On the Fur Industry

Last night, while browsing the Overland website with my family, I came across this beautiful mink fur knitted poncho– with a hood! (I’d be in love if it didn’t cost more than my phone!) This morning, I was thinking about it, and then I remembered a National Geographic article I ready a few years ago about the ethics of mink farming.

Immediately I went on the lookout for any evidence I could find that the fur industry was ethical, so that I might still long for that poncho without feeling like a monster. I delved into article after article, and found a few that supported my case.

I don’t want to actually make an argument here, just talk about one I found. A lot of anti-fur organizations said that fur was unethical because we don’t need fur.

Well, fur makes warm clothing, which we do need.

The articles continued to say that there are other sources of clothing other than fur, so we don’t really need it.

When I read that part, I immediately wondered– is every single member of any anti-fur organization vegetarian? Because many people are, and they do fine. Which makes you wonder, if plenty of people live without eating meat, does that make the meat industry unethical? Clearly, you don’t need it to survive.

A lot of people might reply by saying ‘Yes, but we need food, and I like eating meat. That’s how the food chain goes, predator eating prey.’

To which I would respond, ‘Exactly. Since human civilization has existed, we have used fur as a resource for warmth, and as long as it is being harvested ethically and the animal is not wasted, it should be fine.’

Of course, this is a nuanced argument with far more than I have presented. But either way, I think it’s important to look at the issue beyond what we see on the surface.

Now, if you will excuse me, I’m off to dream about my mink poncho, guilt-free.

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