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Why Wear Fake Fur?

Macy’s has been accused of selling real fur labeled as "imitation." Here are the facts of the case:

  • Macy’s website had a Sean John hooded jacket, for $237, with an "imitation rabbit fur collar." It’s "currently unavailable." Hmmmmm.
  • It was made in China (uh-oh).
  • When the Humane Society of the United States purchased the jacket (did my donation go to that?), the label said "genuine raccoon fur." Hmmmmmm.
  • The HSUS is having the fur tested to see what it is. It could be from a raccoon dog, whose fur resembles a raccoon’s, and whom the Chinese love to breed and slaughter for their fur.
  • Burlington Coat Factory has also sold real fur under the guise of fake fur.

Let’s deconstruct:

  • Sean John is that guy previously known as P. Diddy, and he hasn’t met a furry creature he didn’t want to make into a piece of clothing. My money says the fur is from his own dog.
  • Amazon has a "Snorkel Jacket" that looks just like the one in question, "with real coyote fur . . . for those who display the ultimate in good taste." I swear. Check it out. By the way, not that anyone cares, but IT’S A GOOSE DOWN-FILLED JACKET!
  • Does it matter if the source was raccoon dog or a raccoon raccoon? Didn’t she still suffer for her pelt?
  • What about the geese? Why is it okay to pluck a goose, and probably okay to skin a raccoon raccoon, but not okay to skin a raccoon dog or a coyote? Where’s the logic, people!
  • This is what I don’t get: Why would anyone want to wear fake fur that looks so much like real fur that people think it’s real?

Two years ago I went shopping for a winter jacket of some sort, as I hadn’t owned one in six years. I was faced with wools, downs, cashmeres, and maybe even alpaca, who knows. I found exactly two jackets that had no animals, and luckily, a snazzy black number that looked sort of like crushed velvet, by Marc Jacobs, for $500, fit like a glove. Or at least like a jacket.

I went to NYC for various meetings, however, and everyone thought the jacket was, like, seal fur or something. It’s lush and shiny, and suddenly I started seeing what they were talking about. I’ve got news for you: Some anti-fur people are really obnoxious. I was so self-conscious and paranoid that someone was going to toss a can of red paint at me, and I kept trying to get a glimpse at my back to make sure no one put a "murderer" sticker on it. What on Earth must it be like to walk the streets of Manhattan wearing a full-length sable or mink? I’d have a nervous breakdown from all the guilt and the pressure! As soon as I returned home, I purchased an anti-fur button, and now I wear it with my gorgeous jacket, and I’m pissed that I have to do that. But better that than more sneers, jeers, and rude comments. If they only knew I’m a vegan.

So where do you fit in all this? You’re a consumer and you vote with your dollars. Say it with me: Supply and demand. Don’t buy products made from animal skin, fur, and feathers. I know that’s easy for me to say, because it’s currently 82 degrees and it’s almost Christmas. But Patagonia, my favorite non-vegan company, has plenty of cold weather gear that is synthetic. The reality is that, in 2006, no one, I repeat, no one, needs to pay anyone to slaughter an animal to keep warm.

I do think it’s funny that these days companies are accused of passing off real for for fake, rather than vice versa. I’m taking that as a sign of progress.


One Comment Post a comment
  1. Anonymous #

    You said …..

    "If only they knew you were Vegan"

    Actually everyone can know that… just wear another button…lol. I wear 2 buttons on my coat one that says ..Fur is for animals and Go Vegan and no one gets hurts. I will be wearing anti circus and rodeo ones in the warmer weather. I got my buttons on a website called Hell they have so many different kinds and colours that you can get one that matches your coat perfectly.

    You said….

    "What on Earth must it be like to walk the streets of Manhattan wearing a full-length sable or mink? I'd have a nervous breakdown from all the guilt and the pressure!"

    People that wear fur don't have a problem with feeling guilty because I honestly believe they are truly cold, heartless, uncaring people who have lost their since of compassion and are just filled with selfishness. Hmm that reminds me of a button I read that said One fur coat two spoiled bitches. I'm actually thinking of starting to collect buttons because there are just so many great ones out there. One that I am planning to get says on it….Fuck Macdonalds and there's picture of a cow that has Ronald Macdonald in a choke hold….lol. Take a look …its priceless

    I am probably one of those obnoxious anti-fur people you talked about. I think we get that way out of sheer frustration because no matter how many years go by we still have not been able to stamp out fur. When I started protesting outside of fur stores I was 18 years old I never dreamed I would be 43 years old and still doing that. I wear my vegan and anti fur button as mentioned and I plan to wear more types on me and my hand bag. I never though I would wear buttons but I'm at a point in my life now where my personal comfort (people staring at me) is no longer a concern. I am totally numb. I am now willing to do anything to get animal rights messages across. Yes even if that means I looking like some silly billboard…lol

    Laura Lee

    December 19, 2006

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