The question is not one of condeming all that went before us for
their acts. Nor is the question one of continuing down the same
pathways. The question is - How do we as human beings interact with
the rest of the living and non-living earth? For me the answer is to
use the resources of the Earth as we go, wisely. First we should act
to control the activities of the one thing we can control - That is
the results and consequences of human activity. Human control is
gained by politics or war. Gold, silver, platinum, and gemstones are
the valuaeable to all humans on Earth. Humans think indivually or in
small groups and tend to forget that we are all humans. All the
problems I see in humanity are rooted in our inability to put the
past aside in both our current actions and our institutions of
learning. Children are taught at home and in schools the age old
prejudices of one group of humans against another group of humans.
Greed whether for land, water, natural resources, of rocks is still
greed and it is a human trait that we all nned to train ourselves
away from. Rockhounds teach rockhounds. This is not the forum to
discuss how to save humanity. We can discuss how to save rocks.
I just spent most of the day “googling” Child Labor and Gemstones.
What I found was a worldwide story of greed. From the acquisition of
the rough to the final finished piece of jewelry, Children under the
age of 10 are used like slaves. I am talking about children being
removed from their families and used to mine, cut and make
jewelry. This is a story even reported of sweat shops in the USA
using children smuggled into the country to make jewelry.
Only by those of us on this forum acting independently and as a
group can we start to make changes. Start asking questions of your
suppliers of where the rough stones were mined and where they were
cut. There will be compromises to make. You do not want to shut
down all rockhounding, but at the same time you do not want any one
person or group cleaning out all the free material, neither do you
want to lock up the areas forever from any rockhounding. By the way
rockhounding in the USA has counterparts in Mexico, Brazil,
Australia, Madagascar, Africa, Canada, and any other place on Earth
that humans collect rocks without a legal mining permit. They are
rockhounds. Many of us are going to the Quartzite Show this year.
Already supliers from all over the world are bring piles of rocks to
our desert. Ask them if the rocks were obtained through legal mining
claims. Buyers of these rocks fuel the fire that makes the
For many years I have bought rocks directly from mine owners in the
USA. Most of these miners have gone out of business because of
government regulation. Greedheads will be on those old claims
harvesting all the material they can get. At Quartzite you may see
some of the material obtained by the Greedheads. Will you buy it?
Will you ask where they obtained the material?
If we do not police our own actions then the politicians, driven by
humans with interests different from ours, will make laws to police
it for us. Ask questiions.