During a recent stop on her comedy tour, comedian Tiffany Haddish took to Instagram to upload a video of herself accepting a sleeveless racoon-fur jacket as a gift from one of her generous fans.
In giving a shout-out and a thank-you to the unknown fashion donor, Haddish made a few bold statements aimed at animal-rights organization PETA.
“I’m about to start protesting. I’m going to wear fur every day until they stop killing Black people. When the police stop killing Black people, I’ll stop wearing fur; it’s my new protest,” she said in the video.
Promising to wear her newly gifted jacket ‘as much as possible,’ Haddish continued her commentary: “Sorry, PETA. Don’t be mad at me, be mad at the police; because people are important and so are the animals.”
Although Haddish’s delivery of comments may have appeared lighthearted, she actually touched on a very heavy and sensitive subject that remains prevalent in America—the mass homicides of Black people due to police violence.
ESSENCE has covered the tragic cases of Trayvon Martin, Freddie Gray, Sandra Bland and countless others who have lost their lives senselessly at the hands of law enforcement, but when celebrities such as Haddish become vocal about these topics it proves that these incidents are much more than just daily news reports. They are deeply pressing issues that need to be addressed by all facets of society—hence Haddish’s bold assertion toward PETA.
Based on the company’s mission statement found on its website, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) “focuses its attention on the four areas in which the largest numbers of animals suffer the most intensely for the longest periods of time: in laboratories, in the food industry, in the clothing trade, and in the entertainment industry.”
With fur continuing to be a controversial debate in fashion, many celebrities and public figures are often targeted by animal-rights organizations and have either had their fur items defaced or publicly mocked and scrutinized. Therefore, in calling out PETA not to protest her new fur jacket, Haddish unwittingly raises the following question to her 4.4 million followers: Do Black lives matter less than animal lives?