We use cookies to show content based on your preferences. If you continue to browse you accept their use and installation. More information. >

FMF - Friends of Minerals Forum, discussion and message board
The place to share your mineralogical experiences


Spanish message board






Newest topics and users posts
04 Apr-19:04:37 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 (R Saunders)
04 Apr-17:50:48 Re: collection of sante celiberti - a mineralogical trip through italy (Sante Celiberti)
04 Apr-17:36:55 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Jesse Fisher)
04 Apr-17:27:52 Re: calcite (Bob Harman)
04 Apr-17:17:12 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Bob Harman)
04 Apr-17:07:18 Re: presentation of new members - parrish isaacs from vermont (Sante Celiberti)
04 Apr-16:59:07 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Matt_zukowski)
04 Apr-16:52:13 Re: mines activee names for mineral specimens only (Dehne)
04 Apr-16:13:18 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 - starting to take flight (Don Lum)
04 Apr-15:40:08 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 (Michael Shaw)
04 Apr-14:23:35 Stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 - starting to take flight (Jordi Fabre)
04 Apr-14:23:03 Re: calcite (Vic Rzonca)
04 Apr-14:17:48 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 (Carl)
04 Apr-13:30:57 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Roy Starkey)
04 Apr-13:13:27 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Jordi Fabre)
04 Apr-13:08:44 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Jordi Fabre)
04 Apr-13:05:51 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 (R Saunders)
04 Apr-12:52:19 Re: collection of annemieke en rob schnerr (Rob Schnerr)
04 Apr-12:16:20 Re: calcite (Ricky Hartzog)
04 Apr-12:00:58 Re: what's up with minfind? (Bob Kerr)
04 Apr-11:33:52 Re: stay at home - coronavirus / covid-19 (Bob Kerr)
04 Apr-11:32:36 Re: collection of sante celiberti - a mineralogical trip through italy (Rob Schnerr)
04 Apr-11:27:36 Re: collection of annemieke en rob schnerr (Rob Schnerr)
04 Apr-11:07:50 Re: mines active for mineral specimens only (Josele)
04 Apr-10:00:24 Calcite (Ricky Hartzog)

For lists of newest topics and postings click here


RSS RSS

View unanswered posts

Why and how to register

Index Index
 FAQFAQ RegisterRegister  Log inLog in
 {Forgotten your password?}Forgotten your password?  

Like
65366


The time now is Apr 05, 2020 02:16

Search for a textSearch for a text   

A general guide for using the Forum with some rules and tips
Ethical mineral collecting
  
  Index -> Off-Topic and Introductions
Like
8


View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message

marvinlewinsky




Joined: 04 Feb 2020
Posts: 36
Location: Seattle

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 24, 2020 14:14    Post subject: Ethical mineral collecting  

Ethical mineral collecting

I would like to get some feedback from collectors on the subject of ethical mineral collecting.

I recently saw a video about the mining of Tanzanites in Tanzania and it was disturbing. In that part of the world there is no OSHA, no mining regulations, just the indigenous population being exploited.

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4Xk5qtNqZo

There was a disturbing scene of miners being ‘sjamboked’ to keep them in line.

So, should we avoid buying minerals if they come from areas where human right issues are ignored.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

Peter Lemkin




Joined: 18 Nov 2016
Posts: 269
Location: Prague

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 24, 2020 14:49    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

marvinlewinsky wrote:
Ethical mineral collecting

I would like to get some feedback from collectors on the subject of ethical mineral collecting.

I recently saw a video about the mining of Tanzanites in Tanzania and it was disturbing. In that part of the world there is no OSHA, no mining regulations, just the indigenous population being exploited.

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4Xk5qtNqZo

There was a disturbing scene of miners being ‘sjamboked’ to keep them in line.

So, should we avoid buying minerals if they come from areas where human right issues are ignored.


I'd say the short answer and the ethical answer is the same as for coffee, wood, textiles, fill-in-the-blank: YES! There needs to be more awareness of this outside of the immediate mining areas and especially where the collectors are. Those minerals have been there for millions of years to hundreds of millions of years and I personally can wait until they can be brought out without destroying the environment in any massive way or exploitation of the miners. They deserve a decent wage and working conditions without exploitation and abuse. Period. I'm glad you brought this up. There is a long and growing list of areas of exploitation with the high prices and demand for these minerals as specimens and as gems for jewelry. The phenomenon is not new and I'd hate to guess what % of miners worldwide [including the 'West'] throughout time were exploited and underpaid. In many mining operations miners are forbidden to take specimens for sale - while other mines are for specimens only. It is only the small operations, generally, or the rare one that treats the men who do the backbreaking and often dangerous work with some dignity and fair compensation. When I know about such operations, I avoid buying its products. I wish others would, as well - but many are willing to turn away and say they have 'no control' over what is being done elsewhere by others. Think again.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
1
   

marvinlewinsky




Joined: 04 Feb 2020
Posts: 36
Location: Seattle

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 24, 2020 15:26    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

Peter:

I am glad that you found my post worthwhile.

When one reviews the price of minerals in terms of geographical location, the most expensive often come from the third-world.

There is little doubt that miners in these areas are exploited and in some instances murdered.

I recall Rob Lavinsky talking about the fate of some miners at the Yaogangxian mine that were killed during attempts to recover Bournonite specimens. The miners were removing material from pillars and the mine ceiling collapsed. The miners were removing the material illegally as they were not working for the Yaogangxian mine operators. It got so bad that the Chinese government got involved and outlawed the practice.

I look very carefully at the source of a specimen before buying it.

Suffice it to say that I will not have many gem minerals in my collection – and cost is not a factor – I will not contribute to the exploitation of fellow human beings.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

Peter Lemkin




Joined: 18 Nov 2016
Posts: 269
Location: Prague

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 25, 2020 01:58    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

marvinlewinsky wrote:
Peter:

I am glad that you found my post worthwhile.

When one reviews the price of minerals in terms of geographical location, the most expensive often come from the third-world.

There is little doubt that miners in these areas are exploited and in some instances murdered.

I recall Rob Lavinsky talking about the fate of some miners at the Yaogangxian mine that were killed during attempts to recover Bournonite specimens. The miners were removing material from pillars and the mine ceiling collapsed. The miners were removing the material illegally as they were not working for the Yaogangxian mine operators. It got so bad that the Chinese government got involved and outlawed the practice.

I look very carefully at the source of a specimen before buying it.

Suffice it to say that I will not have many gem minerals in my collection – and cost is not a factor – I will not contribute to the exploitation of fellow human beings.


It is a topic I see rarely to never discussed on forums such as this nor discussed among collectors and dealers. To be sure, not all miners are abused - and there are gradations of being poorly treated to outright work-slaves. I have a friend who is a geologist and works for a large company that sources columbium-tantalum around the World [for ore and not for specimens]. Part of his job is to make sure that the miners are not exploited [or that their conditions are made progressively better].....as well as the technical details of ore concentration and cost to extract it. Not all gem material either is only from abused miners. Each case ane each mining operation needs to be taken on a case-by-case basis and it would be nice if one of the major mineral magazines did some research and expose of good and bad examples of such operations. Yes, a lot of the better mineral specimens come from developing nations where conditions are 'ripe' for exploitation of miners. Many of these nations do not have the infrastructure or the interest [or lack of corruption] to ensure mine and miner safety and decent working conditions/pay/health - so to some extent if there is going to be any control, it will, for now, be left up to those of us in the 'developed' world who purchase these minerals. Those dealers who buy in large lots, if not have exclusive contracts with certain mines or mining operations/operators have a special duty in this regard. Profit is not all. Slavery in the USA and elsewhere was/is very profitable - but it was/is also morally wrong.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

R Saunders




Joined: 28 Jul 2018
Posts: 86
Location: Michigan


Access to the FMF Gallery title=

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 25, 2020 09:03    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

Interesting subject, but I'm a new collector and buy generally at shows or tailgate shows. Where you do not think about when or how it came to market. As for magazine articles I think that due to the threat of libel, it may not be a good idea? In America and probably other parts of the world we are not allowed to bring in "blood diamonds." to sell, or the Krugerrand gold coins.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

Peter Lemkin




Joined: 18 Nov 2016
Posts: 269
Location: Prague

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 25, 2020 10:16    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

Personally, I'm not trying to make people feel 'guilty' for 'just' buying mineral specimens withtout thinking about the ethical and financial situation of the miners who dug the out of the ground. What I'm suggesting is that people better inform themselves and that perhaps there be some entity that keeps track of this matter. They do for other minerals not sold as specimens ['col-tan' being one] and they do for coffee, textiles, electronics and many other commodities - so why not mineral specimens and gem rough?
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

alfredo
Site Admin



Joined: 30 Jan 2008
Posts: 787


Access to the FMF Gallery title=

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 29, 2020 18:16    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

While I was working in Bolivia for 12 years I remember sporadic attempts by well-meaning but ignorant "do-gooders" to banish children from working in mines. Unfortunately, in all poor countries (and in the USA and Europe too in the 19th century when our ancestors were poor) the reality is that children had to work to support their poor families, whether it was in factories, farms or mines. That is not going to stop until a country reaches a certain degree of wealth.

In Bolivia no children are forced to work in mines, they do it voluntarily and proudly, because they make more money than the other kids doing the alternative typical Third World "kid" jobs, like selling chewing gum on the streets, or polishing shoes in bus stations. And the adult miners are quite protective of the children working in their midst. If you have a chance, watch the documentary movie "The Devil‘s Miner", about a 12-year old boy working underground in the famous tin-silver mine in Potosí where phosphophyllite comes from. I met that kid once, selling mineral specimens to tourists. He only worked mornings underground and went to school in the afternoon, and went on to graduate. Perhaps some people would think I was "unethical" to buy a rock from a child miner, but in my view I‘m just helping him support his mother and younger siblings, which he viewed as his duty.

I readily admit that the situation in some other countries (Congo? India?) could be much much worse.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
1
   

marvinlewinsky




Joined: 04 Feb 2020
Posts: 36
Location: Seattle

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Feb 29, 2020 18:30    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

alfredo wrote:
While I was working in Bolivia for 12 years I remember sporadic attempts by well-meaning but ignorant "do-gooders" to banish children from working in mines. Unfortunately, in all poor countries (and in the USA and Europe too in the 19th century when our ancestors were poor) the reality is that children had to work to support their poor families, whether it was in factories, farms or mines. That is not going to stop until a country reaches a certain degree of wealth.

In Bolivia no children are forced to work in mines, they do it voluntarily and proudly, because they make more money than the other kids doing the alternative typical Third World "kid" jobs, like selling chewing gum on the streets, or polishing shoes in bus stations. And the adult miners are quite protective of the children working in their midst. If you have a chance, watch the documentary movie "The Devil‘s Miner", about a 12-year old boy working underground in the famous tin-silver mine in Potosí where phosphophyllite comes from. I met that kid once, selling mineral specimens to tourists. He only worked mornings underground and went to school in the afternoon, and went on to graduate. Perhaps some people would think I was "unethical" to buy a rock from a child miner, but in my view I‘m just helping him support his mother and younger siblings, which he viewed as his duty.

I readily admit that the situation in some other countries (Congo? India?) could be much much worse.

Alfredo:

I have always lived by a time-honored principle – do unto others as you want them to do unto you!

I love my children and my grandchildren and the last thing I would like for them to be is a wage-slave in a third-world mine. I have had the opportunity to travel in my youth, and I have seen many places in third-world – hell on earth by any standard.

When these people have an opportunity to emigrate to the first-world they never ever go back to the third-world – and that speaks volumes!

Exploitation is exploitation whether it is to keep bankers rich or high-end mineral collectors happy.

There are many other reasons too, why some of the richest countries (natural resources) are also host the poorest populations.

Marvin
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

Tracy




Joined: 15 Sep 2006
Posts: 550
Location: Toronto


Access to the FMF Gallery title=

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Mar 01, 2020 12:28    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

marvinlewinsky wrote:

I love my children and my grandchildren and the last thing I would like for them to be is a wage-slave in a third-world mine. I have had the opportunity to travel in my youth, and I have seen many places in third-world – hell on earth by any standard.

When these people have an opportunity to emigrate to the first-world they never ever go back to the third-world – and that speaks volumes!

Exploitation is exploitation whether it is to keep bankers rich or high-end mineral collectors happy.

There are many other reasons too, why some of the richest countries (natural resources) are also host the poorest populations.

Marvin



...This forum is about minerals, not socioeconomics. Can we get back to talking about minerals?

- Tracy

_________________
"Wisdom begins in wonder" - Socrates
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
   

Peter Lemkin




Joined: 18 Nov 2016
Posts: 269
Location: Prague

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Mar 01, 2020 12:38    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

Tracy wrote:
marvinlewinsky wrote:

I love my children and my grandchildren and the last thing I would like for them to be is a wage-slave in a third-world mine. I have had the opportunity to travel in my youth, and I have seen many places in third-world – hell on earth by any standard.

When these people have an opportunity to emigrate to the first-world they never ever go back to the third-world – and that speaks volumes!

Exploitation is exploitation whether it is to keep bankers rich or high-end mineral collectors happy.

There are many other reasons too, why some of the richest countries (natural resources) are also host the poorest populations.

Marvin



...This forum is about minerals, not socioeconomics. Can we get back to talking about minerals?

- Tracy


I say NO. Your position [that of an ostrich or the Chinese moneys 'see/say/speak no evil'] if PRECISELY the problem in the WORLD today!....money and property, toys and personal interests take precident over morality and humanitarianism. It applies in EVERY field and even here in mineral collecting and mineralogy. We are talking about minerals and who gets them for us/ what conditions they might work under/ how they get paid/ if they are being exploited/ etc. Turn a blind eye as you beg to be done [to return to the 'real' subject matter' and you might as well do your collecting at the point of a gun. Morality, ethics, legality, humanity matter. It is my first passion - minerals are second.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
1
   

Jordi Fabre
Overall coordinator of the Forum



Joined: 07 Aug 2006
Posts: 4467
Location: Barcelona


Access to the FMF Gallery title=

View user's profile

Send private message

PostPosted: Mar 01, 2020 12:42    Post subject: Re: Ethical mineral collecting  

Peter Lemkin wrote:
Tracy wrote:
...This forum is about minerals, not socioeconomics. Can we get back to talking about minerals?

- Tracy

...Morality, ethics, legality, humanity matter. It is my first passion - minerals are second.

And the first passion and the purpose of this Forum are the minerals.

There are many other fora about politicians and ethics...

Topic locked.
Back to top
This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Reply with quote
Like
5
   
Display posts from previous:   
   Index -> Off-Topic and Introductions   All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1
    

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum


All pictures, text, design © Forum FMF 2006-2020


Powered by FMF