tetrahedrassface writes: According to the Wall Street Journal, Federal agents again raided guitar maker Gibson this past week seizing several pallets of wood and computer documents. At heart of the issue is the wood that is being used in guitars and whether or not it comes from sustainable sources. The company insists it is being harassed and made to 'cry uncle' to the governments enforcement laws. While, as the article notes, wonderful woods like Madagascar Ebony, Brazilian Rosewood and other fret and tone woods are protected in order to prevent the equivalent of 'blood diamond like trade' in sought after tone woods, the ramafications now extend to guitar sowners. Owners and players are next in sights of this enforcement. If you play a vintage guitar, or a hand built guitar made of old stock woods that were legally obtained years ago, but only recently crafted into an ax, you best not fly with it. John Thomas, a law professor at Quinnipiac University and a blues and ragtime guitarist, says "there's a lot of anxiety, and it's well justified." Once upon a time, he would have taken one of his vintage guitars on his travels. Now, "I don't go out of the country with a wooden guitar." That's right. Recent revisions to various laws and the Lacey Act mean if you carry your guitar across the border and don't have your paperwork and certification in hand, they will seize the guitar and fine you 250.00. So if your planning that dream vacation to France and want to play your acoustic in the air of France (or anywhere else) be forewarned. They are gunning for you.
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