By now, I know you know who we are. We have held protests outside your stores in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and Boston. We have asked people to take pictures holding signs that say, “I Will Not Shop At INTERMIX Until They Go Fur Free” and send those photos to you. We have encouraged people to comment on your facebook posts (until you block them, as you have done to us). We have instructed people to tweet at you, begging you to extend your passion for fashion to include a passion for compassion. We have searched for your fans on Instagram and Twitter to make sure they are not left in the dark about this issue. We have educated your employees, your shoppers and your local communities about the horrors perpetuated by the fur industry by means of undercover videos and informational leaflets.
That said, I’m not sure you know why we’ve done these things. If you did- if you truly understood the conditions that millions of animals are living in at this very moment solely for the sake of greed and vanity- I feel confident that you would stop. If you knew that by supporting the fur industry in China (as evidenced by the “made in China” tag I recently photographed on one of your rabbit fur jackets), you are condemning dogs and cats- not unlike the ones you probably cuddle with on your couch- to miserable lives and painful deaths, you would stop. If you watched the undercover fur farm video narrated by Stella McCartney (a designer you clearly hold in high regard as you sell her items in your stores) and saw foxes wait in line to be anally electrocuted for their skins, you would stop. If you had to sit and watch a coyote languish in pain for days as she gnaws helplessly at her trapped paw, until the moment of sweet release when a trapper finally arrives to end her life, only so that her body can become 1/20 of a fur coat, you would stop. If you put down your defenses and spent just twenty minutes researching the realities of the fur industry, you would stop.
Or at least, I hope you would. Despite spending much of my life shaking my head at the shocking evils humankind is capable of, I have to cling to my belief that people are inherently good. In order to hope for any change, for any enlightenment of our species, for any betterment of our current world, I have to believe that within each person is the capacity for love, compassion, and selflessness. I am positive that you possess these qualities, and that is why I am pouring my heart and soul into this campaign. We know you won’t pull furs from your stores this season. Those animals have already lost their lives, and there is no changing that. You can, however, pledge to stop selling fur before the Fall/Winter 2012 season. You can choose to join designers like Ralph Lauren, Kenneth Cole, Kate Spade, Betsey Johnson, Calvin Klein, Ed Hardy, and Stella McCartney and stores like Free People, Urban Outfitters, Planet Blue, LF Stores, and Anthropologie, all of whom have pledged not to sell fur. You can be on the forefront of eco-fashion and become a symbol of progress by promising not to support, endorse, and encourage the slaughter of foxes, coyotes, lynx, otters, seals, dogs, cats, rabbits, mink, chinchilla and raccoons. You can be part of the change.
Every morning I wake up hoping to find my inbox containing an email from your team promising to go fur free. Until that day comes, we will be scheduling more protests, reaching out to more activists, contacting more of your fans, taking more photos of our boycott signs, writing new blog posts about this movement, and relentlessly working on this campaign until every reachable human being is aware of the horrific, barbaric, and heartbreaking truths of the fur industry supported by INTERMIX. I truly look forward to the day when I can walk into your store and buy a dress with the peaceful knowledge that my money does not directly support cruelty. I hope that day is soon.
Jessica Schlueter (on behalf of Fur Free LA)