HSUS Sues USFWS & Salazar Over Great Lakes Wolves Delisting!

gray wolf tumblr the champion

The Humane Society of the United States, Born Free USA, Friends of Animals, Help Our Wolves Live (HOWL) and Their Environment are suing the USFWS and Ken Salazar over the delisting of  gray wolves in the Great Lakes, which includes Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan.  They are demanding the wolves be placed back on the Endangered Species List.

We’ve all been waiting for this news.  HSUS filed an intent to sue back in October 2012 but we haven’t heard much about the lawsuit since then. This is very welcome news!

“The Humane Society of the United States and other animal welfare groups filed a lawsuit Tuesday to restore federal protections for gray wolves in the western Great Lakes region that were lifted last year.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in the District of Columbia against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and its parent agency, the U.S. Department of the Interior, said the decision to take wolves in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan off the endangered list threatens the animals’ recovery throughout most of their historic range. At one time, the animals roamed nearly all of North America”.…nbcnewsonlinedotcom

Minnesota and Wisconsin rushed to hold wolf hunts soon after the USFWS delisted them.  Minnesota’s actions were particularly egregious since their state plan previously included  a five-year moratorium on wolf hunts if wolves were ever delisted. But in an underhanded move, the Minnesota state legislature went to work and trashed the 5 year moratorium, paving the way for almost instant wolf hunts. Adding insult to injury both states ignored the pleas from Native Americans, namely the Ojibwe people, to stop the wolf hunts. A few tribes closed their reservations to wolf hunters but because many of their reservations are fragmented the majority of the tribes weren’t able to do this and so had to watch helplessly as their brother wolf was slaughtered.

Wisconsin’s bear hounders were chomping at the bit to hunt wolves with dogs and the state’s DNR went along with it. Thankfully it was challenged in court and an injunction was issued to stop the hunting of wolves with up to six dogs per hunter. Recently that injunction was lifted paving the way for the horrible practice to be carried out by 2014.

I applaud HSUS and the other environmental groups. Wolf advocates  have watched in horror as over 1000 wolves have been tortured, brutalized and killed in five state wolf hunts,  since August 30, 2012.   Minnesota’s  hunt killed 413 wolves quickly. Wisconsin slaughtered 117 of the iconic predators and Michigan is moving with lightning speed to establish a wolf hunt.

Relisting wolves is the only way to stop this madness. Hunters have been whipped to near frenzy by right-wing crazies, who’ve demonized wolves, blaming  them for everything under the sun, including eating children at bus stops. The irony is wolves are the least dangerous of the large carnivores that inhabit North America, with just two controversial fatalities in the last 100 years.  Hunters OTOH kill almost a hundred people a year in hunting accidents and wound another 1000.  An 11 year old  boy in Oregon was wounded at a bus stop but it wasn’t by a wolf,  a hunter accidentally shot him in the leg while he waited for the school bus.

I can only hope this lawsuit will be successful and wolves in the Upper Peninsula will once again be placed back on the Endangered Species list where they belong.  They should stay there until the climate of hate and persecution is stamped out and the yahoos who want to inflict pain and suffering on these vital apex predators have died out. I would give that about another fifty years!

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February 12, 2013

Wildlife Protection Groups File Suit to Restore Federal Protection for Great Lakes Wolves

A coalition of wildlife protection groups, including The Humane Society of the United States, Born Free USA, Help Our Wolves Live and Friends of Animals and Their Environment, filed suit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over its decision to remove the protections of the Endangered Species Act from gray wolves living in the western Great Lakes region.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s most recent decision to delist wolves became effective last year, after multiple previous attempts to delist wolves were struck down by the courts over the course of the last decade. The decision threatens the fragile remnants of the gray wolf population by confining wolves to a small area in the Great Lakes region – where state wildlife managers have rushed forward with reckless killing programs that threaten wolves with the very same practices that pushed them to the brink of extinction in the first place.

“In the short time since federal protections have been removed, trophy hunters and trappers have killed hundreds of Great Lakes wolves under hostile state management programs that encourage dramatic reductions in wolf populations,” said Jonathan Lovvorn, senior vice president and chief counsel for animal protection litigation at The HSUS.  “This decision rolls back the only line of defense for wolf populations, and paves the way for the same state-sponsored eradication policies that pushed this species to the brink of extinction in the first place.”

“The Endangered Species Act is popularly considered one of the most powerful conservation laws on the books, but it is rendered impotent if species are not allowed to recover fully across the breadth of their range before delisting,” said Adam Roberts, executive vice president of Born Free USA. “Simply put, the gray wolf still requires protection under the Act.”

“Wolf populations are just at the threshold of rebounding in many areas across the Great Lakes Region,” said Linda Hatfield, executive director of Help Our Wolves Live. “The recent delisting has taken the wolf back to the old days, days before the ESA, the days of state-sponsored bounty payments to hunters and trappers that were intended to eliminate wolves from the landscape.”

Following federal delisting, Wisconsin and Minnesota rushed to enact emergency regulations to allow the first public hunting and trapping seasons in the Great Lakes region in more than 40 years. The states authorized some of the most abusive and unsporting practices, including hound hunting, snares, baiting, night hunting and the use of steel-jawed leg hold traps. Together, hunters and trappers killed more than 500 wolves in these two states in less than four months.  These losses are in addition to natural limiting factors and a wide range of other human-caused impacts, such as the killing of wolves by damage control agents, poachers, and, inadvertently, by automobile drivers.

The Michigan legislature recently amended state law to designate wolves as a game species, which would allow the state to authorize a trophy hunting and trapping season for wolves. There is a referendum campaign, launched by animal welfare and conservation groups and Native American tribes, in progress to place the measure on the ballot and nullify the action of the legislature.

The plaintiffs are represented in the case by Schiff Hardin, LLP and attorneys within The HSUS’ Animal Protection Litigation section. The complaint was filed in the federal district court for the District of Columbia.

Timeline

October 2012 – January 2013 – More than 500 wolves killed by hunters and trappers in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Nov. 3, 2012 – Minnesota’s hunting and trapping season begins.

Oct. 15, 2012 – Wisconsin’s wolf hunting and trapping season begins, marking the first public hunting and trapping season in the Great Lakes region in nearly 40 years. The HSUS and others send notice of their intent to sue the USFWS over its unlawful decision to delist wolves in the Great Lakes region.

December 2012 – Michigan enacts legislation declaring the gray wolf a game animal to allow a trophy hunting season.

April 2012 – July 2012 – Wisconsin enacts legislation mandating a wolf hunting and trapping season, requiring that the state wildlife agency authorize the use of dogs, night hunting and snare and leg-hold traps. The state wildlife agency adopts regulations for the hunting and trapping of wolves in 2012-2013 via emergency rules.

July 2011 – August 2012 – Minnesota enacts legislation allowing a wolf hunting and trapping season once wolves are delisted. The state wildlife agency adopts regulations for the hunting and trapping of wolves in 2012-2013 via emergency rules.

December 2011 – The USFWS issues a final rule delisting the gray wolf population in the western Great Lakes.

September 2010 – The USFWS issues a finding that petitions to delist wolves in the Great Lakes region “may be warranted.”

July 2009 – The HSUS enters into a court-approved settlement agreement with the USFWS that reinstated federal protections for wolves in the Great Lakes region.

June 2009 – The HSUS files suit in federal court to block the delisting decision

April 2009 – The USFWS issues a final rule delisting the gray wolf population in the western Great Lakes.

September 2008 – In response to litigation filed by The HSUS and other organizations, a federal court overturned the USFWS’ Great Lakes delisting decision, thereby reinstating federal protections for gray wolves in the region.

February 2007 – The USFWS issues a final rule delisting the gray wolf population in the western Great Lakes.

2005 – 2006 – The USFWS tries to strip wolves of protection by issuing blanket permits to the state of Wisconsin that authorize state officials to kill dozens of wolves. These permits are thrown out by a federal court in response to a lawsuit by The HSUS.

January 2005 – A federal court rules that the 2003 downlisting was arbitrary and capricious, returning the wolf to endangered status.

2003 – The USFWS issues a final rule downgrading most of the gray wolves living in the lower 48 states from endangered to threatened, making it easier for people to lethally take wolves.

1978 – Gray wolf listed at the species level under the Endangered Species Act as endangered throughout the coterminous United States and Mexico, except in Minnesota, where gray wolves were listed as threatened.

1974 – Various subspecies of wolves listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

1967 – Wolves listed under the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966 – the precursor to the Endangered Species Act.

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Lawsuit: Put gray wolves back on endangered species list in upper Midwest

By Steve Karnowski, AP

Hunters and trappers in Minnesota and Wisconsin killed 530 wolves combined during those states’ recently concluded seasons — 413 in Minnesota and 117 in Wisconsin. The Michigan Legislature voted in December to authorize wolf hunting, which could resume as early as this fall if the state’s Natural Resources Commission approves.

“In the short time since federal protections have been removed, trophy hunters and trappers have killed hundreds of Great Lakes wolves under hostile state management programs that encourage dramatic reductions in wolf populations,” Jonathan Lovvorn, chief counsel for animal protection litigation at the HSUS, said in a statement. “This decision rolls back the only line of defense for wolf populations, and paves the way for the same state-sponsored eradication policies that pushed this species to the brink of extinction in the first place.”

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/02/12/16939774-lawsuit-put-gray-wolves-back-on-endangered-species-list-in-upper-midwest

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Animal welfare groups want gray wolves protected, hunting to end

By Steve Karnowski
Associated Press
February 12, 2013

MINNEAPOLIS — The Humane Society of the United States and other animal welfare groups filed a lawsuit Tuesday to restore federal protections for gray wolves in the western Great Lakes region that were lifted last year.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in the District of Columbia against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and its parent agency, the U.S. Department of the Interior, said the decision to take wolves in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan off the endangered list threatens the animals’ recovery throughout most of their historic range. At one time, the animals roamed nearly all of North America.

The Humane Society of the United States provided a copy of the lawsuit to The Associated Press before its public announcement in the afternoon. The other plaintiffs include Born Free USA, Help Our Wolves Live and Friends of Animals and Their Environment.

Gray Wolf Historic Range

Gray Wolf Historic Range

Top Photo: Courtesy Tumblr
Posted in: Wolf Wars, Minnesota wolves, Wisconsin wolves, Michigan wolves
Tags: HSUS, Friends of Animals, Born Free USA, Help Our Wolves Live, Their Environment, USFWS, Department of the Interior, delisting challenge, wolf persecution, Great Lakes, gray wolves, Native Americans, Ojibwe people
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Update: Friends of Animals NYC HOWL IN, PHONE IN A Success….

Photo: Friends of Animals, Edita Birnkrant

The Howl In, Phone In held by Friends of Animals in New York City today was a success.

“Activists, holding a protest at New York City’s Central Park, told Citydesk that they “had great response from the public today,” encouraging citizens to call Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter, pledging to boycott Idaho until the wolf hunting season, which began today, stops. Protestors said they have launched an international boycott of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming regarding the hunts.

“One woman named Christina Rose from Australia said she was cancelling her tour of Yellowstone National Park after learning about (the hunt),” said Edita Birnkrant of Friends of Animals, the organization sponsoring today’s protest. “That’s just one story of many who were educated today about the bloody hunt happening in Idaho right now.”

Thank you Friends of Animals.

We need more Howl Ins like this one to tell Idaho and Montana that Americans and people from all  over the world love wolves and support them. They do not want to see them destroyed for the hunting and ranching lobbies, who dominate politics in the wolf states.  These wolves do not belong to a small group of wolf haters, they are part of our American heritage and we’re not going to sit quietly by while they are slaughtered. Speak up people.  Hold a Howl-In in your hometown. Visit Howl Across America and learn how to organize peaceful protests.

Share this with everyone you know. Stand for wolves!

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Boise Weekly, City Desk

Video Update: NYC Howl-In Protests Idaho Wolf Hunt

Posted by George Prentice on Tue, Aug 30, 2011 at 2:18 PM

Click on the link to watch the video

http://www.boiseweekly.com/CityDesk/archives/2011/08/30/howl-in-scheduled-to-protest-wolf-hunt

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Governor Butch Otter of Idaho
Office of the Governor
State Capitol
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720

Phone: 208.3342100
Fax: 208.334.3454
governor@gov.idaho.gov

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Idaho tourism office

http://www.visitidaho.org/contact/

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Write the Potato Commission:

http://contact.idahopotato.com/

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Photo: Courtesy Friends of Animals

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Friends of Animals

Tags: Howl In, Phone in, Wolf Wars, wolf persecution, Friends of Animals, Idaho, wolf/hunt slaughter, economic and tourism boycotts wolf states

Priscilla Feral Speaks Out For Wolves On CNN!!

Priscilla Feral, President, Friends of Animals appeared on Issues With Jane-Velez Mitchell, Friday, August 12th. For once we heard the truth spoken on national television about the absolutely atrocious situation wolves are facing in the Northern Rockies.

Unless the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals grants an Emergency Stay to stop the hunts, wolves will face the tortures of the damned, starting August 30, 2011 when the Idaho hunts begin.

Priscilla slams the Obama administration for appointing a rancher to head the Interior. She speaks about the upcoming hunts in Idaho and Montana AND the awful  unregulated killing of wolves proposed by Wyoming. If Wyoming has their way haters could kill wolves in the most horrendous ways.

Friends of Animals is calling for a boycott of all the wolf states.  Economic boycotts are one of the ways we can push back against this brutality. All three states are  dependent on tourism and losing tourist dollars could make a difference.

The nightmare started with Obama’s appointment of Ken Salazar to head the  Interior. Obama has the distinction of being the only President to delist wolves twice and he hasn’t even served a full term. With the Presidents blessing  Western politicians were able to insert a wolf delisting rider into a must-pass budget bill, which stripped  gray wolves of their ESA protections. This never would have passed as a stand alone bill, the only way the anti-wolf lobby could accomplish the dirty deed was by sneaking into an appropriations bill, without the knowledge of most Americans. Every Democrat Senator voted yes, except three, even though many of them professed to support the ESA and wolves.  Senators like Boxer, Feinstein, Kerry, the Udall’s all voted to delist the gray wolf.   We can’t blame the Republicans this time. Our Democrat President signed the budget bill into law with the wolf delisting rider intact. Now wolves are facing extirpation AGAIN,  if the wolf states have their way.  And why is the USFWS going along with Wyoming’s “shoot-on-sight” policy, when they fought it in court before? It is vile and will damage Wyoming’s reputation. Who will want to visit a state where the iconic wolf is treated with such brutality?

If we don’t speak out now, if we don’t protest these terrible policies, wolves could disappear once again from the Western US.

HOWL ACROSS AMERICA!!

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IDAHO

Governor Butch Otter

Office of the Governor
State Capitol
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720

Phone: (208) 334-2100
Fax: (208) 334-3454

Comments: http://gov.idaho.gov/ourgov/contact.html

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WYOMING

Governor Matt Mead

By Mail:
State Capitol, 200 West 24th Street
Cheyenne, WY 82002-0010

By Phone or Fax:
307.777.7434 (phone)
307.632.3909 (fax)

Comments: http://governor.wy.gov/contactUs/Pages/default.aspx

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MONTANA

Governor Brian D. Schweitzer

Office of the Governor
Montana State Capitol Bldg.
P.O. Box 200801
Helena MT 59620-0801
(406) 444-3111, FAX (406) 444-5529

Comments: http://governor.mt.gov/contact/commentsform.asp

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PLEASE DON’T KILL ME!!

Video: Courtesy YouTube Sub4SubNewsToday’s Channel

Photo: Courtesy First People

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags:  wolf wars,  Friends of Animals, Priscilla Feral, HLN/CNN, Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell, wolves under fire, Ken Salazar

HOWL ACROSS AMERICA by Louise Du Toit

We have our own song!!

Louise Du Toit, “Award-winning South African artist, musician, singer, composer, arranger, lyricist, actress, writer and painter” wrote Howl Across America and dedicated the song to the campaign  It’s absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much Louise!!

It is my hope it will be played tomorrow at the rally in Washington, DC.  Louise is in the process of making a video as well.  In the meantime you can click on this link to listen and download the song.

HOWL ACROSS AMERICA

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WOLF RALLY TODAY, WASHINGTON, DC

Wolf Warriors please join Friends of Animals today, Friday, August 12th, in Washington, DC, To Rally For Wolves and Protest the Upcoming Wolf Hunts.

Where:Gather at the Capitol Reflecting Pool at 9.00 a.m. (First Street and East Capitol). Then march to the White House before convening at Lafayette Park (1600 Pennsylvania Avenue—directly across from the White House).

This is the time. Stand for wolves. Be a voice for the voiceless. Remember what wolves are facing in Idaho, starting August 30, 2011, eighteen days from now.

Idaho Wolf Hunt

N0 quotas in most of state.  Hunters can kill 2 wolves per calendar year and since the wolf hunt in Idaho extends through March 31, 2012, hunters can apply for 2 more tags in 2012, allowing them to kill up to 4 wolves. Trappers can kill 5 wolves in 2011 and apply for more tags at the beginning of 2012. That would mean trappers could kill up to 10 wolves during this upcoming hunt.

Traps do not have to be checked for up to 72 hours, wolves could suffer for three days in a trap before being killed. Think how long three days is without food or water, with your pack-mates surrounding you, unable to help.

Remember the pups are just four to five months old. They are unable to care for themselves without the pack. Idaho has approximately 1000 wolves, 1/3 are pups. They could be killed outright or left to starve if their parents are killed.

Idaho wants to reduce its wolf population from 1000 wolves to 150. That means 850 wolves could be slaughtered in this hunt.  Mothers, fathers, babies, sisters, brothers…all gone.

Hunters can use traps (leghold), snares, archery, high-powered rifles, the horror of it goes on and on. If the hunters and trappers don’t get the job done Idaho fish and game has stated they will use Wildlife Services, with their helicopter gunships and traps.

Make no mistake, this will be a bloodbath.

Wyoming

Wyoming wants unregulated killing of wolves in most of the state. That means if Wyoming has its way wolves can be  killed every day of the year.   It will be open season on them to be killed in any way possible, even running over them with a snowmobile.  Wyoming has approx. 300 plus wolves. Yellowstone wolves regularly cross over the park boundaries.  If that happens, they are in danger of losing their lives, just like the Cottonwood Pack back in 2009.

Montana

Montana has approx. 520 wolves. Hunters can kill 220 wolves with archery and high-powered rifles. Meanwhile Wildlife Services continues to kill wolves in Montana. The wolves will be dodging bullets from the hunts and WS.

BE THERE TO STAND FOR WOLVES IN THEIR DARK HOUR!!!

Extirpation All Over Again?

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IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

Priscilla Feral, President, Friends of Animals, will be a guest on the Jane Velez-Mitchell Show, HLN CHANNEL today @ 7pm EST, 6pm Central, 5pm Mtn and 4pm Pacific, talking about the DC Rally and the upcoming wolf slaughter. Please watch or set your DVR’s.

Visit Friends of Animals For Updates On The Washington, DC rally!!

Howling Across America To Save Wolves

http://www.friendsofanimals.org/news/2011/august/howling-across-ameri.html#comments

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Top Photo: Courtesy Louise Du Toit

Middle Photo: Courtesy All About Wolves

Bottom Photo: Courtesy First People

Posted in: Howl Across America, Wolf Wars

Tags: Howl Across America, Louise Du Toit, wolf protest, Washington, DC Rally, Friends of Animals, Priscilla Feral, wolf hunts

 

Friends Of Animals Petitions Court To Join Lawsuit Challenging Wolf Delisting Rider…

This is terrific news!! With Friends of Animals joining the lawsuit there will be four highly respected conservation groups going to bat for wolves.  If you noticed The Safari Club,  NRA and Montana Farm Bureau have also asked to intervene in the wolf delisting lawsuit for the other side.

Friends of Animals, a staunch supporter of animal rights, has filed a motion in Montana District Court to join the lawsuit brought by Alliance for the Wild Rockies, Friends of the Clearwater and WildEarth Guardians, that challenges the constitutionality of the wolf delisting rider. The rider was slipped into a must-pass budget bill by Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) . 81 Senators then voted yes to delist wolves in a budget bill. Only three Democrats voted against it: Leahy, Levin and Wyden. Bernie Sanders of VT, an Independent, also voted no. President Obama signed the bill into law, which is no surprise since his administration has now delisted wolves twice and he hasn’t even completed his first term.  We can’t blame the Republicans for everything.

Here’s the press release Friends of Animals posted on their website:

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Friends of Animals Challenges Unconstitutional Wolf Delisting Rider

May 27, 2011

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 27 May 2011

Contact: Dustin Rhodes
Phone: (202) 906-0210

Darien, Connecticut—Friends of Animals filed a Motion to Intervene in the case Alliance for the Wild Rockies v. Salazar, which challenges the constitutionality of Section 1713 of the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act of 2011, P.L. 112-10 (also called the “budget rider” or the “wolf rider”). The budget rider directed the USFWS to reinstate the 2007 wolf delisting rule, which removed gray wolves in all areas of the Northern Rocky Mountains Distinct Population Segment (DPS) from protection under the Endangered Species Act. The original complaint was filed by Alliance for the Wild Rockies, Friends of the Clearwater and WildEarth Guardians on May 5, 2011 and the case was recently consolidated with another case, Center for Biological Diversity v. Salzar. The complaints challenge constitutionality of this legislative enactment.

Friends of Animals’ president Priscilla Feral says,

We must do everything in our power to undo the deadly disservice that was done to gray wolves; taking them off of the Endangered Species List was not only unethical and unjust—it was unconstitutional.

The wolf delisting rider, which was included in the 2011 federal budget, was sponsored by Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., and Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and was passed with a bipartisan vote of 81-19 on April 14, 2011.

http://www.friendsofanimals.org/news/2011/may/friends-of-animals-c.html

PLEASE VISIT ALL FOUR GROUP’S WEBSITES (I linked to them in this post) AND GIVE GENEROUSLY TO HELP THEM WIN THIS LAWSUIT FOR THE WOLVES!! 

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Photo: Courtesy All About Wolves

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags:  Friends of Animals, Alliance for the Wild Rockies, Friends of the Clearwater, WildEarth Guardians, Wolf Delisting Lawsuit

Published in: on May 29, 2011 at 4:32 am  Comments (24)  
Tags: ,
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