Monday, 20 April 2015

US Dealer, No Debate

Debate in a number of forums
US coin dealer Dave Welsh is adamant (April 19, 2015):
I don't consider blog posts as being contributions to "the heritage debate." There is no such debate, except perhaps in Mr. Barford's mind, where many other uniquities reside
Mr Welsh apparently regards the heritage as something which is not discussed, and merely there for the US dealer to dictate to the rest of the world what he and he alone is going to do with it. This is quite a common attitude amongst US collectors and dealers ( DOS-2015-0010) who seem unrepentant neo-colonialists to a man.

Nevertheless, the heritage belongs to us all, and whatever wannabe-imperialist American shopkeepers and coin fondlers think, policies on heritage in many countries is a matter for wide public consultation and debate. There is in many civilised countries a lively and informed debate on what the heritage "is" and on many aspects of preservation, and indeed on the commerce in cultural property. Perhaps Temecula, California lags behind the rest of the world in that regard. That does not mean that the debate is not going on in other places, including blogs such as PACHI, Looting matters, Heritage Journal, Conflict AntiquitiesSaving Antiquities for EveryoneThe Punching Bag, Ancient Heritage, Chasing Aphrodite, Cultural Heritage LawyerIt Surfaced Down Under!, Museum Security NetworkTrafficking Culture, Anonymous Swiss CollectorARCAblog, Institute of Art and Law Blog, Plundered Art, etc.

The general public and lawmakers can see the points being made on the side of preservation and can see the poor response from the commercial side. It is all in the public domain and all a matter of public record. I think the tide of wider public opinion is turning against the current no-accountability (no-questions asked) means of trading in dugup antiquities.

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