Wednesday, 22 September 2010

ACCG Pom Pom Propagandist Warns

The ACCG's hired help, Canadian pompom man John Hooker warns the American: That collectors "rights" are somehow being eroded when the US government decides to take action against people who handle dugup ancient artefacts illegally exported from their source country as well as those illegally excavated in the US. He reminds readers that they may have read of:
an unfortunate woman of frail health who is arrested and jailed because her authorizing signature was found on some phony export permits of Thai ceramics. The stress is too much for her, and medical help is delayed too long and she dies in her cell. The fact that the signatures were forged and this information would have come out in her trial is irrelevant, She is gone and this is a tragedy that could easily have been avoided. Later still, you read of the Feds setting up a sting operation over illicit Indian artifacts where a great number of people are arrested and where even suicides then result. Pots over human lives?
Hmm. First of all the signatures were not on "phony export permits" and neither were they "forged" (he is talking about Roxanna Brown and I think using her 'example' in a inappropriate and disrespectful manner, Roxanna Brown was very much concerned with the ethics of collecting, was concerned about looting. It is very unjust of Hooker to try and make out that she was a victim because she was a collector. In fact, I think he owes her family and colleagues an apology). It is also disrespectful to bring up the family tragedies of the suicides connected with the ill-fated Four Corners bust - especially since the US so-called "collectors' rights" movement did not lift a finger to help these collectors in the glare of the media spotlight, and forged on fighting the state on issues involving collecting objects from foreign countries rather than the wider US collectors' rights they claim to be defending. Maybe Hooker is waving his pom poms at the wrong bit of US gubn'mint?

With regard to what he insists in portraying as an erosion of rights, Hooker suggests:
I imagine that many Americans would start to the think about Founding Fathers, the Constitution, and Bill of Rights at this point -- perhaps you might reach for your dictionary to look up the word "inalienable"(sic)! Am I right? Do you feel that your rights are being, ever so gradually, eroded away? This, for me, is the main issue. Archaeology and collecting are lesser matters and only a fanatic would place them higher than human rights. We have suffered far too much at the hands of fanatics in recent years and too many lives have been lost.
Yeeharrr !!
Well, let us see what "human rights" really are being "eroded" by the CCPIA. Well, actually none at all, because not even the founding fathers would have condoned taking from other nations property you want without their consent (that after all is precisely the issue over which the War of Independence was fought) and what the CCPIA is about is precisely ensuring that the importers have the consent for the export of the archaeological and ethnographic cultural property designated by the MOU.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeeeharr indeed! The gent knows how to enthuse his audience alright. Whenever I hear the Founding Fathers, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights all in one sentence I can't help suspecting someone's trying to justify something that probably can't be in any other way - like grabbing what Greece doesn't want grabbed for instance"!

(That and the freedum to bear automatic weapuns of course....)

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