December 8, 2010
Final Researched Argument Draft
The Fears of Fur
Each year the fur industry kills over 50 million animals for fashion. This astounding statement does not even include rabbits, which are among the highest to be killed each year. This is killing more than the population of South Africa alone. To many citizens of the world, fur is a winter staple fashion item, but for others it is a cruel way of torturing an animal for their selfish wants. Fur is a fantastic way to keep warm in the winter, especially if one lives in a cold area. There are many different selections to choose from such as; beaver, chinchilla, fox, mink, seal etc. However, there are many activist groups such as PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which feel the complete opposite. Many of these people think that it is a form of murder and a completely disgusting way to wear fashion. There are many advertising campaigns that display the hatred towards this trend. It is crucial both to the environment and society to use faux fur in both fashion and within lifestyles. The education of fur can be done by learning about endangered species, the fur industry and animal cruelty.
Before the reasons behind why we should switch to faux fur and boycott real fur is revealed there is a brief background that needs to be stated. Fur was one of the earliest materials that were used to make clothes. By wearing fur it showed that one was wealthy and had a high stature in society. During the 1800’s France became friendly with Russia. The Tsar of Russia came to Paris to visit his friends and while he was there the people of France took great interest in his stylish furs. Soon after, all of Europe became obsessed with fur and many of these coats were made out of Russian sable. The seal coat was the first coat to ever display its fur on the outside of the jacket. This trend started spreading to the Western countries and becoming more popular. Many animals could be sewn together in order to make a wrap or shawl for a woman. In the late 1800s Madame Isidore Paquin started designing lines of fur that were even more comfortable than before. This statement is how fur became to be what it is today. However, many would never guess what it would do to our animals. There are over 5,000 different animals that are endangered on our planet. One of the most deadly reasons we hunt for animals is for their fur. More than one in three species assessed by the World Conservation Union is threatening extinction to many different animals. Overhunting and fishing since the early days of Europeans and Americans have threatened animal species. In the United States the grizzly bear, timber wolf and bald eagle have been continuously overhunted and have gone into extinction. Supporters of the fur trade and industry much often claim that killing animals is a way to conserve and manage the wildlife. “This is untrue. Many species of wild cats such as ocelots, margays, lynx and Geoffrey’s cat are being driven to the verge of extinction by hunting and trapping. There are only 4,000-7000 snow leopards left in the world. Sea otters were driven to the very edge of extinction and, despite protection their numbers remain very low” (animalaid.org).
The fur trade has gone on for years now and there is no chance in this trade stopping or animals being saved. An example of this is the Northern Fur Seal. Northern fur seals have had a dramatic population decline in recent years. “70% of the world’s 1.2 million northern fur seals breed and pup only on the Pribilof Islands. Due to dramatic declines in recent decades, northern fur seals are listed as depleted under the Marine Mammal Protection Act” (Schafer). Due to this astounding fact and many other cases similar to this one the fashion industry has continued to change its ways from real fur to faux fur.
The fashion industry has started to become more pro faux fur and less about the usage of...