You can no longer, (and shouldn’t) sell ivory, so now what?
I have a small antique ivory carving of a lion that I inherited from my grandmother a few years ago. It sits on my shelf, baring its little teeth and long tail. I also have a small antique Japanese Netsuke carved from Hornbill ivory (an endangered species). It depicts a small baby and an old man, each with delightful expressions.
Both of these little treasures were beautifully carved during an era when there was no concept of an endangered species, or animal rights. But the world’s elephants are at risk from poaching, and the endangered Helmeted Hornbill bird’s casque is supposedly worth 5 times that of ivory on the black market.
I will never sell these out of principle, but I am left with a dilema: Leave them for my heirs to figure it out? Bury them? Or perhaps I will do what my teenager suggested and post a ceremonial smashing on YouTube.