I recently came back from a week in London and was reminded about how much I love the culture, city, and the Brits. But I was also reminded about a few things that annoy me. London is a very trend-conscious city. It only takes a few days on the street, public transport, and walking by a few shop windows to know what is in fashion, because almost everyone follows trends. One trend I noticed all over London was fur – mostly cheap, ugly, tacky, fake fur. The British are total hypocrites when it comes to fur, here’s why.
1. They wear tons of fake fur. There are very, very little topics that PETA and I will agree on, however one thing they do say is that the wearing of fake fur promotes both fake and real fur fashion trends, and therefore should not be done. I will agree with this, because most people do not have the eye to spot a real from a fake, and if they see fur (real or fake) all over the shops and streets, they will probably buy it. Britain – if you don’t like fur, then don’t wear it and for god’s sake stop wearing that cheap, tacky ugly fake fur made from petroleum products that are infinitely worse for the environment than a mink coat.
2. They buy tons of cheap fashion. I mentioned above that London is a very trendy city, and the reason why it can be so is that fast fashion is everywhere and is very, very cheap. The hypocrisy is staggering. Here’s a nation of so-called animal lovers who get in a tizzy the moment they hear the word “fur”, but will buy bags of cheap clothing made in countries with little or no workers’ rights, and will wear said clothing twice and then dump it into a landfill. In the long run, this is doing far more damage to the environment and its inhabitants than the fur industry. Get your priorities straight.
3. They claim to love animals but don’t take care of the people. While we are on the subject, why is it that the British seem to be the first on the “animal rights” bandwagon, yet each local high street is lined with charity shops to raise money for the old? What does it say about a country that cares more about dogs than they do pensioners? In my ten years in England, I was constantly shocked about the number of charities that support old people – which implied that their families were not taking care of them. It is really sad. And today I read this in The Guardian: “Nearly half-a-million Britons are reported to have been driven to food banks in the first half of this year, and yet this is one of the most prosperous nations that has ever existed.” A nation of animal-lovers, indeed, who don’t really seem to put much effort into caring for the needy humans that populate it.
4. The media lies about fur. I hate to cite the Daily Mail as an example of media because it should more likely be referred to as paper one can use to start a fire or to let a puppy pee on, but they are also a prime example of a newspaper whose stance against fur is full of hypocrisy. They frequently post sensationalist anti-fur articles, but in their tacky celebrity coverage, they refer to fur as fake fur. These photos of Jerry Hall in a “faux-fur trimmed coat” are a joke. That is not faux fur – Jerry Hall has a bit more class (and money) than that. Her coat is lined in real fur.
5. The retailers lie about fur. Harrods is the only one of the British department stores whose has a pro-fur policy – the rest state they do not sell fur. But guess what? The people who are actually spending tons of money in those stores actually want to buy fur. And guess what? Most of the high end designer brands sold in the department stores also feature fur in their collections. While none of the “anti-fur” department stores have fur departments, they’ve been known to sell a handbag here, an accessory there – that contains a real fur trim. And what happens if you ask them what it is made of? The sales people will lie and say it is fake.
I’m all for being a nation of animal-lovers, but quit the hypocrisy and consider the big picture. We all need to wear clothes, and by choosing fake fur or cheap fast fashion you aren’t necessarily buying smarter or more ethical than buying fur. And if the Brits spent one tenth of the resources spend on “protecting” animals on protecting the old and the poor, I’m sure it would be a much better place to live.