Dallas Safari Club wants US government to lift ‘arbitrary and capricious’ ban on importing ivory from African countries


Robert Wilonsky, Dallas Morning News

Date Published
The same local organization that auctioned off the right to hunt an endangered African rhino — in the name of preservation – is now asking the federal government to reverse its ban on importing “sport-hunted African elephant trophies” taken from Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
Via Ammoland.com, but of course, we discover that the Dallas Safari Club is trying to convince the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from lifting its 2014-long ban on importing ivory from those two African nations.
The feds maintain the ban is necessary because “questionable managementpractices, a lack of effective law enforcement and weak governance have resulted in uncontrolled poaching and catastrophic population declines of African elephants in Tanzania.” And things are even worse in Zimbabwe, where, the USFWS maintains that current numbers reveal a “significant decline in the elephant population.” The feds also point to the horrific 2013 incident in which poachers felled 300 elephants using cyanide.
The Dallas Safari Club, of course, disagrees, calling the government’s actions “arbitrary and capricious.”
“Elephants in areas of Zimbabwe are severely overpopulated and destroying their habitat,” insists a DSC release issued this week. “Regulated hunting provides needed management. DSC is hopeful that this and other evidence will help the agency see that broad-brush actions such as nationwide bans have no basis in science or law and are bad public policy. Combating criminal ivory traffickers by regulating legal hunter-conservationists, DSC officials say, is an ill-conceived, knee-jerk response by regulators or, more probably, politicians looking for photo-ops so they appear to be doing something about the abhorrent problem of elephant poaching.”
In related news, The Piano Man himself today came out in support of proposed New York legislation that would make the importing of ivory illegal.
“I am a piano player,” Billy Joel wrote on his website today. “And I realize that ivory piano keys are preferred by some pianists. But a preference for ivory keys does not justify the slaughter of 96 elephants every day. There are other materials which can be substituted for piano keys.”
Now, if only someone would outlaw “We Didn’t Start the Fire.
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