Naomi Campbell has been up to her old fur-wearing tricks again, with photos just revealed from a photo shoot for Dennis Basso. In the photos, she poses in Basso’s Russian sable coats, which can cost up to $200,000.
Any celebrity wearing real fur will be pounced upon, but Campbell is the most hated of them all for her outrageous hypocrisy: in 1994 she took part in a major PETA anti-fur campaign yet in the last few years has been wearing and promoting real fur clothing.
Cramped cages and violent animal abuse within the fur trade I could well imagine, but I hadn’t conceived the full horror of the conditions on some farms until I watched this video on the Peta website. The footage was taken inside a Chinese fur farm and is one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever seen. Please do watch it, but not just before bedtime:
I would never entertain the idea of buying real fur for myself. But I do have friends who have vintage furs – passed down through the generations, or second-hand furs snapped up from a market stall in Portobello Market.
But does the fact that these animals were already dead – killed maybe 50 or 60 years ago – make them ethically sound? Many in the fashion world think so. Some have even suggested that recycling and reusing of fur is the best possible use for it, as it reduces the need for chemical-intensive artificial fur to be created.
If even vintage fur was banned, the question would be what to do with it. Burn it all in a carbon-spewing pyre like they did with ivory in Kenya in the late 1980s, when 12 million tonnes were burnt to make a statement on the threat posed by poaching?
As a meat-eater, I can hardly get on my soap box to protest against the use of animal products. Cows, pigs and chickens die all the time because I want to eat them. But there are organically-reared cattle who have a good standard of life and are killed in a very humane way.
Is the same possible within the fur trade? Would a coat made from the fur of organically-raised, free-roaming, humanely-killed seals and foxes be no crueller to animals than me enjoying a nice piece of steak?
There are certainly many companies, like Vulpecula, which say this is possible. Vulpecula kills wild possoms which are currently being culled by the New Zealand government because their numbers are too high, and are destroying habitats. Is it better to throw away the carcass, or to make best use of the resource but thus perpetuate the availability of real fur?
It’s something I’m still struggling with.
But one thing’s for sure, we could do without influential celebrities saying she just ‘loves fur’.
If that video made you feel as sick as it did me, take Peta’s Pledge to Go Fur Free here and get your mates to sign up too.