to christian values that are so hollow today.

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Did he publish his resent research in a book? I really liked "Them" and "The men who stared at goats."

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I'm not sure. It would be great if he does. I've got several of his books as well.

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Jan 29·edited Jan 29

Yep.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has had an older relative offer a large cash amount to their kid's fiance to go away and never come back. Then attend the wedding, then grow to like or at least tolerate their son/daughter in-law over the next few years. These fundies act like it's the end of the world if you continue to treat family as family even while you disagree with their choices. But that's probably one of the most common/shared/ubiquitous experiences humans have. Pretty much every extended family has that or a very similar story. But as you say, they are so afraid of that "then we accept or at least tolerate" third step happening, their only choice is to irrationally decide on no contact.

And, I would definitely drive an alcoholic to the bar, if I had tried to talk them out of it, failed, and they were heading out the door with their car keys in hand. You can fix alcoholic later - you can't fix dead. Driving them also lets you know where they go, talk to the bartender, and give him $20 to call you to come pick your friend up when they start to go overboard.

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Bigoted Christians ostracize bigoted Christian for being insufficiently bigoted. In other words, there is no hate like Christian love.

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That's what gets me. Dude will be lionized by some LGBTQIA+ people and some of our allies, but the reality is that he's still a bigot. I mean, he's not even recommending the woman attend her grandson's wedding ceremony because she loves him. It's all about "maintaining her witness." If I was the grandson, granny wouldn't be welcome anyway. Not with an attitude like that.

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I read a story by young woman who was a lesbian. Everyone in her family knew, except Grandma, who was very vocal about her dislike of LGBTQ people. Everyone was careful around Grandma not to out her. As she grew, her grandmother was becoming more persistent about finding a nice, young man to settle down with. One day, they were sitting on the front porch when Grandma asked her when she was going to find a good man. She responded by saying, "When the right woman comes along." There was a long silence. Finally, Grandma said, "Well, then she's going to be the luckiest woman in the world."

Many people change their attitudes when it gets real. Not always this easily, and not always for the best. But a lot do. That's why it's so important for society to make it safe for people to be able to come out. A wedding is an important enough event that it can have an impact on granny. Just seeing how normal everyone else treats the event can have a huge impact.

That's also why there is such a backlash against the LGBTQ community by christian leaders. christianity is lashing out, it's survival is at risk. It's still the majority religion in the US, but it's diminishing, even amongst christians. A lot of believers don't even attend, or barely attend, church.

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Fundamentalists and authoritarians need an object for the hatred they cultivate. The right wing media and the fundy hate groups are fanning the flames, trying to turn it into a society-wide conflagration. This kind of hatred requires that they dehumanize and demonize the objects of their loathing.

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Very true. Every demagogue and hate leader will utilize a marginalized group to stoke fear that only they can provide the solution to. It's a time-tested tactic that always works. Always. Religion is a very effective tool to stoke that fear since it requires very little effort. It can bring more people into the fold and will make current followers clutch to the leader more, reinforcing their control over them. Many a leader has reframed their greed as a religious war to stoke public support for their war.

That's why it's so important to humanize people. Showing LGBTQ people as having all the same problems as the "normies" stokes empathy for them. (Empathy being understanding the person.) When they are shown as normal, particularly on TV, one common tactic is to ask, "Why are they shoving their lifestyle down our throats." I've heard this on one occasion at work. It wasn't the place to address it.

The thing is it's such an effective tool that people that aren't haters will be affected by this highlighting. That's why they bring up single instance is shows up in movies. Or with beer. People hold many thoughts that they aren't even their own. That's the insidiousness of that tactic. It's also why critical thinking is so important.

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"The Horrific True Story That Rocked the Nation!"

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You could warn people before posting pictures of slugs wearing human suits !

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Yeah but we don't know how much of that is cover. I'm willing to bet that he thinks it's fine to love your "wayward" kid or grandkid, but he knew saying that would be a bridge too far for his audience so he stopped at "go, for Jesus reasons." Huge miscalculation of his audience, but that's a different issue.

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I'm going to take the man at his word rather than making unfounded speculations in the hopes of making him seem better than he presents himself to be. But you do you.

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As near as I can tell, about the last thing today's evangelicals care about is actual morality. They prefer to use their religion as a cudgel to punish everyone they disagree with. They value goose-stepping conformity above all else, and their reaction to this radio preacher's advice to this grandmother is an example of it.

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"𝑇ℎ𝑖𝑠 𝑖𝑠 𝑎 𝑐𝑟𝑖𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑎𝑙 𝑖𝑠𝑠𝑢𝑒 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑏𝑜𝑑𝑦 𝑜𝑓 𝐶ℎ𝑟𝑖𝑠𝑡 𝑟𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡 𝑛𝑜𝑤," 𝑉𝑖𝑡𝑎𝑔𝑙𝑖𝑎𝑛𝑜 𝑡𝑒𝑙𝑙𝑠 𝐴𝐹𝑁. "𝐴𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑠 𝑖𝑠 𝑛𝑜𝑡 𝑜𝑛𝑙𝑦 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑤𝑟𝑜𝑛𝑔 𝑐𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑠𝑒𝑙, 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑖𝑡 𝑖𝑠 𝑑𝑒𝑒𝑝𝑙𝑦 𝑑𝑖𝑠𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑏𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝐶ℎ𝑟𝑖𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑎𝑛𝑠 𝑤ℎ𝑜 𝑤𝑎𝑛𝑡 𝑡𝑜 ℎ𝑜𝑙𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑙𝑖𝑛𝑒 𝑎𝑔𝑎𝑖𝑛𝑠𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑐𝑢𝑙𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑎𝑙 𝑖𝑚𝑝𝑎𝑐𝑡 𝑜𝑓 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝐿𝐺𝐵𝑇𝑄 𝑎𝑔𝑒𝑛𝑑𝑎."

Really? One would think that the critical issue is that this bigotry on display is contributing to the permanent mass exodus of young people from the church.

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Jan 27·edited Jan 27

The 'body of Christ' reeks from being a 1,991 year old, rotting corpse somewhere in the Middle East--likely buried underneath a mosque where young, aspiring suicide bombers are now praying to Allah. It's poetic justice at its finest--believe in THAT, motherfuckers.

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Jan 27·edited Jan 27

They have not yet internalized the fact that they are no longer in charge of (major influencers on) society.

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Because they are more interested in being the scolds of society than in retaining church members.

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Pretty sure that Jesus didn't give two shirts about cultural agendas. It was all about the individual choosing to do individual 'right' things. Of course that makes total sense as preparation for the very-soon end of the world.

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“And people need to work out their own salvation with fear and trembling.”

Okay. There’s so much in this little sentence that is just so … ugh.

Yes, people need to just deal with their own salvation. Stop getting involved in other people’s salvation. You cannot save them, they have to do it for themselves. Even though he’s not saying this really, he says you have to witness to them so they can save themselves. But I am saying that has nothing to do with your own salvation and others don’t appreciate you getting involved in theirs.

What is so appealing to be saved by someone that requires you to be so fearful you tremble just thinking about it? It does not come off as “be fearful to not be saved” it comes off as “be afraid of your savior.” All the time, every reference to fear god, is about his being is what should scare you. What do you call a father that instills fear of his children with his presence? Abusive. Living with people like that is not appealing, no one wants to do it if they can help it. Why is god and religion an exception? I honestly want nothing to do with that. It makes hell far more desirable.

Also, salvation is a crock of shit. If God wanted to forgive my sins, being God and all, he could just forgive me. Essentially, sin is disobedience to god anyway, and biblically he’s shown no reason to obey him and no morality involved in his orders and I wouldn’t want to not sin. All that to say, though, it’s made up nonsense that doesn’t exist, no god, no sin, no repentance, no heaven no hell. So, take your witness and shove it up your ass.

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𝐼𝑡 [religion] 𝑠𝑎𝑦𝑠 𝑤𝑒 𝑐𝑎𝑛'𝑡 𝑏𝑒 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑎𝑙 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑡 '𝐵𝑖𝑔 𝐵𝑟𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟,' 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑎 𝑡𝑜𝑡𝑎𝑙𝑖𝑡𝑎𝑟𝑖𝑎𝑛 𝑝𝑒𝑟𝑚𝑖𝑠𝑠𝑖𝑜𝑛, 𝑚𝑒𝑎𝑛𝑠 𝑤𝑒 𝑐𝑎𝑛'𝑡 𝑏𝑒 𝑔𝑜𝑜𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑜𝑛𝑒 𝑎𝑛𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑠, 𝑤𝑒 𝑚𝑢𝑠𝑡 𝑏𝑒 𝑎𝑓𝑟𝑎𝑖𝑑, 𝑤𝑒 𝑚𝑢𝑠𝑡 𝑎𝑙𝑠𝑜 𝑏𝑒 𝑓𝑜𝑟𝑐𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑙𝑜𝑣𝑒 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒𝑜𝑛𝑒 𝑤ℎ𝑜𝑚 𝑤𝑒 𝑓𝑒𝑎𝑟 – 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑒𝑠𝑠𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑠𝑎𝑑𝑜𝑚𝑎𝑠𝑜𝑐ℎ𝑖𝑠𝑚, 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑒𝑠𝑠𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑎𝑏𝑗𝑒𝑐𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛, 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑒𝑠𝑠𝑒𝑛𝑐𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑚𝑎𝑠𝑡𝑒𝑟-𝑠𝑙𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑟𝑒𝑙𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑠ℎ𝑖𝑝 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑘𝑛𝑜𝑤𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑑𝑒𝑎𝑡ℎ 𝑖𝑠 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑐𝑎𝑛'𝑡 𝑤𝑎𝑖𝑡 𝑡𝑜 𝑏𝑟𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑖𝑡 𝑜𝑛. 𝐼 𝑠𝑎𝑦 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑖𝑠 𝑒𝑣𝑖𝑙...

-- Christopher Hitchens

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“Judge not, that ye not be judged” - Jesus the messiah.

“ By implication, it means to condemn, punish—avenge, conclude. It also carries the idea of having discernment. The passage where Jesus said, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged” ( Matthew 7:1 ) goes on to show us how to have discernment. Love is the proper motivation for not judging and for using good judgment.”

“ Mercy appears in the Bible as it relates to forgiveness or withholding punishment. For example, God the Father showed mercy on us when he sacrificed his son, Christ Jesus, on the Cross to pay the price for our sins.”

In summary: Be kinder than is necessary.

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Christianity seems to be going through a huge schism now over whether or not to forgive people who sin. I have even seen where one fundagelical said the beatitudes were too woke... I still have not heard a one of them say why an all-seeing, all-knowing, all-powerful god would create people whom he already knows he will damn?

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Yes, I have read about Christians rejecting forgiveness and mercy for fellow citizens they disagree with and the changing U.S. culture they want to fossilize in their favor. These folks reject a Jesus who healed a bleeding woman, accepting women, who under Mosaic Law, are considered impure since they bleed, compared the Empire of God to a woman who leavened Passover bread, accepted tax collectors, Roman collaborators, into his followers, attacked the Sanhedrin, worked on the sabbath, rejected stoning of an adulterous women, and overall mocked the hypocrisy of the Mosiac culture. Jesus prioritized behavior that was compassionate over solely being pure and not helping the poor.

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I can see why the Christian Reich reacted the way they did to Begg's suggestion that one of his callers attend a transgender wedding. Repeated exposure to alternative sexuality might just cause the observer to understand what's going on with trans people and [HORRORS!] begin to empathize with them! EEEEK! Can't have that!

Meanwhile, Begg is clearly thinking that his caller going to the wedding might influence one or both of the participants of the supposed "error of their ways," and possibly wind up being the fly in the ointment of what should otherwise be a happy event. I suspect that's a non-starter. Any couple who considers being relatively public with such a ceremony are more than likely strong enough to stand up to a less understanding point of view.

Turns out both Begg and the AFA are on the wrong side of this situation (big surprise, right?). Neither of them can deal with anything relating to alternative sexuality, and their knee-jerk reaction is to either attempt to spoil it or reject it out of hand ... and they both deserve any opprobrium they get.

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There are visible differences in LGBT brains and straight brains on functional MRI. Whodathunk that sin could be detected in an MRI scanner?

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"...don’t understand Jesus and don’t understand that he is a King."

I understand that Jesus is a fictional character and that we (royal we ; ) fought a war to get rid of Kings.

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I guess we shouldn't be surprised by this. Jesus himself said he came as a sword to divide family members against each other and that anyone who loves their son or daughter more than they love him is not worthy of him.

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The great irony is that Christians often rail against things like pornography and gambling on the basis that they hurt/divide/help to break up families. That's why they sanctimoniously label themselves and their beliefs as "pro-family."

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Their Hypocrite-in-chief demands they love enemies even as jezus burns them in hell.

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OT- Another one for the "conservatives saying the quiet part out loud" file... https://www.erininthemorning.com/p/ohio-michigan-republicans-in-released

A group of Republican legislators held a brainstorming session on The Cesspit Formerly Known As Twitter, in which they admitted that their "endgame" is to ban gender-affirming care for everyone, regardless of age, and that all of their "protecting the children" and "fairness in sports" horseshit was never anything more than a way to chip away at the issue of trans folks 𝘦𝘹𝘪𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘯𝘨 until they could move openly to criminalize transition, period. Apparently they forgot to deselect the "publish" option, or something, so their little bigot circle-jerk is now out in the open.

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Shun them just like Jesus said.

Judge them just like Jesus said.

Stone them just like Jesus said.

For that is the only way to stop the sinners from sinning.

There are whole congregations that actively reject the Sermon on the Mount because it is too soft, it isn’t hateful or hurtful enough for their tastes. They reject Jesus for turning the other cheek, or offering kindness forgiveness and sympathy.

There is too much acceptance of LGBTQ people for Christianity to sustain this thinking for very long. There’s already an arterial bleeding of adherents of Christianity, and the more cruel the churches become the heavier the bleeding. This laser focus on bullying LGBTQ people of the church will only kill it off.

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"This is a critical issue in the body of Christ right now,"

I thought that it was that giant bean burrito he ate. For you's sake, at least light a candle, Jeezy.

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Christians are so warm and fuzzy, aren’t they?

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How Christian of them.

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How many of us, or them, would recognise a transperson right of the bat ? Who can know if the cashier at the supermarket is not one ? Will they bath in holy water every time they pass someone in the street just in case ? Bigots make being ridiculous an art.

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My experience is that it usually is impossible to see. You must know a person really really well to guess correct without the person telling you.

That said, when I was a kid, all the neighbour kids app. the same age played together. We spent a lot of time together. I don't remember us talking about gender and preference for the sex of a future lover, but we knew and never made a fuzz about it. The important thing was to play together and climb the trees an building platforms in them and everything we thought was interesting and/or fun.

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Dammit, it's my birthday and Hemant hasn't produced a new column. Maybe he forgot. :)

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Gratulerer med dagen.

Hurra for deg som fyller ditt år,

ja deg vil vi gratulere.

Alle i ring omkring deg vi står,

og se nå hvor vi masjerer.

Bukke nikke neie, snu oss omkring.

Danse for deg med hopp og sprett og spring.

Ønske deg av hjertet alle gode ting.

Og si meg så, hva vil du mere?

GRATULERER!!!!!

The most used birthday song, used in Norway.

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A song would have been nice. I did get two books – and a card that showed a fireman rushing towards you with a hose saying "They're lighting the candles now Derek – for gods sake faster." I suppose that three quarters of a century you've got to expect something like this.

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I gave you a song, only written. You don't want me to sing for you. Nobody wants me to sing for them. Those I have sung for call it torture to listen to. It really is not good for you. You should consider me not singing to you a valuable present.

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Ah ... we're related then. :)

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Could be. But all my relatives are from 70-72 °N, so it has to be a very, very long time ago.

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Do dogs howl in pain when you sing ?

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Yup. Even cats run. I know for sure, some of them where my own.

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You would get along with DM.

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Jan 28·edited Jan 28

So, is your first name is Derek?

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Young whippersnapper!!!! 77 here

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👍🎂👍 🎂👍 🎂

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Happy B day. 🎂

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https://images.app.goo.gl/fCfK524HS31ewWix6

If your birthday is the 29th, it's still the 28th for Hemant.

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