photo by Sergey Maximishin
This Russian fur farm’s waste-pile showcases what doesn’t make it onto to our runways or into our magazines. A picture is worth a thousand words – or a thousand skinned animals.
Fur is inherently cruel.
There is no kind way to cage a wild animal for its entire life – depriving them of any natural physical or social behavior they evolved to fulfill. There is no kind way to trap and kill animals in the wild – yet an entire industry goes to great lengths to veil the unavoidable reality that fur pelts comes from living, feeling, wild animals who do their best to cry out, and escape their assault.
Fur is unnecessary.
Unless one is homeless, a traditional indigenous person living in cold climates, or in a truly life-threatening situation – there really is no good excuse for wearing fur. Fur performs no better than most synthetics when it comes to retaining warmth. Arctic explorers, alpine climbers, and cold-climate sports and adventurer’s gear typically lacks one thing: Fur. Considering the leaps and bounds textile producers have made in sustainable textile production, including imitation furs, there is no reason to put animals through such incredible amounts of pain and suffering.
Fur has lost it’s original meaning.
Fur no longer communicates protection from the elements, security, luxury, wealth, taste, class or any sort of legitimate rebelliousness. Quite the opposite, fur now is a very strong visual form of communication that says it’s wearer is either ignorant or indifferent to cruelty. Conditions on fur farms explain why fur was recently banned from Oslo Fashion Week runways, and why so many countries are outlawing and phasing out fur farming like Denmark, Scotland, Ireland, The UK, most of Austria, and The Netherlands.
Fur is a lie.
The fur industry is a money making enterprise. It is perpetuated by manipulative, multimillion dollar marketing campaigns that target magazine editors, stylists, fashion students, designers, and fashion consumers. The New York Times recently reported on this. Yet the industry continues to peddle the myth that fur represents luxury, wealth, taste, and class – and they have gone so far as to call fur “eco-friendly“, and even exploit indigenous people’s traditions to accommodate their arrogant, greedy and frivolous use of animals.
Fur is not a “personal choice” issue.
The people making money from fur would like you to believe that this is simply a consumer choice issue. Sadly, choosing between a fur coat and a cruelty-free coat is not the same as choosing between red or pink nail-polish. Nor is it simply a difference of opinion, where the only factors surrounding the issue are you and your opinion vs. me and my opinion. When we consider the fact that there is a perspective conveniently left out of that equitation, and systematically invalidated (that of the animal whose very life and body are at stake, and whose will-to-live and desire to be physically and socially wild, is ignored), the “choice” becomes startlingly clear.
The truth is out there.
So many investigations, documentaries and exposés from Asia, to Europe, to North America contradict the outright lies being told on the pages of fashions magazines across the globe and under the pop-culture limelight. Here are some resources to see for yourself exactly how fur is made. Keep in mind, that while animal advocates stand to gain nothing but peace-of-mind, the fur industry stands to lose billions of consumer dollars:
No One Is Perfect.
Most people who purchase fur garments do not know how they are made – and that’s not surprising, considering the monumental effort to keep the process hidden. Let’s say you have some fur, so now what? If you currently own a fur garment, or inherited one from family, why not donate it to coats for cubs or the homeless and turn a product that represents indifference to suffering into a life-saving object?