Knife Organizations are Encouraged to Sign onto Letter Opposing Administration’s Ivory Ban
On April 4, 2014, a coalition letter was sent to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Daniel Ashe from 31 organizations representing a wide variety of impacted communities opposed to this ban. The purpose of this letter was to put the Administration, the Fish and Wildlife Service and the House Appropriations Committee, as well as Members of Congress, on notice that this ivory ban will adversely affect a large number of Americans. and to show in a balanced way as many different communities and industries as possible that would be affected by this ban, without overloading the letter in any particular area. Knife Rights was honored to be joined on the letter by the Custom Knife Collectors Association, the National Knife Collectors Association, the Professional Knifemakers Association and The Knifemakers’ Guild, as well as the industry’s American Knife & Tool Institute. You can read this letter here: http://www.kniferights.org/Ivory_Coalition_Letter_4.4.14.pdf
The next step in our strategy is for each of the various impacted communities to present FWS with their own letter, which can be more specific. Knife Rights, as a founding member of the coalition opposing the ivory ban, has drafted a knife-centric letter for the many knife community organizations and companies to sign onto. You can review a copy of this Knife Community Letter here: http://www.KnifeRights.org/Knife_Community_Coalition_Letter.pdf
PLEASE NOTE: At this stage we are NOT looking for individual signers, ONLY duly authorized signers from organizations or from companies with significant commercial operations and employees. At this time, individuals should be contacting their own Representatives and Senators expressing opposition to this ban. The time for individuals and smaller companies (including custom knifemakers who operate as a corporate entity, etc.) to make their voice heard as a group is coming and we’ll be sure to notify you then. I suggest you sign up for the Knife Rights News Slice newsletter or Like Knife Rights on Facebook or Follow Knife Rights on Twitter to get the latest news and calls to action relating to the ivory ban.
Let me please emphasize that the individual who endorses this letter must be an executive of the organization or company, preferably its President, Chairperson or CEO. See below for a form email to fill out and send to me.
Time is not on our side. I MUST RECEIVE THIS ENDORSEMENT NO LATER THAN APRIL 14, 2014
Also, because many knife organizations are 501(c)(3) non-profits, the question has been raised whether they endanger their non-profit status by endorsing this letter. The answer according to the IRS is very clearly, “no they do not.” I refer you to the IRS website: http://www.irs.gov/Charities-&-Non-Profits/Lobbying In summary, rules that restrict lobbying activities by 501(c)(3) non-profits do not apply to actions by executive, judicial, or administrative bodies and FWS is an administrative body. After reviewing the IRS page, anyone with further concerns in this regard should contact their tax advisor.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.
If your organization or company would like to be included on this letter, please send me an email, no later than April 14, as follows:
Email to: Doug Ritter <DRitter@KnifeRights.org>
Subject: Ivory Ban Knife Community Letter
Body of Message: My name is (your full name) and I am (your executive position in the organization or company) of (your organization or company). As its duly authorized representative, I request you add our name to the Knife Community letter opposing U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposed ban on commercial trade in elephant ivory.
Official Address of Organization or Company:
Organization or Company Website:
Your Phone Number in case of questions:
Thank you for your support.
Knife Rights, Inc.