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Most Elephant Ivory Used On Old Guitars Is Now Illegal For Commerce

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Bandmonster

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The feds have now dictated that the vast majority of elephant ivory already in the us can no longer be bought or sold. Got a nice old Martin with an ivory nut or saddle? It can not be sold. It can be confiscated. I'm very small potatoes and I own four guitars with elephant ivory. Imagine the numbers that someone like Gruhn or Buffalo Bros. have. Didn't see that one coming.

Below are several of the salient points bolded from the LA Times article with some of the inevitable LA Times propaganda removed.

The administration will ban the resale of elephant ivory across state lines, except antiques. Sales within a state will be prohibited unless the seller can demonstrate an item was lawfully imported before 1990 for African elephants and 1975 for Asian elephants. People can still own ivory and pass heirlooms to descendants, officials said.

To qualify as an antique under the new measures, an item must be more than 100 years old and meet other requirements under the Endangered Species Act, criteria that sellers will have to demonstrate.

The biggest change will be that law enforcement will no longer have to prove that ivory it seized was illicitly acquired. Owners now have the burden of proof to show they legally obtained it. If they imported it before 1990, for example, they will need to produce export permits from the country of origin and a U.S. import permit.


Isn't that special? Got your import/export permits for a 70 year old piece of ivory that came on your guitar?

Full article here: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-elephant-ivory-20140212,0,7418233.story
 
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smolder

Platinum Supporting Member
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14,492
Yah... folks telling me what I can and can't do with my stuff... kind of pisses me off.
 
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sanhozay

klon free since 2009
Gold Supporting Member
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11,968
it's does far more good than damage. excellent news.
 

walterw

Platinum Supporting Member
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39,243
meh, the "ick" factor aside, i find regular cow bone (especially the unbleached stuff) to be harder and better for nuts and saddles anyway.
 

sanhozay

klon free since 2009
Gold Supporting Member
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11,968
Thing is, it probably won't help the elephants at all. The vast majority of poached ivory goes to china and japan. More feel good poo.

the new law is a boost in the arm for the global concerted effort to end illegal wildlife trafficking and the inhumane/brutal/grotesque concept {for both animal & human lives} of poaching for trinkets.

10 million elephants in 1990, and what 450,000 now? if that?

i'll take a new law everyday that protects elephants over a bone nut on a martin @ gruhns.
 

ismith

Member
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the new law is a boost in the arm for the global concerted effort to end illegal wildlife trafficking and the inhumane/brutal/grotesque concept {for both animal & human lives} of poaching for trinkets.

10 million elephants in 1990, and what 450,000 now? if that?

i'll take a new law everyday that protects elephants over a bone nut on a martin @ gruhns.
So banning 70 year old ivory already in the states will help the elephants how? Your numbers are wrong, but even if they were right, the importation of African ivory into the states has been banned since 1989. Maybe you should hire on with the outfit down in South Africa that's actually fighting poachers, black rhino poachers in particular.
http://www.stoprhinopoaching.com/
 

sixty2strat

Member
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12,260
martin has pretty decent records. might not be so impossible

This is not the law but excerpts from an LA times interpretation not a court or a lawyers reading, nor the exact law. Most likely there will be more details, not the only propaganda I 'am seeing
 

sanhozay

klon free since 2009
Gold Supporting Member
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11,968
the importation of African ivory into the states has been banned since 1989.
so what? the banned wasn't always enforced, loopholes, relaxed law, etc. they crushed almost 6 tones of ivory last year, in the united states; which is one of a largest markets for ivory in the world.

anyway, this is a political discussion. i'm not interested in exchanging in a topic that would require pulling punches.

i think the law is a good step.

regards
 

Delayed Delay

Member
Messages
2,645
I like PRS's approach, use mammoth ivory. Already extinct.
I just wish guitar companies would use the oil from dead baby seals, puppies, and baby monkeys on the backs of the necks... Gives a much smoother and more natural feel than tung oil or any other type of oil.

That, elephant ivory, wood from the last tree in the rain forest, strings from unicorn hair, and blood from child factory workers in China as a nice red finish would make a fantastic and ethical guitar.
 

fewlio

Senior Member
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435
I see constitutional problems with this...that being said I'll let some other deeper pocketed peeps take the test cases through the courts.

Ex post facto law...making something that was legal, retroactively illegal overnight.

Guilty until proven innocent...in America it's supposed to be the other way around..

Denial of property rights without just compensation. For example if the govt seizes land for public use or diverts water from your property, making it less valuable, they are required by law to compensate you. Saying you can't sell your own property is basically the govt devaluing your property.
 

El Fug

Member
Messages
1,923
Very happy to see this. It communicates the right thing to the world, which is vastly more important than a handful of guitarists reselling their old Martins.

Below are several of the salient points bolded from the LA Times article with some of the inevitable LA Times propaganda removed.
:facepalm
 

utterhack

Member
Messages
3,447
nothing in the article to suggest anyone's coming for our guitars and pianos but if they do oh well put a nice new nut on your old martin and BAM problem solved sell away :idea

i'm sure any prospective buyer would appreciate a shiny new nut and bridge anyway.
 

fewlio

Senior Member
Messages
435
The appropriate way to handle this would be to grandfather everyone with heirlooms by letting them easily obtain a piece of paper that allows them to trade or sell their item, and the paperwork always transfers to the new buyer if sold. They could have a grace period where it's easy/no verification of item to get the paperwork now, but after the grace period any old but non registered item would have to be properly authenticated before paperwork is issued. That would prevent any newly smuggled ivory from being legally sold in America, but also protect property rights of law abiding citizens. This is the approach they took with silencers and automatic weapons that were affected by the nfa 1934 law,or some such.

The govt seems to be taking a lazy and antagonistic/arbitrary stance and it seems unnecessary.
 
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