A great letter to send to your Governors


There is nothing good to say about New Jersey's pending Ivory Ban, S.2012/A.3128. It starts by citing every exaggeration and misrepresentation that the federal government and NGOs have spread about poaching and the US ivory market for months. It was introduced on May 8th and flew through both legislative houses before anyone who owns or works with ivory had a chance to react. Its key provisions are:

  • Bans all ivory from any animal (elephant, hippo, mammoth, narwhal, walrus, whale, etc.)
  • Makes it unlawful to import, sell, offer for sale, purchase, barter or possess with intent to sell any ivory or ivory product
  • No exception for antiques
  • Only allows conveyance to a legal beneficiary of an estate after death or in anticipation of death
  • Reserves discretionary authority to New Jersey to allow ivory to change hands for "educational or scientific purposes"
  • First Offense penalty - minimum $1000 fine or 2x total value of ivory, whichever is greater
  • Second Offense penalty - minimum $5000 fine or 2x total value of ivory, whichever is greater
  • Upon any conviction, the court shall order the seizure of all ivory, ivory products . . . involved in the violation for basing the value of the penalty. After sentencing, the court shall order the seized ivory transferred to the Department of Environmental Protection for proper disposition.  The DEP, at its discretion, may destroy the ivory or donate it to a museum, university or research group.

This bill is all about criminalizing ivory without doing anything to fight ivory smuggling or stop elephant poaching. This ban has already passed the NJ Assembly and the NJ Senate. Only Governor Christie's signature is needed to make this law.

​​The Elephant Protection Association has already written to Governor Christie imploring him to stop the New Jersey Ivory Ban. Click Here to see our letter

You can contact Governor Christie in any or all of the following ways:

  • Send a message online at http://www.state.nj.us/governor/contact/
  • Call him at 609-292-6000
  • Write to Office of the Governor, PO Box 001, Trenton, NJ 08625
  • E-mail him at Constituent.Relations@gov.state.nj.us

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Tags: Ban, Ivory, act, now

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Comment by Greg Dash on June 27, 2014 at 9:36

As I suspected before - this law has nothing to do with ivory. This law is designed to introduce a precedent of "guilty until proven innocent" into US legislature. Welcome to Soviet Union of America!

In Memoriam
Comment by Robert Burris on June 22, 2014 at 19:23

The definition of an Antique is an object that is 50 years old or older. They are redefining the word with something 100 years old or older. They have changed the laws and the language, nothing will stop these people.

Comment by Jan Carter on June 22, 2014 at 18:46


Although NJ is considering an across the board act the FWC is wording this in a way that makes me shiver

To begin implementing these new controls, federal Departments and Agencies will immediately undertake administrative actions to:

  • Prohibit Commercial Import of African Elephant Ivory: All commercial imports of African elephant ivory, including antiques, will be prohibited.
  • Prohibit Commercial Export of Elephant Ivory:  All commercial exports will be prohibited, except for bona fide antiques, certain noncommercial items, and in exceptional circumstances permitted under the Endangered Species Act.
  • Significantly Restrict Domestic Resale of Elephant Ivory:  We will finalize a proposed rule that will reaffirm and clarify that sales across state lines are prohibited, except for bona fide antiques, and will prohibit sales within a state unless the seller can demonstrate an item was lawfully imported prior to 1990 for African elephants and 1975 for Asian elephants, or under an exemption document.
  • Clarify the Definition of “Antique”:  To qualify as an antique, an item must be more than 100 years old and meet other requirements under the Endangered Species Act.  The onus will now fall on the importer, exporter, or seller to demonstrate that an item meets these criteria.
  • Restore Endangered Species Act Protection for African Elephants:  We will revoke a previous Fish and Wildlife Service special rule that had relaxed Endangered Species Act restrictions on African elephant ivory trade.
  • Support Limited Sport-hunting of African Elephants:  We will limit the number of African elephant sport-hunted trophies that an individual can import to two per hunter per year.

I dont like the wording that makes you guilty of anything without due process.  I also take offense to the fact that they are telling us this will help save the elephants BUT you can get a permit to kill 2 and import your "trophies".

The elephant is a majestic animal and mankind has no right to shamelessly just kill them for what amounts to harvesting body parts.  IMHO, this is a play to interject guilty without due process into law and they are doing harm to a great cause by utilizing tactics that just wont work.  I believe it will drive the black market prices up, making the receivers of poached ivory happier, not less inclined

Comment by Michael D. on June 22, 2014 at 17:52

So why is the US putting such a harsh ban on ivory? Dealing in ivory will be analogous to dealing in heroin.

After China, the US is the largest market for "illegal wildlife artifacts". Ivory trades like diamonds on the world market currently going for $1500+/lb. Its prime usage is ornamentation.

US government investigations have found that legal sales of ivory (in the US and the world) disguises the black market very easily. There’s always "wheeling and dealing" in the trade no matter who's buying. So it's not just the black market but the legit market that's involved and intertwined - from the source to buyers to exporters to shippers to wholesalers to artisans (Hong Kong is to ivory what Antwerp is to diamonds) to distributors to wholesalers of finished goods to retailers to buyers. There's plenty of opportunity to slip in illegal ivory. That's why the ban is so complete. It's illegal like heroin or private surface-to-air missiles or human trafficking. Who will suffer in the US for this - those who can't get a piece of the action anymore.

(info comes from the Washington Post)

In Memoriam
Comment by Robert Burris on June 22, 2014 at 12:01

I think the Black Market price for Ivory will go up and make it even more attractive and profitable for the poachers. This law will have a reverse effect on the elephants.

Comment by Jan Carter on June 21, 2014 at 19:18

I suggest we all vary the letter to meet our state and send!!!!

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