Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Removing stones from rock piles for "safekeeping"

In the previous post [see here] Norman describes a "Gorget on a Rock Pile" and mentions that there was an unusual "gorget" stone found in the pile. Later the State Archaeologist removed the stone for safekeeping.

I think the ethics of removing a special rock from a pile for "safekeeping" needs some discussion. Does anyone have any opinions about this? I remember Doug Harris, in a YouTube video talking about how removing a rock breaks the "prayer"  - only to then watch him remove a rock and put it back. Clearly removing a rock permanently, and taking it off to a place where they have presided over the destruction of many wonderful things, hardly qualifies as "safekeeping". 

Like any ethical question, I doubt there is a good answer. I just think the state carting off treasures should be done with reluctance. And who the heck is the State Archaeologist anyway? Why does he get to destroy the rock pile? To me it is inconceivable that these are the right people to make that call, or to be the keepers of special ceremonial rocks. Generally such objects are poorly documented, not accessible to the public and, basically, lost for good. I would give you odds, that a member of the public, today, would have trouble even getting to see the "gorget".


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