Bar Opposes Amendement 3

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Bar Opposes Amendement 3

first_imgBar Opposes Amendement 3 November 1, 2004 Senior Editor Regular News Bar opposes Amendment 3center_img Helps fund effort to defeat the measure Gary Blankenship Senior Editor The Florida Bar has gone on record as opposing a proposed constitutional amendment on the November 2 ballot that would limit contingency fees in medical malpractice cases and possibly other tort matters. The board also approved donating $100,000 to the campaign to defeat the amendment and learned that another $100,000 will be given from the Florida Lawyers Association for the Maintenance of Excellence.The issue also provoked an extensive debate at the board’s October 15 meeting on whether the Bar should become involved in the profusion of constitutional amendments recently placed on the statewide ballot by initiative petitions which many see as inappropriate for the state’s governing charter.In the end, the board decided to limit its action to the contingency fee amendment because of the nearness of the election, but many members said they want to explore the amendment process matter further.The proposed amendment — backed by the Florida Medical Association — would limit contingency fees to 30 percent of the first $250,000 awarded in a malpractice case and to 10 percent above that amount. Some opponents of the measure claim it may affect other tort actions as well, in that “medical liability claim” has not been clearly defined in the law.Bar President Kelly Overstreet Johnson said part of the reason for the last-minute action on the proposal, known as Amendment 3, was that she thought the issue did not fall within the relatively narrow areas where the Bar can lobby. But she said after she was asked to have the Bar consider it, she got a legal opinion that the Bar could act on it and she referred the matter to the Legislation Committee.Legislation Committee Chair Sharon Langer said both Bar Legislative Counsel Steve Metz and Bar General Counsel Paul Hill advised the committee that the Bar could act on the amendment. Tallahassee attorney Barry Richard, who also advises the Bar on legal matters, similarly agreed.The committee then voted to recommend to the board that the Bar oppose the amendment because it restricts access to the courts and limits a client’s rights to enter into contracts.Board member Hal Melville said the amendment strikes at basic legal rights. “I think access to the courts is one of the most fundamental concepts in our legal system,” he said. “Amendment 3 would destroy that for virtually every malpractice action.”The board unanimously passed the two-part motion necessary to adopt the position, first finding it within the purview of the Bar and then approving opposition to the amendment.The proposal by the Budget Committee to contribute $100,000 from the Bar’s operating reserve fund did not go so smoothly, with several members questioning whether that amount given so late in the campaign would have any effect.Budget Chair Jerald Beer said the money would go to buy more advertising time for ads already prepared. Bar President-elect Alan Bookman also announced during the discussion that a $100,000 donation will be made from FLAME, a private nonprofit corporation not affiliated with the Bar, but supported by voluntary donations from Florida lawyers.Board member Robert Rush said that was too much, especially because in recent years the Bar has cut funding for the Dignity in Law public relations campaign aimed at improving the public perception of the legal profession.“That’s $200,000 on this one issue,” he said, adding he also questioned the impact of the proposed amendment. “I could write a contract to get around this amendment every single time. If we’ve got this much money for this, why don’t we increase our public relations campaign?”President Johnson, though, said she found lawyers around the state are anxious for the Bar to act. “We don’t have the time, ability, or money to do anything on our own,” she said. “I have gotten a lot of calls and letters from our membership wanting us to get involved and put our money where our mouth is. I have talked with folks [involved in the amendment campaign] and this money is needed and it will make a difference.”The board voted 18-10 to approve the contribution.The discussion on what, if anything, the Bar should do about the proliferation of questionable constitutional amendments was more wide-ranging. Board member Grier Wells made a motion to add to the Bar’s reasons for opposing Amendment 3 that it would be an unnecessary addition to the constitution. Chris Lombardo added the entire amendment process needs to be studied, noting in 2002 Floridians approved an amendment covering treatment of pregnant pigs. Interest groups, Lombardo said, are learning that instead of going to the legislature they can fund an initiative petition drive and bypass legislative checks and balances on a variety of issues that don’t belong in the constitution.“That’s scary and we are the laughing stock of the country, with the possible exception of California, for our amendment process,” Lombardo said. “What we need to do as The Florida Bar is tell the legislature it’s time to have a constitutional convention. . . with the focus on the amendment process. Anyone with enough money can get an amendment on the ballot.”Other board members agreed with Lombardo, but said the Bar couldn’t raise an appropriateness issue on Amendment 3 without also raising it on other constitutional amendments on the ballot. Those include a proposal to increase the minimum wage in Florida and two amendments proposed by the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers, one of which removes the license of any doctor found to have committed three instances of malpractice; the other makes public adverse incident reports about doctors and health care facilities.Board member Greg Parker suggested the Bar could put out a statement advising voters to carefully review the amendments and their appropriateness without taking a position.But others said it was too complex an issue to be addressed just before an election.Board member Mike Glazer said Wells’ motion could put President Johnson in the awkward position of trying to explain why the Bar had found Amendment 3 inappropriate for the constitution, but hadn’t taken a position on the academy’s proposals.Added President-elect Bookman, “I’m wholeheartedly in support of the concept [proposed by Lombardo] but now is not the time to do it.”Board member Ervin Gonzalez said the board should be very careful about any action that would affect initiative amendments.“We should not as a Bar take a position on putting anything on the ballot when it’s legal,” he said. “The reason we’re taking a position on behalf of The Florida Bar on Amendment 3 is it hurts access to the courts, it hurts health care, it hurts victims of malpractice.“It is dangerous for us to take a position as a Bar that the process we have for the electorate to change the constitution is wrong,” Gonzalez said.The board rejected Wells’ motion by an 8-23 vote, and President Johnson said she would like the Legislation Committee to further study the amendment process.last_img read more

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NBA players union elects female executive director

first_imgThis undated handout photo provided by Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP shows Michele Roberts. (AP Photo/Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP)Michele Roberts has watched basketball for as long as she can remember. It was an easy choice growing up in a home with one TV and two older brothers.When she saw an interview last year with an NBA player and noticed how passionately he talked about trying to improve his embattled union, she wanted to be more than a fan. She wanted to be involved.Now the Washington trial lawyer is the first woman to lead a North American pro sports union.Roberts was elected Tuesday as executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, and she’s eager to provide the leadership it needs after a few difficult years.“They were looking for, not a man, not a woman, they were looking for a personality,” Roberts said in a phone interview. “I think I’m that personality and I intend to be what I have been in my entire practice, singularly devoted to this union. And that’s what they were looking for.“Someone, whether it be a boy or a girl, who understood that this was their union, and they intended to run it, and they were looking for someone who appreciated that and was not going to deviate from that.”Roberts received 32 of 36 votes at a meeting of players in Las Vegas, defeating tech industry CEO Dean Garfield and Dallas Mavericks CEO Terdema Ussery in the final vote.It capped a long and arduous process to replace Billy Hunter, who was ousted in February 2013. Roberts was one of the finalists initially offered to the rank-and-file during All-Star weekend in February, but the process was re-opened under another search committee at the urging of some players and agents.More than 100 players reconvened in Las Vegas this week, and after some tense moments leading up to the vote, Roberts emerged as the winner.“Obviously, I would’ve preferred that it happen sooner rather than later, but I completely understood when there were questions raised about the process,” Roberts said. “Frankly, I would not have wanted them to ignore those questions and not affirmatively address those concerns. I wanted the job in February, but I wanted the job where there would be no questions about the fairness or the process, so I completely endorsed the executive committee to address these questions, and they did and now best I can tell they’re very pleased.”The players considered more than 300 candidates during their 17-month search before picking Roberts, who has been called the finest trial lawyer in Washington by “Washingtonian Magazine.” She said her new job will feature straight, honest talk, just like she delivers to a jury, and the strategizing that made her such a successful lawyer.The search to replace Hunter, who led the NBPA from 1996 until a review of the union was critical of his business practices, leaves players with less than two years to prepare for the next potential collective bargaining talks. Either the union or the league can opt out of the current agreement in 2017.The union has struggled for years with in-fighting and a lack of organization, and the players took a significant cut in their guarantee of basketball-related income — 57 percent to about 50 percent, a drop of hundreds of millions annually in salary costs — in the contentious lockout in 2011. League revenues are on the rise, a new TV contract is set to be negotiated in 2016 and franchise valuations are skyrocketing.“As far as I’m concerned, preparations for CBA negotiations started yesterday,” Roberts said. “It’s at the top of my list of things that I’ve been instructed to begin the process of preparing for, and sure it’s a lot to do, but I’ve never been shy about hard work and long hours, so we’ll get it done. We’ll be ready.”NBA Commissioner Adam Silver congratulated Roberts in a statement, saying he looked forward to working with her “to ensure the continued health and growth of our game.”“The partnership between our players and teams is the backbone of the league, and we are eager to continue working with the Players Association to build this relationship,” Silver said.The fallout from the lockout and the Hunter ouster left the union reeling. But it also made Roberts want to get involved, which will bring the New York native back home.“The more I thought about it,” she said, “the more I thought that would be a great opportunity to do something really important.”___AP Basketball Writer Jon Krawczynski contributed to this report.last_img read more

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Kannibelles no match for Terminal City girls as Vancouver squad captures Western Canadian title

first_imgPlaying against the top teams — the Vancouver side has played 16 games against American teams — has allowed Terminal City to learn the inner workings of the game.“(Terminal City) have five more years of experience in the sport so to be able to come up against them in the second Western Canadian Regional Championships, we’re really happy,” said Beretta Lynch of the Kannibelles, who just happen to be named tournament Most Valuable Player.“We’re super fit and very strong, but it’s just a matter of (Terminal City) having that much more practice,” Lynch added.Kootenay defeated Okanagan/Shuswap Raggedy Rollers Friday before outlasting Red Deer Belladonnas Saturday in semi final action.The tournament is only the second time, and first as Westerns, the tournament has been held.The success of the Kannibelles made it obvious which association would host the 2012 Championships.Last year in Kelowna Terminal City did not attend.E-Ville of Edmonton defeated Red Deer Belladonnas to capture third place.Luludemon was named Team MVP for the Terminal City while Scarlet Bloodbath AK47 earned top marks for the Kannibelles.However, maybe the surprise announcement of the tournament was Lynch earning top individual marks.“As captain I push my teammates very hard and to get tournament MVP I take this award as a team award and a representative of our team and the girls on our team deserved it,” Lynch said.The Westerns concludes much of the all-star season for the Kannibelles.The Kannibelles next action is July 21 in Castlegar against the Spokannibals of Spokane. First jam is 6 p.m.Before that match the Kannibelles players have some league commitments to fulfill and now head back to their respective clubs in the seven-team league — Gnarlies Angels of Rossland, Kill Joys and Lumber Jackies of Nelson, Salmo’s Babes of Brutality, the Valley Vendettas of the Slocan Valley, Castlegar’s Dam City Rollers and the Bad News Betties of Trail.For more information about the West Kootenay Women’s Flat Track Roller Derby League check out the website at http://www.kootenayrollerderby.com/ In the end heart and desire was no match for experience.The Terminal City Roller Girls scored early and often en route to a convincing 159-75 victory over the Kootenay Kannibelles in the final of the Klash In The Kootenays Western Canadian Women’s Roller Derby Championships Sunday at the NDCC Arena in Nelson.Despite losing in the final, the Kannibelles had a soft landing as both teams advance to the Canadian Championships in January 2012 at the site yet to be determined.“I was really hoping this would be the final because we knew the Kootenays have worked so hard . . . and have exponentially taken their game to another level,” said Terminal City skipper Ian McKenzie, AKA Coach McEnroe.“Physically and the stamina they have is far and above all the other teams here at the tournament.”“So we were really happy to play them in the final and really happy with the result,” McKenzie added.From the start of the tournament Friday Terminal City, seeded at the top of the eight-team pool, toyed with the opposition.The Vancouver-based squad first got past Deathbridge of Lethbridge on opening day before advancing to the final with a lopsided decision over E-Ville of Edmonton Saturday.And Sunday Terminal City kept on steamrolling the opposition, this time the Kannibelles, an all-star team from the West Kootenay Women’s Roller Derby League.Working the transition from offence to defense in what seemed like a blink of an eye to the Kannibelles, Terminal City took the lead minutes into the game and never looked back.“In Vancouver we’re part of the WFTA, which is the American affiliation for all of flat track (roller) derby . . . and you have to be a member to be ranked,” McKenzie explained.“We’re ranked 16th in the West Division (of the WFTA) but being ranked means we get to play American teams which are using all different types of strategies.”last_img read more

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SANTA YSABEL STAKES QUOTES – SATURDAY FEBRUARY 28, 2015

first_imgJOCKEY QUOTES KOSTA HRONIS, STELLAR WIND, WINNING OWNER: “Her maiden win was very impressive. We went and took a look at her and we were impressed with what we saw. She’s looked so good here in the mornings. She’s so fluid, she just floats over the track. She ran great and I thought her gallop out was very strong.”NOTES: Winning owners Kosta and Peter Hronis are from Delano, CA. KENT DESORMEAUX, LIGHT THE CITY, SECOND: “We were similar in placement to the Las Virgenes but it was a completely different race. We were crawling today and really sprinted to the wire. It turned into a typical turf-style race where it’s slow early but you sprint late.“She was full of run under the wire but she had one that out-sprinted her. She’s obviously very good.” TRAINER QUOTES JOHN SADLER, STELLAR WIND, WINNER: “She’s trained really, really well. When she got here, her hair was about this long (holding his hands about four inches apart). It was so cold in Maryland, I think she was glad to get out here in this good weather.“I want to thank David Ingordo; he found her for me. He was the agent on the deal, and the previous trainer (Donald Barr) did a nice job. She won easily when she broke her maiden back there with a pretty good number. She trained really well here so I was looking forward to this race today.”Asked if the Santa Anita Oaks (Grade I, $400,000, 1 1/16 miles on April 4) would be next: “That would a logical spot at this point . . . I think she’s going to be better at a a mile and an eighth, a mile and a quarter.” -30- VICTOR ESPINOZA, STELLAR WIND, WINNER: “John told me to come and work her so I could know her well. I like her, she’s so smooth and the way she worked was so nice. I was talking with John today and I told him how excited I was for her race.“I wanted to break and let her do whatever she wanted to do; I didn’t want to irritate her, just make her happy. They slowed the pace down so I had to move out a bit. They were walking up front so I had to press the pace by the three-eighths pole. She was just waiting for me to command her. I knew I could just shake the reins a little bit and she would go. I think farther for her would be better.”last_img read more

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Warriors’ Steph Curry breaks left hand after collision with Suns’ Baynes

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO — Warriors guard Stephen Curry exited Wednesday’s game against the Phoenix Suns in the third quarter with a broken left hand.The Warriors confirmed the news on Twitter after performing X-rays on Curry.Three-and-a-half minutes into the quarter, Curry drove for a layup and was fouled by Suns center Aron Baynes when he fell head first into the restricted area. The 6-foot-10, 260 pound Baynes fell with him, and landed on Curry.Here’s the play where Steph Curry hurt his wrist. He …last_img read more

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Saru one of world’s top two

first_imgJubilant Springbok fans at the victory parade held in Cape Town after the team’s second crowning as world champions in October 2007. (Image: Cape Town daily photo) A Springbok supporter. (Image: Nelson Mandela Foundation) One of the most enduring moments in sporting history – Nelson Mandela, wearing a replica of Bok captain Francois Pienaar’s number 6 jersey, hands Pienaar the Webb Ellis trophy when the Springboks first took the title on home soil in 1995. (Image: IRB Rugby World Cup 2007)Janine ErasmusThe South African Rugby Union (Saru) has successfully managed to overcome recent controversy and uncertainty to be named by the International Rugby Board (IRB) as the second-best rugby administration in the world. Rugby’s world governing body placed only the Welsh Rugby Union ahead of the local organisation.The announcement was made by current Saru president Oregan Hoskins, who said that he was delighted with the great honour for Saru. Hoskins added that his vice president Rautie Rautenbach, also head of the East Gauteng-based Falcons provincial union, had made known the contents of an IRB report which named Saru as one of the top two rugby administration bodies in the world.“It is so heartening because a few years ago Saru was in a state of disarray with all the infighting,” said Hoskins. “So we are really pleased. It is a great feather in our cap.”The local authority has overcome serious challenges that arose a few years back, with vicious infighting and back-stabbing among management tarnishing the local image of the game in South Africa and internationally. At one stage government was forced to intervene to quell the hostilities.However, the new board has worked hard to transcend the blemish on Saru’s record, keeping debates discreetly in the boardroom instead of airing them in the press as the previous administration did.“Communication at all levels in Saru has improved significantly this year,” commented Saru CEO Johan Prinsloo. “It is important for us as an administration to function well because we are one of the top rugby nations in the world and we want to lead by example.”The Springboks, South Africa’s national rugby team, are currently ranked second on the IRB’s world rankings, just three points behind New Zealand’s formidable All Blacks. Among their supporters is former president Nelson Mandela, who has been seen wearing a Springbok rugby jersey on a number of occasions.Overcoming the challengesSaru weathered a storm earlier in 2008 when officials from the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Sport described the sport as “racist” and “for criminals”, sparking a storm of outrage amongst officials and rugby followers alike – many of whom are not white.The committee also attempted to have the iconic national rugby emblem, the Springbok, removed from the jersey altogether, saying that it was “divisive” to the nation owing to its history as the symbol of a formerly white-dominated sport. The Springbok, South Africa’s national animal, sits traditionally on the left side of the jersey, in pride of place over the heart. It will now move to the right side, to be replaced by the King Protea, South Africa’s national flower.Then there was a dispute over ownership of the Springbok emblem, with both the national Department of Sport and Recreation and Saru claiming that right. It finally emerged, after an investigation by a top firm of intellectual property lawyers, that the sport ministry is not the legal owner of the Springbok rugby emblem. The firm could not say, however, whether Saru or its business division SA Rugby was the owner.And in spite of inflammatory comments from controversial Springbok and Western Province player Luke Watson that the Springbok jersey was “a burden” and that it nauseated him to wear it, Saru has had the last laugh as it has been acknowledged for its smooth operation by international rugby’s highest authority. Watson has since reversed his stance.UnificationSaru arose out of the old South African Rugby Football Union and was established in 1992 after the amalgamation of two rugby bodies – the whites-only South African Rugby Board and the non-racial South African Rugby Union. The body is based at Newlands in Cape Town, home of the world-famous Newlands rugby and cricket stadiums, both of which boast the spectacular Table Mountain as their backdrop.The establishment of the new rugby administration body also meant that South Africa could be readmitted to world rugby – the country had been ostracised for eight years during the tenure of the former apartheid regime.Saru, which became known by its current name in 2005, has since formed a new business arm known as SA Rugby, which oversees all commercial matters such as branding, media rights, financial and medical services, and merchandising.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Contact Janine Erasmus at [email protected] articles:The other Rugby World CupKick start for rugby programme Useful linksSouth African Rugby UnionSA RugbyInternational Rugby BoardDepartment of Sport and RecreationSasol – Springbok rugbylast_img read more

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Beef Quality Assurance Program’s online certification hits a milestone

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest More than 50,000 cattle producers have been certified through the Beef Quality Assurance program’s new online learning system since it was first offered in February 2017. Throughout the country hundreds of thousands have now become BQA-certified through in-person and online training, with an estimated 80% of the U.S. fed beef supply now touched by BQA-certified operations.The beef checkoff-funded BQA program is a nationally coordinated, state implemented program that provides systematic information to U.S. beef producers and beef consumers of how commonsense husbandry techniques can be coupled with accepted scientific knowledge to raise cattle under optimum management and environmental conditions. BQA guidelines are designed to make certain all beef consumers can take pride in what they purchase — and can trust and have confidence in the entire beef industry.Online BQA training provides 24/7 access to the program through a series of videos and animation. While in-person training is still available through numerous sessions conducted by in-state BQA coordinators throughout the country, online certification provides a chance for certification at any time. Three courses are available (cow/calf, stocker/backgrounder and feedyard) to deliver a program that most closely aligns with the individual’s operation. The certifications are also available in Spanish.“Beef producers recognize that quality is everyone’s responsibility, but many don’t have the opportunity to attend in-person training,” said Bob Smith, DVM, chair of the BQA Advisory Board. “These producers still want to assure that practices on their operations are conducted under BQA-qualified standards. While in-person training provides important knowledge and useful cattle handling and husbandry skills, the online BQA program is a valuable option that can deliver critical information and training anytime and anywhere.”For information on completing online BQA training, go to https://www.bqa.org/certification. For more information on the BQA program, contact DeCoite at [email protected]last_img read more

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Which Camera Movement Should You Use — and When and Why?

first_imgShooting HandheldShooting something organically is a goal shared by many filmmakers. You want to make something honest, real, cheap, and (most importantly) you want to connect with your audience. I’m here to make the case for why shooting handheld isn’t always the best solution. If you’re looking at major motion pictures as a reference point, you’ll note that the best stories aren’t always told through the motion of the camera — rather, they rely on carefully composing the characters within a smooth shot. You’ll notice the smoothness of your vision if you stand up and walk around the room. It’s almost as if there is in-body stabilization built into your brain, acting as a gimbal of sorts.Shooting handheld is perfect for a variety of different shots and moments throughout your film. Action movies tend to use the shaky handheld aesthetic to bring the viewers in while making them anxious, then spit them out once the violence concludes. Directors like Paul Greengrass, Christoper Nolan (with the Dark Knight films), and plenty of others all block their scenes with the handheld view.Going for SmoothOn the other hand, filmmakers like David Fincher and Paul Thomas Anderson favor the slow, smooth, steady camera work that acts as the point of view for the audience. Slowing things down and using a gimbal or a Steadicam puts the viewer in the characters’ shoes and immerses them in the narrative world.But, if you want to slow things down even more, go for complete stillness. Set your camera up on a tripod, carefully compose the shot according to the space at hand, and let the story unfold right before a fixed lens.There’s No Right WayThe beauty of filmmaking is that every aspect of the production process offers both blessings and curses. In this instance, each camera move can work in any type of scene — the question is should it? Go ahead and shoot handheld as much as you want. The only thing that matters when it’s all said and done is whether or not the story is engaging. Everything we do as storytellers is about figuring out how to tell the most compelling story possible, no matter how you do it.Top image via welcomia.Looking for more filmmaking video tutorials? Check these out.Video Tutorial: Build Your Own $50 Car-Side Camera MountThe Benefits of Working with 4K Footage in a 1080 SequenceWhat Else Can You Do with Your 360° and VR Video Footage?Everything to Know About Layer Styles in After Effects7 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Blackmagic’s URSA Mini Pro From expansive dolly moves to intimate handheld shots, there’s a range of camera movements for every shot. But which one works best for the story?The bottom line is that camera movement should either cater to the story or get its motivation from the charters. Handheld, dolly, Steadicam, crane, and static shots all are tools to cater to the film, not detract from it. Understanding the origins of these shots can better your skills when it comes to capturing them on set.In this video, I’ve broken down several of the camera movements I use most frequently — and when it’s appropriate to use them.last_img read more

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Assam government to release 335 ‘foreigners’

first_imgThe Assam government is set to release 335 people who have spent more than three years in detention centres after being declared foreigners. This follows the May 10 order of the Supreme Court to conditionally release such people lodged across six central jails – also serving as detention centres – and the Centre’s message on July 23 that the Foreigners’ (Tribunal) Order of 1964 need not be amended to proceed.Replying on behalf of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal to a question in the 126-member Assembly on Monday, Assam Industries Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said 1,145 people declared foreigners by 100 Foreigners’ Tribunals across the State were lodged in the detention centres till July 9 this year.last_img read more

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Meet Matthew And Camila McConaughey For Charity‏

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