Saturday, April 04, 2015

Arizona Judge Rules That Simcox Can Cross-Examine Young Alleged Victims

Chris Simcox during his border-watching days.
[Cross-posted at Hatewatch.]

The oft-delayed Arizona trial of erstwhile Minuteman leader Chris Simcox on child-molestation charges has blown up once again, thanks primarily to Simcox’s insistence on having the right to personally cross-examine his alleged victims — two young girls aged 7 and 8.

Simcox had previously raised the possibility that this might occur when he announced that he intended to represent himself at his trial, something he has a constitutional right to do. However, Maricopa County prosecutor Yigael Cohen requested before the trial began that Superior Court Judge Jose Padilla require that Simcox’s two “advisory” attorneys question the girls, one of whom is Simcox’s daughter.

Now, according to a report by Stephen Lemons of the Phoenix New Times, Judge Padilla has conceded to Simcox’s counter-argument — namely, that he should be permitted to directly cross-examine the two girls because doing so is “a crucial cornerstone of his desire to present his best defense.” Padilla ruled in a hearing Thursday afternoon that Simcox would be allowed to question the girls, who were 5 and 6 years old when the crimes allegedly occurred.

But Padilla refused to remove himself from the trial, which Simcox had also requested.

According to The Associated Press, prosecutors plan to immediately file an appeal of Padilla’s ruling, meaning the trial — which had already been delayed nine times since Simcox’s arrest in July 2013 — is likely to last into the summer. Lemons reported that deputy county attorney Kelli Luther argued strenuously against allowing Simcox to “control his own victims in the courtroom,” pointing to U.S. Supreme Court and federal appellate court rulings allowing for special accommodations to be made in similar instances.

However, Padilla said he would need evidence that the children are traumatized at the prospect of being interrogated by their alleged molester, and brushed aside letters from the girls’ mothers attesting to that effect: “With all due respect,” he said, “[the mothers] are simply not qualified to make that assessment.”

In the filing made this week, Simcox argues that the children “were never subjected to … harm in the first place,” so the county attorney is “asking the court to find the defendant guilty … before the trial has even begun.”

Simcox was originally charged with also molesting a third little girl, whom Simcox allegedly bribed with candy to expose her genitals, but those charges were dropped after the grand jury chose not to indict him in that case. However, that girl is expected to be a prosecution witness as well.

Simcox’s trial was most recently scheduled to begin March 24. However, when attorneys gathered in Padilla’s courtroom that day, they were informed that Simcox was in the hospital, for reasons that could not be disclosed under medical-privacy laws, and would be there for a week. At a pretrial conference on Thursday, Judge Padilla scheduled jury selection to begin on April 6.
But if the prosecutors proceed to take the ruling on the girls’ testimony to an appeals court, that schedule seems unlikely at best.

During his heyday as a Minuteman leader, Simcox
liked to pose for reporters with a gun down
the front of his jeans.
These developments are the latest in a long and twisted road to trial for Simcox, who previously had suggested he would present a “grand conspiracy” defense that he had been targeted for prosecution, and the evidence against him invented, because of his prominent role as a leader and co-founder of the nativist extremism group called the Minutemen. The judge later informed him that such a defense would not be allowed.

At the height of the border vigilante movement, Simcox was president of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, a nationwide, anti-immigration organization that led armed “citizen border patrols” in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas, along with a smattering of states on the Canadian border where Minutemen had deployed to protect America from northern invaders. Never modest, the cigar-chomping Simcox was a hyper and relentless self-aggrandizer who came across with the smug egotism that quickly earned him the nickname “The Little Prince.”

He was known for over-the-top claims, like his repeated assertion that he had seen Chinese Red Army men at the Mexican border, preparing to attack the U.S. Nevertheless, he was featured repeatedly on Lou Dobbs’ CNN show and a plethora of shows on Fox News, where he was treated as a serious critic of immigration policy.

But even then, there were allegations of sexual abuse. As the SPLC reported in 2005, Simcox was accused by his first wife of molesting another daughter when she was a teenager, although no complaint was ever made to police. His second wife also sought custody of their teenage son because, she said, Simcox had become violent and unpredictable. His third wife — the mother of his current accuser — took out a restraining order against Simcox in 2010 when she divorced him.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Paranoid Anti-Obama Ad Keeps Calling Alarm On Ammo Proposal Even After It’s Withdrawn


[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]

Beneath ominous music, the voice of the narrator strikes a strident chord, feverishly warning viewers: “Attention! President Obama is exercising another executive power grab! And this time, he is going directly after your Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms!”

Sounding for all the world like an Alex Jones or Oath Keepers production, the video ad then launches into a paranoid description of Obama’s supposed plot to destroy the Second Amendment.

“The Obama administration was unable to impose gun restrictions and confiscation through the legislative process, so now it’s trying to ban commonly used ammunition through regulation. Obama must be stopped now! If we allow Obama to ban ammunition through executive fiat now, it will lead to the loss of our Second Amendment rights by the time Obama leaves office!”

Of course, as with most similar efforts at fearmongering over the Obama administration’s handling of gun rights and gun control, the reality regarding the supposed plot to destroy Americans’ gun rights is a far cry from what’s depicted in the ads: There was never an executive order being considered about the ammunition, as the ad suggests; and the brief consideration by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) of altering regulations of a narrow bandwidth of armor-piercing bullets had already been abruptly abandoned several weeks ago.

Indeed, with only 19 months remaining in office, the long-feared Obama “gun grab” that gun-rights and antigovernment “Patriot” groups (not to mention Jones and Co.) have feverishly warned the public against since at least 2008 appears far from ever materializing. The organization behind the ads, however, is not a run-of-the-mill far-right “Patriot” group, but presents itself as a mainstream gun-rights group, the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF).

The regulation in question – actually an ATF proposal to alter its regulation framework for certain types of ammo used in AR-15 semi-automatic weapons, especially those such as armor-piercing types that seemed unlikely to be used “primarily for sporting purposes” – was met with fierce opposition in early March by the Second Amendment Foundation, who launched the ad campaign with the incendiary video in early March.

However, the ATF recoiled quickly from the negative response generated by the video ad, and on March 10 withdrew the proposal and closed off comments by noting that “the vast majority of comments received to date are critical of the framework.”

Nonetheless, the SAF’s ads have continued to run, appearing on national media outlets such as CNN and Fox News, as well as at conservative outlets such as The Blaze. They direct viewers to an 800 phone number that, if dialed, collects the callers’ names and adds them to an SAF petition opposing
any regulatory change for the ammunition, as well as the outfit’s potential donor database.

SAF spokesman David Workman told me that the non-profit organization had invested “several hundred thousand dollars” in the campaign, and the ads would cease appearing once the ad buy had expired, probably in early April. And besides, he added, his organization didn’t believe that the administration had fully retreated yet.

“When ATF pulled back on it, they didn’t say the idea was dead,” Workman said. “They’re going to go back and re-examine it, see how to present it to the public so it doesn’t generate 310,000 comments. We don’t believe this is a dead idea.”

ATF spokeswoman Danette Seward told the Washington Post that the proposed "green tip" ammo ban came from the ATF's decision to review all ammo exemptions to a 1986 law that had sought to crack down on “cop killer” bullets. Seward said the agency had seen a recent increase in the number of "sporting purposes" exemptions requested by ammunition manufacturers for the AR-15 ammo. Moreover, she said, the agency wanted to strip the “green tip” armor-piercing ammo because AR-15 handguns capable of firing the rounds have recently become available.

The White House had issued a statement calling the regulation change “common sense,” but at no time did it ever indicate that the president would make the regulation through executive action. Press Secretary Josh Earnest, likewise, had told reporters that this was an action by the ATF under its standard procedures, noting: “I’d put this in the category of common-sense steps that the government can take to protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans while also making sure that our law enforcement officers who are walking the beat every day can do their jobs just a little bit more safely.”

Workman explained that the seemingly hysterical conclusion of the ad’s narrator that the failed change in rules for the AR-15 ammunition could doom every citizen’s guns rights could be seen as rational, if one saw any gun regulation at all as a kind of slippery slope.

“If people can be convinced that it’s OK to ban one type of ammunition, it will be easier to sell the idea that it’s OK to ban another type of ammunition,” Workman said. “And then we’ll get right back to where we were before, he’ll want to ban a whole class of firearms. They’ve tried to do that before.”

He thought that raising fears about an Obama plot against citizens’ gun rights was legitimate, regardless of Obama’s prior lack of action on gun control. “You can go ahead and think what you want, but there are a lot of people out there who are very concerned about this administration’s designs on gun control,” he said. “Whether it starts with an ammunition ban or some other sort of regulation, it is still viewed by millions of people as an attempt to erode their basic right to keep and bear arms.”

Thanks in no small part to a barrage of misleading ad campaigns.

Going Clear, SeaWorld Style

Trainers and orcas perform at SeaWorld Orlando's G Pool,
the tank where Dawn Brancheau was killed.

An odd thing happened the other night at Seattle's Town Hall, during John Hargrove's appearance in support of his superb new expose, Beneath the Surface: Killer Whales, SeaWorld, and the Truth Beyond Blackfish.

Midway through the Q&A, a woman no one knew stood up and waved some papers and asked Hargrove if he had been arrested for domestic violence and assault against his sister. Hargrove made clear to everyone that this was a baldfaced falsehood. There were some boos, and the woman shrank away into the woodwork. 

Mind you, I am friends with some authors who attract controversy -- especially Rick Perlstein and Max Blumenthal -- and so of course there are always some kooks at their public speaking appearances, at least in Seattle. But they're usually of the black-helicopter variety, if you know what I mean. I'd never seen anyone try to smear an author in public with an unprovable and ugly accusation that had nothing to do with the subject at hand.

Well, let me correct that: I have seen this kind of intimidation by smear campaign previously. It's the kind of thing that everyone who has ever dealt with Scientology has had to confront, particularly when it comes to former members exposing their secrets.

And make no mistake: Hargrove has been scoring consistently against SeaWorld, particularly as he discusses the difficulties orca trainers face, embodied by the 2010 death of his colleague Dawn Brancheau at the hands of the largest orca in captivity, Tilikum, at SeaWorld Orlando. His appearance with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show was also a smash hit:

All the week I had been making jokes on Facebook comparing SeaWorld to Scientology -- a timely comparison, given the appearance of the documentary Going Clear on HBO. The film is in many ways just a distillation of Lawrence Wright's magisterial work of investigative journalism of the same title. "I'm becoming convinced that SeaWorld is the theme-park equivalent of Scientology: a cult that relies on abusive practices and intentional self-delusion/prevarication to sustain itself," I wrote. OK, I wasn't really joking.

And then on Monday night, there was that strange woman trying to smear him with an accusation that, even if true, has not a single freaking thing to do with the issue that Hargrove has been confronting -- namely, the abusive and coercive and ultimately inhumane practices in its treatment both of its captive killer whales as well as the people who have the jobs of handling and caring for them. 

Analogy confirmed. In spades.

And the craziest part is that the smear artists were just getting started.

The very next day, one of the more pestilent corners of the wingnutosphere posted a video showing a drunken John Hargrove harassing a friend on the phone with the repeated and thoughtless use of the N-word, delivered with a Texas twang. Within the day, even as one San Diego area bookstore canceled Hargrove's appearance, the video was then being promoted to various media outlets avidly by none other than Fred Jacobs, SeaWorld's chief communications officer.
SeaWorld spokesman Fred Jacobs said in [an] email that “we believe it is important that you see this video we received just this weekend from an internal whistleblower.”
“Anyone interviewing the “Blackfish” star should certainly be aware of it,” Jacobs said in the email. “We are offended by John’s behavior and language. The video is particularly reprehensible since John Hargrove is wearing a SeaWorld shirt. SeaWorld would have terminated Hargrove’s employment immediately had we known he engaged in this kind of behavior.”
Hargrove was appropriately embarrassed, as well he should have been. It's a video that shows him at his worst -- thoughtless, arrogant, ignorant, and mean. And his initial response -- "I remember parts of that night and drinking, and you can clearly tell we definitely had a lot to drink. But that video is taken completely out of context. There’s not a proper beginning or end" -- was inadequate.

But he's since been more forthcoming, more like the John Hargrove most of us who have met him know now. He told KPBS:
“I don’t think that it will for the people who truly know me ... It’s certainly offensive language and it should’ve never been used. I was so heavily intoxicated — I barely recall any of those events. Clearly, it’s not funny.”

Last night on Naomi Rose's Facebook page, Hargrove went into even greater detail:
First I will make clear I take full responsibility for my actions and I cringed when I watched the video from 5 years ago- a night I barely remember when it happened and even less of 5 years after the fact. There is no place EVER for the N word. This is a word tied with a horrific history that as a white person I cannot even fully understand the depth of pain this caused black people. I certainly regret my actions that night. I would not expect anyone to defend that conversation where I used the N word. I am extremely disappointed that my words could cause more pain to a minority group. Regardless if you are in a private home and drunk and think you are harmlessly being funny- this word should never be used.

Tonight at my book signing in LA, I had an exchange with an black man that will stay with me for the rest of my life. He was intelligent, articulate, and completely genuine. He began by saying that he and his friends have followed and supported me from the beginning I began to speak out and admired my courage by doing so. They believe in what we are all fighting for and have held me in high regard and respected me but when he saw the video he looked me straight in the eyes and said that it truly hurt him and wanted to hear directly from me what I had to say regarding that video and if I was willing to personally apologize to him. 

I was both impressed and humbed and felt even worse actually seeing a face of this young black man who respected me but had now been hurt by me. This was an amazing human being and without hesitation or making any excuses I sincerely apologized to him to his face and explained as I said earlier that even though I know it is NEVER acceptable to use this word that as a white man I don't pretend to ever be able to fully understand the pain this word has caused him personally or any other black person.

He had already bought my book and stayed to go through the line to have me sign his book. We shook hands and had a real and genuine understanding and forgiveness in the end. I was humbled and had so much respect for him in how he chose to conduct himself. I will never forget that exchange. He deserved my answers and my apology and he accepted them and chose to forgive me. And for that I am very grateful. That exchange was truly powerful and witnessed by a packed room in the book store.
As someone whose regular business entails confronting racism, there's nothing amusing about the video or Hargrove's participation in it. But as someone whose work also entails assessing evidence regarding whether someone is a serious racist, I have only one question: What, are you freaking kidding me?

This video was recorded five years ago. Hargrove is clearly intoxicated. He clearly thinks he is being amusing. The only other person who seems to think he's amusing is the person recording the thing, who we can all similarly presume to be the person who leaked the video of their onetime friend. Clearly the woman on the other end is not much amused, especially as Hargrove makes fun of her for dropping the N-bomb as well. 

This is ugly stuff, but I can also assure you that it is common, everyday stuff that a million thoughtless white Americans privately indulge every single day. It's also an extraordinarily transparent smear attempt with "gotcha" video, the kind that actually sheds little light on the issue of racism and its institutionalization, and in the end is a shallow distraction that does more to dilute a serious discussion of the underlying issues. It's certainly not the kind of talk that would attract the attention of organizations such as the SPLC or the ADL, which are dedicated to combating hate speech and racial extremism in its many manifestations, and are logically and necessarily focused on dealing with hatemongers who spew hate over the public airwaves to large audiences every day. This is small-time, petty racism that is meaningless unless it can somehow demonstrate that Hargrove is a practicing racist today (not likely) or that it reveals a character flaw that he has never outgrown.

Part of the story that Hargrove has to tell, in fact, is all about his personal growth and the immense changes in attitudes that he has undergone. At one time, Hargrove was the consummate Company Guy, happily shilling the SeaWorld official line about the killer whales in their care and dedicating his body and his physical well-being to a company that saw him and the whales as commodities, for years at low salaries made endurable by their idealism and the ego satisfaction that came with the job. He made fun of the dippy hippies who used to protest outside SeaWorld venues for the freedom of the animals in his care, including one of the oldest wild whales in captivity, the Northern Resident (A5 pod) Corky.

And then, like someone awakening from an abusive cult because the personal toll -- including the death toll of friends and colleagues -- began to mount, Hargrove grew up and out of the corporate cocoon he had placed himself in. To say that the Hargrove you see onstage today is nothing like the punk in the video is an understatement. In fact, it's also clear that this Hargrove -- the cocky, thoughtless racist -- is the Hargrove who also defended orca captivity to the hilt.

In the end, it reflects far more directly in a negative way on SeaWorld's culture, because the Hargrove in the video is the Ultimate SeaWorld Guy. And that same culture seems to think that smearing him with the video -- given that it has zero bearing on his knowledge of the company's orca-captivity programs -- will convince people that Hargrove has a credibilty problem.

No, it's the company that would trot out that kind of petty, crude, ham-handed smear that has a credibility problem (and note that they don't even have enough class or smarts to do it on the sly, letting their defenders in the wingnutosphere do the dirty work for them; no, their comms chief is the guy out there on the front line, openly circulating the smear). Especially because it reminds us all so closely of how Scientology, the ultimate fear-driven cult, has operated for years.

What Wright's book details exhaustively is how the church assiduously gathers information, especially lots of private information, on all of its members and recruits, especially through the ritual "audits" conducted by the church that are essentially tell-all confession sessions, and then exploits that information and their insecurities to drive them deeper into the cult, making it so that the threat of cutting them off from the cult is like cutting off their air. Tellingly, Hargrove's book describes a culture among SeaWorld employees that worked in similar ways.

And woe betide anyone who should fall from favor in the cult of Scientology. They would be subjected to all kinds of ritual humiliations, demotions and even abusive degradation. Again, not entirely dissimilar from SeaWorld.

Eventually, some would try to break away, but if they ever tried to reveal to the public the facts they had learned they would be confronted with the most ferocious personal attacks, in which literally nothing was out of bounds. Of course, they would first mine all the personal information revealed during the church's "audits," which then were used in attempts to blackmail their critics into silence. If that failed, the church often resorted to even more frightening personal attacks.

In the end, the phrase "going clear" is now a stand-in for anyone overwhelmed by Scientology's fraudulent spiritual nonsense, someone who believes in the church's overtly insane theology without question as an act of pure gullibility. The church itself is shrinking, but it's intensifying its hold on the believers it has remaining.

SeaWorld isn't as deeply deformed as Scientology, perhaps because its pseudo-religious components are limited, as is its reach. But it's become abundantly self-evident that SeaWorld's self-contained and rapidly collapsing bubble of badly constructed reality is approaching its final throes as well. And lashing out as it does so. 

It's an ugly sight, really. Much uglier than a stupid video.

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

What 'Religious Freedom' Really Means

The Church of Jesus Christ-Christian, aka the Aryan Nations, at Hayden Lake, Idaho, in 2000.

The furor over recent "religious freedom" bills being passed in various states -- particularly Indiana, with similar viruses festering in North Carolina, Arkansas, and Texas -- has caught the attention, I'm sure, of a certain class of religious believers.

Namely, the people whose own religious faith, such as it is, dictates a belief in the supremacy of the white race and the diminution and demonization of all non-white races. They are real, they do exist, and they go by such names as the Christian Identity movement or its Church of Jesus Christ-Christian, or the Creativity Movement, aka the World Church of the Creator (WCOTC).

Each of these and a dozen other similar "faiths," while all considered "fringe" faiths, nonetheless lay claim each to being legitimate religions, and while their numbers have been steadily shrinking over the years, they do nonetheless claim a certain number of followers.

And they have been told, consistently, over many years by every authority in the United States, that while they may be perfectly free to hold and preach these beliefs, they do not have the right to act upon if they are involved in the business of providing public goods and services. They are not permitted to discriminate according to race or religion even if it is counter to their private religious beliefs, because the law does not permit such discrimination in the public square. Period.

So when they hear mainstream conservative Republicans proclaim "religious freedom" as an excuse to permit people to discriminate against the LGBT community, you can bet that they are paying close attention. Because the language of these bills is vague enough to apply not to only to the religious beliefs of the anti-LGBT activists behind these bills (and trust me, these crypto-fascist faiths are every bit as virulently homophobic) but also their own beliefs.

After all, if discrimination by religious belief is permissible under Indiana law -- or to be precise, if someone's (including businesses' and corporations') “exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened” by anti-discrimination laws, then they can use the law as “a claim or defense… regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding” -- then it stands to reason that this would include religious beliefs that discriminate against blacks, Jews, and all other nonwhites.

That's where it's helpful to know what these beliefs look like. These are belief systems that still exist in places like Indiana and Illinois and Montana and California, dotted in small pockets all around the country. And the new spate of "religious freedom" legislation is like a dream come true for them. The essential argument is the same one they have been making for years -- that the law shouldn't require them to serve or do business with people their religious beliefs forbid them from engaging with.

Let's take, for example, the World Church of the Creator, aka the Creativity Movement. It was founded by the man who invented the wall-mounted electric can opener: Ben Klassen, a Florida real-estate salesman and a German immigrant.

Most of us know about the WCOTC's exploits after Klassen voluntarily joined the Great White Father in the sky in 1993 via an overdose of sleeping pills. At that point, there was a brief struggle for control of the church, which eventually wound up in the hands of the current Pontifex Maximus, Matthew Hale.

Hale's main bases of operations were Illinois and Montana, both of which had relatively small cores of followers who were extremely active in spreading the word of their faith, which is explicitly hostile to both Christianity and Judaism, instead laying claim to an independent belief in white people as the ultimate divine creation of God.

One of the better-known disciples who acted on his religious beliefs in a very public way was Benjamin Smith, a close associate of Hale's who went on a three-day murder spree targeting various minorities, including a former college basketball coach, a number of Orthodox Jews, and a Korean economics student. He shot himself when cornered by police.

WCOTC is a particularly vile religion, embodied by the various "Gospels" left behind by Klassen, who enjoyed a couple of terms in the Florida Legislature. His foundational text, Nature's Eternal Religion, is one of the most nakedly vicious and hate-filled pieces of eliminationist trash ever written. It doesn't help that Klassen's writing style, beyond the shock value of its viciousness, is actually quite anodyne and dull-witted.

Here's an excerpt from his No. 2 text, The White Man's Bible. This excerpt comes from "Creative Credo No. 29: Who Needs Niggers? Or, Elimination of the Black Plague:"

The present-day scourge in the form of the Black Plague in the midst of the White Race has no such beneficial compensations. Today's Black Plague is spelled niggers. It is more menacing, more deadly and persistent than the Black Death of the middle ages ever was. Today the niggers in America (also England and elsewhere) are multiplying at an explosive and unprecedented rate. In America the heart of most of the formerly great cities, built by thee genius of the White Man, are being taken over by niggers. ... Our once proud capital, Washington D.C., has deteriorated to the point where it is nearly totally black. It has turned into a dangerous, crime infested black jungle, in which the black animals prowl and prey. Crime is rampant and unchecked, and the once White inhabitants who built the city have long since fled to the outlying suburbs. Even the Congressmen who must commute to the center of the government must do so at dire risk to life and limb.

... Niggers Are Niggers. We use the term "nigger" deliberately in this book and recommend its usage in general conversation and writings by members of our church. As we have stated in a previous chapter, the second dumbest creature on the face of the earth is one who can't or won't recognize its enemies and the dumbest of all is that creature which will actively collaborate with its enemies for the destruction of its own race.

Deadly Enemies. We, of the Church of the Creator, recognize niggers as the foremost amongst our deadly enemies, with the Jews taking top priority. We regard all the colored races as a grave menace to our further existence on this planet whether they be black, yellow, or brown. In summation we will use the term "mud races" in contrast to the White Race throughout this book. ... Nature has made them eternally our mortal enemies, whether we now realize it or not. It is the task of the Church of the Creator to make the White Race acutely aware of this fact, and arouse it to action.

Bottom of the Ladder. Among all these races, the black niggers of Africa are undoubtedly at the lowest scale of the ladder dubiously called the human race. We of the Church of the Creator disclaim any common racial denominator with the niggers, the same as we do regarding monkeys. We regard them as either sub-human or humanoid, and recognize them as being closer to the animal kingdom than any species of humanity as exemplified by the White Race. We firmly vow to deliberately excrete them from the body of the White Racial Community and to forever prevent any penetration and admixture with our racial body. Any society that fails to excrete its wastes soon dies. To us, niggers are black poison, and we regard the Jewish goal of pumping the black blood of Africa into the veins of White America as the most dastardly crime ever committed in all of history.

This is the Pandora's Box the blinkered, hate-driven advocates of "religious freedom" bills -- which in the end should be more accurately labeled "bigotry legalization bills" -- have opened. Lots of luck putting it back in.