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Sea turtle- Bows with frogs made of sea turtle coming from China?


GMM22
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Why would it be any more disgusting than using ivory or wood or meat eating for that matter?

I think there were discussions in the past touching upon this area. lversola, an attorney although not speicializes in this area, shed some light on it.

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I think it is not legal in the US. But that is totally unjustified. In China turtle is common food. Turtle soup is a delicatesse. There is nothing against using the shell for other purposes in stead of throwing it away. It is different from ivory. Elepehants are killed because of the ivory. Turtles are not, and turtles are as far as I know not an endangered species.

I visited this and other shops last month in Shanghai, and you can buy turtle shell mounted frogs everywhere.

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"Why would it be any more disgusting than using ivory or wood or meat eating for that matter?"

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Although the question is not directed to me, I feel compelled to offer an answer.

Wood is obviously different as it is inanimate. As for the others, (ivory and the meat), I happen to be a vegetarian (although I was a meat eater for many years) so I can relate there as well. To some the disgust is equivalent.

The wholesale slaughter of endangered species for the most trivial of purposes (like fine dining or violin bows) is in discord with sustaining the planet or its inhabitants.

After checking, I see that ALL sea turtles are on CITES protection list. Just because sea turtles are common for soup or bows in a certain part of the world, it only means that they have chosen not to abide by CITES like the other 115 nations who do.

The truth remains that humans are very efficient at massacring everything that moves. Being a realist, I am aware that a certain amount of "culling" of animals for their uses is inevitable, especially since animal products often offer advantages that modern materials cannot exceed.

For me, the boundaries are easy to define. Any culling should be done as humanely as possible, and only of species that are abundant. Of course such criteria is often not met. In fact, many nations or societies do not even recognize the importance of such things and atrocious acts occur everywhere, culminating in the enhancement of pain for animals prior to death in order to satiate some bizarre stream of thought.

It is all a blot on "humanity". It is not the only one. It is not even the worst one, but it is a blot nonetheless.

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There are some interesting ramifications to the CITES and other such legislation geared to protection of endangered species. The two peculiarities that I find interesting is that Baleen (Whalebone) is illegal, despite the fact that it washes up on the shores of the American Northwest all the time. I believe there is an exception in the law for First Peoples to gather (and sell) Baleen (as there are exceptions for First Peoples to hunt whale).

And I recently read of a case of Ambergris -- found on a beach fifty years ago -- which would be pretty valuable if it were possible for the 80 year old woman who inherited it to sell it on the open market. It isn't.

And Ambergris surely does not lead to the hunting of whales, as it is whale vomit. I guess the idea is that it is possible to find Ambergris inside a whale.

So there is no distinction between found material (washed ashore in accordance with Ma Nature's Way) and culled material (taken from hunted or poached animals).

I would assume, in the current case, that it isn't illegal for the Chinese makers to use Tortoise Shell (as they are no signatories to CITES?), but it would definitely be illegal for him to ship it to the US or the UK or Canada.

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Further on Tshell and Ivory Frogs.

It is not illegal to own them in the US. It is only illegal to export them, without special licenses -- say if your household was moving to the UK, to another CITES signatory. The exceptions to this are somewhat confusing. There is an exception for the material if it can be shown to be antique (100 years prior to date of travel); and I believe if the material was "worked" prior to 1974.

In any case, it is much more difficult to move such material across the border if it is for commerical purposes -- Tarisio recently lost a case in which three fine bows were confiscated en route to a showing in London -- than it would be for personal use.

As to the 1) ethics of using such material and 2) the efficacy of current legislation in effecting the illicit trade in such material -- I confess to a certain ambivalence on both counts.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

Wood is obviously different as it is inanimate. As for the others, (ivory and the meat), I happen to be a vegetarian (although I was a meat eater for many years) so I can relate there as well. To some the disgust is equivalent.


Thank you for your answers, GM22.

Just FYI, from a biological standpoint, trees also have "life" although they cannot move. The common way to obtain wood is to cut down trees unlike ivory teeth and T-shells. Admittedly, human can slaughter elephants or Sea turtles to obtain their teeth or shells, these material can also obtain when the animals die before humans get there.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

The wholesale slaughter of endangered species for the most trivial of purposes (like fine dining or violin bows) is in discord with sustaining the planet or its inhabitants.


How about cutting down all that trees to make instruments/accessories, furniture and constructions so on and so forth? You think it is justified just because some people happen to be vegetarians?

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

The truth remains that humans are very efficient at massacring everything that moves. Being a realist, I am aware that a certain amount of "culling" of animals for their uses is inevitable, especially since animal products often offer advantages that modern materials cannot exceed.


I totally agree with you on the massacring point. However, humans also "massacre" things that don't move. More and more environmentalists are crying out loud for the loss of trees, which in turn affects the holding of the dirt especially on the mountain slopes.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

For me, the boundaries are easy to define. Any culling should be done as humanely as possible, and only of species that are abundant. Of course such criteria is often not met. In fact, many nations or societies do not even recognize the importance of such things and atrocious acts occur everywhere, culminating in the enhancement of pain for animals prior to death in order to satiate some bizarre stream of thought.


When I was growing up, one of my favorite TV programs was animals in the wild. In the natural habitat of wild animals, they fed on other animals for their own survival (and their off-springs, of course). I had not seen any predators perform "humane" act on their preys. Although I don't advocate undue cruety to animals or other humans for that matter, I tend to feel that some groups are out of line. Just my opinion. Since I was so turned off by Bush-Kerry debate and the 911 hearing etc, I have not turned on my TV for a couple of years. Maybe I am too out of date in my knowledge of animal life. Wild animals might have learned from humans to be nice to each other even in a predator-prey relationship since I turned off TV a couple of years ago.

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Ideally, endangered animals found dead could or should be used. I for one would not find their use objectionable as long as it could be proven that the animal was not hunted.

I have little knowledge of the current CITES regulations, but I would hazard they are very difficult to enact or enforce. I'm also sure it is imperfect, but it's probably the best that can be hoped for at present.

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One of my classmates from elementary school whose father had a turtle (or another kind, but looks like it?) business. They raised turtles for a living. I always enjoyed playing with little turtles, and was given as many turtles as I desired. I was a little busy kid, in fact, too busy playing with turtles to ask.

I suspect that turtles used in the turtle soup might be farm raised. I might be wrong about the farm-raised turtles, but if eating farm-raised salmons are not prohibited, I do not know why farm-raised turtle should carry a stigma even though the wild ones (or close cousins) are endangered.

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Strictly speaking, I used inanimate incorrectly, but the distinction between plant and animal life is obvious. While it is true that humans are good at massacring plant life too, some differences remain.

I think it is a noble purpose for wood to be used for musical instruments. In addition, the quantity of wood used for instruments is so minuscule compared to the other uses it is hardly worth mentioning. Deforestation is not driven by musical instrument makers.

Regarding predators not acting humanely toward their prey, I have heard many similar sentiments as yours before, being that nature is herself cruel. However, just about any act of cruelty can be justified if one wants to look for examples in the wild animal world.

Evolving as an intelligent species means elevating humans from being merely an equal participant in the animal kingdom. We do not need to act cruelly just because other animals do. Many great thinkers expressed similar sentiments, and certainly said it much better than I can. I claim no originality in such ideas save for adopting thoughts of those that I most admired.

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I like turtles. Last summer I helped a thirty-pound snapping turtle (that I almost hit with my car) across the highway to the bog for which he was headed. Strangely, he did not appreciate my efforts in groping him with a cardboard box and carrying him to the other side. In fact, the best he could muster toward me once free was the death stare. Still, I had no desire to eat him. I understood his anxiety.

I had no idea that snapping turtles could be as nimble and powerful as he (or she?) was. I was later informed that this was somewhat foolhardy.

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Evidently the question was directed at me, so I'll answer.

Miles, you're making, essentially, the logical fallacy of a

"slippery slope" argument.  By the course your logic is

running, if I eat meat, why isn't it okay to also slaughter and eat

people?  If my house (and violin) is made of wood, why should

I find wholesale destruction of rainforest to be disturbing (to put

it mildly.)

I find killing an endangered species to provide an ornamental

luxury to be repugnant.  That's it, no equivocating.

I eat hamburgers.  I find veal to be repugnant, and that's

where I have decided a line of cruelty and unnecessary suffering

has been reached.

Native Americans killed buffalo for food, white men killed them

wholesale for sport and genocide.  Can you see the line, or

does the "slippery slope" eliminate all such distinctions.

Though life is not black and white, and rather shades of grey,

there comes a point where you have to decide whether or not it may

be perhaps too shady.

I say that sea turtle frogs is too shady, whilst ebony frogs and

hamburgers are not.  You, evidently, have decided that

rationalizing to absurdity can mitigate the "darker" greys whilst

equivocating them to the "lighter" greys.

I will point out, in closing, that this form of argument is indeed

a logical fallacy.

I personally say it's disgusting.  That is my stand, and I

hope I have in this brief post illustrated a little bit of why.

 Not to be too hostile miles...I think from previous posts

that perhaps I like you, but there it is.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

I think it is a noble purpose for wood to be used for musical instruments.


I wonder whether the tree, which was cut down would care how it was going to be used.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

In addition, the quantity of wood used for instruments is so minuscule compared to the other uses it is hardly worth mentioning. Deforestation is not driven by musical instrument makers.


Do you have stats from an independent study? Not to pick on you, but unless there was an independent study, I can say either way. From what I read, the shortage of wood for musical instruments (including bows) is getting worse and worse everyday. However, to what degree in relation to the total deforestation, I don't know.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

Regarding predators not acting humanely toward their prey, I have heard many similar sentiments as yours before, being that nature is herself cruel. However, just about any act of cruelty can be justified if one wants to look for examples in the wild animal world.


You missed my point. I am not asking you to look for examples in the wild animal world, but to look at NATURE itself.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

Evolving as an intelligent species means
elevating humans from being merely an equal participant in the animal kingdom
. We do not need to act cruelly just because other animals do.


To what extent does Nature allow Homo sapient to be free from the burden of being animal? Just because you are intelligent, you don't need to eat like any other beings (plants and animals)? Are you free from diseases and death? If not, there are certain rules of nature even the most intelligent Homo sapient has to follow.

As stated, I am not advocate cruelty. But not all killings should be labelled as cruel. As far as, endangered species is concnerned, species come and go regardless whether Homo sapient knows it or not. Nature always has its way of rebouncing to a new equilibrium with or without human intervention -- Adaptation and speciation are as old as life itself.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

Many great thinkers expressed similar sentiments, and certainly said it much better than I can. I claim no originality in such ideas save for adopting thoughts those that I most admired.


Thoughts, opinions are not equal to facts. As such, they are always subject to debate/dispute, great thoughts or not. There is always a new school thought born in response to a particular time/era. Then when the trend later is reversed, there is always an opposite school of thoughts to reflect such change in time. In literary histories and theories, there are abundant examples.

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Hunting any animal to the point of extinction is plain stupid.

One can look to water fowl management in the US migratory bird fly lanes as a good example. We nearly over-hunted certain waterfowl at the beginning of last century. It was the hunters themselves, through licensing and limits, that paid for a significant part of the Wild Life and Fisheries to rebuild the populations.

Unfortunately, such relatively enlightened management cannot be counted on in impoverished countries where poaching pays so much more than the average day wage.

Control of banned items like ivory and tortoise shell is not going to be effective if the only means is interdiction. The root cause has to be located in the economies (or lack thereof) and corruption in the desperate countries where poaching is the best means to make a living. Interdiction has only raised the stakes -- and prices -- for the poachers. It hasn't eliminated the allure of the job.

I'd suggest that the trade in such items is like the drug trade. It cannot be eliminated. The best we can hope for is that it is managed. Attempting to eliminate it by outlawing the trade in antique violin bows is like saying that cocaine trafficking is going to be stopped by putting the user in jail. We've pretty much proven that the "Stop the Demand" theory doesn't work.

The best way to stop any trade is to make it unprofitable. I don't see how burning tons of confiscated tusks or stopping tortoise shell bows at JFK accomplishes this.

And, in an aside, the argument that violins and bows do minimal damage compared to other deforestation catastrophes doesn't really hold up if you are going to find tshell and ivory frogs disgusting. I would venture that the amount of these illegal materials that find their way onto musical instruments is fractional compared to other uses.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

Miles, you're making, essentially, the logical fallacy of a

"slippery slope" argument. By the course your logic is

running, if I eat meat, why isn't it okay to also slaughter and eat

people? If my house (and violin) is made of wood, why should

I find wholesale destruction of rainforest to be disturbing (to put

it mildly.)


First of all, the reason for humans not to eat humans has its practical purpose. If the subject humans are eaten, any disease generating agents will be transferred to the person, who eat that human. The same concept applied to other same species eating practice. That is the only reason based upon biology I can think of. The other reason is human emotions, which forms the civilization. Thirdly, there might be a law banning such practice, but I don't know it for sure.

By the way, during Zhou Dynasty (before 600 BC) marriage between the same last name was banned in China. The practical reason came before the "civilzed" reason, if I recalled correctly.

How do you know that during severe condition there was no human eating human incident? It was done for survival--the survived ate the dead body. However, I am not advocating it.

Secondly, which fallacy did I commit?

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

I find killing an endangered species to provide an ornamental

luxury to be repugnant. That's it, no equivocating.


I found it repugnant as well. Who wouldn't? By the way, I found it was even more disgusting that Exxon's former big's retirement package was $400 million (if I recall correctly, it's past 2:00 AM my time). Where are the advocates?

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

I eat hamburgers. I find veal to be repugnant, and that's

where I have decided a line of cruelty and unnecessary suffering

has been reached.


I don't understand this statement. Maybe it's too late?

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

Native Americans killed buffalo for food, white men killed them

wholesale for sport and genocide. Can you see the line, or

does the "slippery slope" eliminate all such distinctions.


Not that fast. Regardless the purpose is, when the demand exceeds the supply, the supply will eventually disappear from the surface of the earth let it be animal or plants. My so-called "slippery slop" theory focuses on the end result.

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

Though life is not black and white, and rather shades of grey,

there comes a point where you have to decide whether or not it may

be perhaps too shady.


I agree. In fact, my view on life since I was in high school is "life is a series of choices/decisions". However, it depends upon how one draws ones conclusion.

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

I say that sea turtle frogs is too shady, whilst ebony frogs and

hamburgers are not. You, evidently, have decided that

rationalizing to absurdity can mitigate the "darker" greys whilst

equivocating them to the "lighter" greys.


I don't think I decided anything yet in my previous posts. I was asking why would T-shell frogs any more disgusting than ivory or wood frogs or meat eating if legality was involved (as you said).

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

I will point out, in closing, that this form of argument is indeed

a logical fallacy.


The reason for it was because I was asking a question. Then you took my argument out of its intended context into yours. I wonder how that would go well as an argument for I don't know what your argument is except for you found T-shell disgusting.

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

I personally say it's disgusting. That is my stand, and I

hope I have in this brief post illustrated a little bit of why.


I have no problems with a person's believe/stand/opinion.

Let me put it this way. As I stated in my post, I know for a fact that turtles can be "farm raised" (just don't know the details). If it is true, to me it is no difference in raising fish, pigs or chicken for food.

Logically, if a turtle is gone for food, why cannot one utilize the shell for something useful. If wood for a musical instrument is "noble" (in GM22's term), why cannot T-shell frog shares some glory as well? I personally like the T-shell frog because it reminded me of those good old elementary school days. In addition, I wonder just how many frogs one turle shell can make.

quote:


Originally posted by:
Banzai

Not to be too hostile miles...I think from previous posts

that perhaps I like you, but there it is.


No worries. I don't think either you (or GM22 for that matter) were trying to be hostile. Rather, I don't think we are on the same page on this T-shell issue. While I don't advocate or like slaughtering for non-essential purposes, I tend to view the world as a whole from the standpoint of evolution--Nature will reach a new equilibrium one way or another.

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GMM22, What about all that innocent broccoli? (sorry, couldn't

resist. I'm actually on your side on this one)

You wrote, "Ideally, endangered animals found dead could or should

be used. I for one would not find their use objectionable as long

as it could be proven that the animal was not hunted. "

-Ah, but there's the rub. What are you going to do? Examine every

shipment, every sale, and ask for photographic proof, along with

certified DNA testing that proves the stuff in the photo is the

stuff being sold? It's simply impossible.

----------------------------------------

Miles wrote, "Maybe I am too out of date in my knowledge of animal

life. Wild animals might have learned from humans to be nice to

each other even in a predator-prey relationship since I turned off

TV a couple of years ago."Miles: Sadly, I don't think they would

have learned it from US.

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BTW:

About six months ago I actually emailed one of those Chinese

bow-sellers, asking how they could possibly be importing

ivory-frogged bows into the USA.  He was kind enough to email

back, but said basically "Gee, I hadn't thought of that."

 About a week later, all of that company's related auctions

said "Mammoth Ivory."

-Except it isn't.  This stuff is pure white.  I don't

know where it comes from, but it 'aint from Mammoths.

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Talking about ivories, I was watching a video with my Thai friend. In the video, they've got too many elephants in Bangok where the elephants actually slept on the streets with their owners, very much like our homeless people here. It was quite comic. So is elephant endangered species or not? By the same token, if turtles are farm-raised, how can they be endangered as well?

I don't know whether I made myself understood or not. Before talking about hunting endangered species being disgusting, shouldn't we establish whether the species of interest are endangered or not? I totally agree: "Hunting any animal to the point of extinction is plain stupid." The same concept applies to plants as well.

quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

I had no idea that snapping turtles could be as nimble and powerful as he (or she?) was. I was later informed that this was somewhat foolhardy.


That's why I only played with the little ones--they were as dumb as I was.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Allan Speers

-Except it isn't. This stuff is pure white. I don't

know where it comes from...


Hmmm, didn't you say it was sent from China? [Gotya! Sorry cannot resist, either.}

There is a shortage in real ivory as I am told by an Italian bow maker. These days he (and I suspect Chinese bow makers as well) used some "alternative" ivory frog. Whatever that was he would not sell it to me lest I would chew him out.

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Federal law prohibits at least sale, and perhaps transfer, interstate. In practice, private individuals generally don't get dinged. Companies selling many items across state lines would gather more interest.

I tested the "private seller" thing by reporting a seller of hawksbill mandolin picks to the appropriate office. He didn't get dinged.

Next test would be to report a commercial seller based in the US, see if they're dinged for it. Anyone see a seller?

Another test would be to report an eBay buyer based in the US who is buying items from China that violate CITES. See if the feds ding them.

I figure that's the real test. Whether the feds will come get you or not. Regardless of what the actual law and implementing regulations state.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
GMM22

A seller on ebay called yitamusic is selling bows with frogs made of sea turtle. Is this legal?

According to ebays rule, it is against their rules to even sell antique turtle/tortoiseshell let alone anything recent.And its doesnt matter what type of turtle species it comes from.

Do people realise that these turtles are literally boiled (whilst still alive)to remove the shell and then thrown back in to the sea often still alive.

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