Bear skin and the catwalk
September 18, 2006
The Guardian reports that fur, in the fashion world, is apparently the new fur. In spite of the best efforts of Peta (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), fur is apparently coming back. Even though Tony Blair banned fur farming in Britain in 2003, last year the British Fur Trade Association (BFTA) reported that the sales of fur garments and accessories were up 30% . Also last year his wife was photographed in a £1,300 rabbit-fur coat. Whilst I agree that dead rabbits are slightly more attractive than Mrs Blair, I still think their sacrifice was too much to ask. She’s lucky she was not given the same treatment as some other fur-wearers who were ‘pelted (sic) by protesters with weapons ranging from a dead raccoon to a tofu pie’. You can say this for tofu, it may be totally bland to eat but it makes a pretty decent projectile. It was good to see Burberry making a strong moral stand on the issue. “we will not use fur if there is a serious concern that the fur has been produced by the unacceptable treatment of the animals concerned.” Either Burberry have found a way of removing the fur without hurting the animal or they just hang around waiting for the animals to die a natural death.
For me, fur is an abomination and any fur-clad supermodel who dares make a pass at me will be told in no uncertain terms to remove the garment first. One thing you don’t see too often, fortunately, is a woman with a dead fox draped around her neck, something that was the height of fashion early last century. Also, I’m strongly opposed to regiments like the Grenadier Guards and would refuse to join any whose soldiers put a bear on their heads. According to the Evening Standard, “The British Army has spent £321,000 in the last five years on 431 bearskins at the cost of the tax payer (that’s £745 a bear!). The MoD has been researching the use of fake fur for bearskin hats for nearly 20 years but has not as yet found one it considers suitable. The standard bearskin of the British Foot Guards is 18 inches tall, weighs one and a half pounds and is made from the fur of the Canadian black bear.” Twenty years these jokers have been trying unsuccessfully to buy fake fur? Not surprising they haven’t managed to find a replacement for the ageing Nimrods! Chuck a few dead racoons at them , I say, that’ll teach ’em. I guess the MOD mandarins have been reading the British Fur Trade Association website which says “‘There is no real comparison between the two – real fur cannot be matched for its beauty, softness and glamour”. We wouldn’t want our troops to be unglamourous or forced to wear rough, unbeautiful hats, would we? What I really want to know is how sticking a bear on your head is supposed to help in the War on Terror? Are potential suicide bombers going to mend their ways suddenly when they are confonted by bearskins. ‘Oh man, he’s got a bear on his head, maybe Islam is a religion of moderation after all’. Surely that third of a million pounds could have been spent more wisely on equipping our troops in Afghanistan with more modern weapons, like dead racoons or tofu pies?