Choice is fashionable. Imposing an ideology on businesses, designers, and consumers? Not so much. Especially when there could be an environmental cost.
Yet dictating fashion and other lifestyle choices is exactly what PETA and other animal radicals are hoping to bring into style. Just before New York Fashion Week, PETA announced that it is tamping down its long-running campaign to ban fur. Don’t breathe a sigh of relief for your freedom to express yourself. PETA is increasing its attacks on wool and leather.
Why Do They Want to Ban Wool and Leather?
Animal radicals want to ban everyone from the choice of using animal products. The activists are not “anti-wool” or “anti-fur,” they are anti-animal product.
So it’s not just wool and leather that PETA wants to ban. PETA wants to eliminate any use of animals, including meat, dairy, and eggs; the ability of scientists to use rats to help find cures for cancer and AIDS; and even have pets.
Shocked? Consider PETA’s own words.
“[W]e believe that it would have been in the animals’ best interests if the institution of ‘pet keeping’…never existed,” says PETA on its website. Or as PETA president and founder Ingrid Newkirk has put it, “Pet ownership is an absolutely abysmal situation brought about by human manipulation.”
PETA’s agenda is overarching and extreme, and would inflict harm on human society and the human-animal bond.
Who Are These Animal Radicals?
The leading group is PETA, which has a long and ignominious history of supporting extremism. PETA gave $70,000 to the defense of an arsonist who burned down a university lab. It also gave money to the Earth Liberation Front, considered a domestic terrorist group by the FBI responsible for many crimes.
Another is Direct Action Everywhere (DxE). This group has made a name for itself by breaking into farms and stealing animals in the name of total animal liberation. Several of its leaders are facing serious criminal charges. DxE advocates for a future in which no one is allowed the freedom to enjoy wool, leather, cashmere, and other products.
A third is the so-called Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), which runs ads full of dogs and cats but is not affiliated with the many humane societies that run animal shelters. HSUS is run by a former PETA lawyer and has the same agenda. And, like PETA, it doesn’t have a history of treating women well, either.
Synthetic Materials: What Cost to the Environment?
The extremist push against natural materials is set to have a serious environmental cost.
Natural materials like wool are biodegradable and a renewable resource. Synthetic materials, in contrast, are typically made from plastics. While plastic has been a great invention for modern society, it also can contribute to pollution of land and water if used frivolously and carelessly.
Think of fast fashion. Fake fur coat that’s discarded will sit in a landfill for centuries. Synthetic materials don’t biodegrade.
They also can pollute waterways. According ot scientific research, washing synthetic garments can cause them to “shed” plastic microfibers that then enter the water supply. These particles can be so small that they evade water treatment plants. And guess what? A leading source of ocean pollution is plastic microparticles.
A majority of Americans say they’re concerned about ocean pollution–most of which is microplastic. Making the problem worse isn’t in vogue.