On Saturday, January 29, 2011 over 250 animal rights activists and concerned citizens, young and old stood side by side in the Matthew Shephard Memorial Triangle Park on the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Crescent Heights in West Hollywood, California to rally for a fur-free West Hollywood.
With this ground-breaking action, the City of West Hollywood could become the first completely fur free city in the United States, leading as an example for the rest of the world to follow. The progressive city of “WeHo” was the first town to pass an anti-declaw bill and all out ban on live pet sales in the nation. With WeHo referring to human companions of animals as “guardians” instead of the past term, “owners,” it’s no wonder that they would make this unprecedented move to have an entirely fur free environment. Award winning director and animal rights attorney Shannon Keith said “in 1989 West Hollywood signed a resolution to make an animal cruelty-free zone, and it can’t be an animal cruelty-free zone unless they stop the selling of fur.”
To help make this happen, John D’Amico has stepped up to the plate, supporting the fur free message in his campaign for West Hollywood City Council. He is going to focus on this legislation while in office and be a continual advocate for a fur free world. He said that “West Hollywood has the opportunity to once again be a leader for animal welfare by becoming the first fur-free city in the nation.” D’Amico continued, “We have pledged to be a place that is free of cruelty to animals and we can no longer support the barbaric fur trade by selling the products of that cruelty in our city.”
Ed Buck, one of the organizers of “Fur Free WeHo,” said “This campaign is not just about banning fur but promoting West Hollywood as the capital of fur-free fashion, especially in its boutique district that includes a Stella McCartney store, which already shuns furs.” Buck was instrumental in helping get the ordinance passed which bans the sale of puppy mill animals in pet stores.
The initiative would make West Hollywood the first fur-free community in the United States and possibly the world. Hit Recording Artist Fawn commented “West Hollywood has always been a city ahead of it’s time, and the time is NOW to stop killing helpless and loving animals for their fur. The vanity of the fashion industry is utter insanity. People who wear real fur and even some faux furs have blood on their hands.”
Fawn walked through the crowd and streets, turning heads and hearts with a stark reminder written on a double-sided sign, adorned over her stunning rescued white wolf dog Coda, which read “15 of me = 1 fur coat” and “My father died for your fur coat.” When resident Deanne Sire saw the sign, she said “I guess I never thought of my fur having been a living being and having had a dad.”
Actor Bill McNamara stated “Fur is definitely something we need to abolish, there is no reason that anybody today, in America needs to wear fur. It symbolized meanness of spirit. There is no other reason to wear it.”
New York Times Best Selling Author, Rory Freedman agreed with McNamera, sporting a shirt which read “Mean People Wear Fur.” Freedman explained, “Amongst other horrors, animals killed for their fur are subject to neck-breaking, strangulation, drowning, and anal or vaginal electrocution. Some are even skinned alive. All this so people with low self esteem can wear this shit and someone can make a few bucks selling it? Totally unacceptable and completely unnecessary.” She added, “I am thrilled that John D’Amico is making this issue his running platform and that West Hollywood can set a precedent for other cities to follow. Real change is not only possible, it’s imminent.”
Lords Of Acid vocalist Lacey Conner declared “The fur industry will never make itself humane and the only way to stop the fur industry is to make it go out of business.” She continue, “Don’t buy fur, if no one bought fur, the fur industry would go out of business and this mistreatment would not happen. I’m just asking people to please take a few minutes to to find out what is really going on.”
Film Producer Shannon Keith pointed out, “We have an election coming up on March 8th and it’s a great time to vote for the candidate that has a platform against fur. Once we get those candidates in place in city council, we will be able to move forward with this.”
“This is not about punishment or shame, it’s about really thinking creatively about how we live in the world and taking action and stopping the barbaric actions of harvesting fur, and really looking at who we are as individuals and as a people and West Hollywood is a great place for this to start.” Concluded Candidate John D’Amico.
To find out more go to www.ourWEHO.com, www.arme.tv and www.uncagedfilms.com
Photos courtesy & (C) 2011 by Brenda Calvillo, Ciddy Fonteboa, Gary Smith, Gene Blalock, Vicki Melton, Mary Cummins and FFD Images.
Editor’s Note: JR, Special Writer/Correspondent contributed to this story. Also story first published on January 30, 2011 on Examiner.com at http://www.examiner.com/events-in-los-angeles/over-250-animals-right-activists-take-action-to-make-weho-fur-free-city-usa
Writer’s Corner: How do you feel about FUR. Do you like animals to be killed in pain? Many farms are killing the animals alive in a brutal way. They take away their skin to make clothes for us and make a profit? How do you feel about it? Please leave your comments.