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 with Rob Miskosky

Pandering to the Animal-Rights Movement

“In (the company’s) announcement, they claim: ‘This is a significant step forward toward building a more humane and sustainable world.’ I cannot disagree with this more. It is messaging like this that harms the Indigenous harvesting industry. Hunting and trapping provides our community with the materials to keep us warm, and provides us with healthy and nutritious foods that are not always accessible in our stores.

Cathy Towtongie
“When a large corporation has a large platform and their marketing takes advantage of Inuit and the North, I believe they have a responsibility to promote and help protect the Indigenous ways of life. I believe they have the responsibility to teach their consumers the importance of harvesting for Inuit and why we will continue to use furs.

“We know how this will impact our local economy. Until recently, Canada Goose supported the sustainable and culturally appropriate use of fur. I ask that Canada Goose consider how their announcement and I especially believe our minister of Environment should say that messaging will affect the Indigenous harvesting industry.”

– Rankin Inlet North-Chesterfield Inlet MLA Cathy Towtongie

“The decision by Canada Goose to move away from natural fur in their products, as well as the general industry trend towards using faux “fur” is extremely disappointing. Canada Goose claims that this change is being made to become more sustainable, but that’s simply not true. Hunting and trapping are highly regulated in Canada to ensure sustainability and wild-sourced fur is a highly renewable resource, which does not have the negative environmental impacts that plastic based faux fur does. This decision by Canada Goose is symptomatic of a larger issue and appears to be about little more than pandering to a very small faction of society that simply doesn’t like hunting or trapping, or perhaps, more accurately, doesn’t understand the benefits of it.”
– Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, Resource Management Specialist Lauren Tonelli

I wrote in this space quite some time ago about the capitulation of Canada Goose, the one company we thought had some balls and would perhaps stand up to the animal-rights movement... but alas, they are as weak kneed as a milksop in a western movie, pandering to groups like PETA.
Canada Goose announced it would remove natural fur from its products by 2022, claiming, “This is a significant step forward toward building a more humane and sustainable world.” Blech!

I can’t think of anything more sustainable than coyote fur, an animal whose population has exploded across North America and which carries diseases and parasites that can seriously affect humans, such as Echinococcus multilocularis—a tapeworm that can cause death to a human if undetected. Coyotes need to be managed through hunting and trapping, there can be no argument to this.

As an example of a burgeoning coyote population, look no further than Stanley Park on BC’s lower mainland where, since December of 2020, there have been more than 45 incidents of coyote attacks on humans. Coyotes are a relatively new species to Stanley Park, having first come to Vancouver in the 1980s but are now fully engrained on that landscape.

At the beginning of September, the BC Ministry of Forests announced a coyote cull in the park to regain control of the situation; of course, much to the fury of the animal-rights groups.

“We don’t have a coyote problem, we have a governance problem,” said Lesley Fox, the executive director of the animal-rights group The Fur-Bearers, a group that blocked little old me from following their nonsensical ramblings on Twitter. I guess they didn’t like me pointing out their bullshit! 

Ironically, an Insights West survey found that 71 percent of Vancouver residents were in favour of the cull. Take note Canada Goose, that’s 71 percent that agree to a cull of animals that will be destroyed and most likely incinerated, as opposed to being used for their fur. Imagine if that fur were to be used, I bet that 71 percent number would be quite a bit higher. Canada Goose is not taking a “significant step forward toward building a more humane and sustainable world.” Rather, they are moving towards using environmentally unfriendly faux fur to appease animal-rights groups that hold animals in a higher place than they do humans. Think about that the next time you’re looking to buy a winter coat. ■

For previous Outdoor Pursuits click here.

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