At this point in my life, I can no longer ethically justify wearing my Canada Goose jacket—unless, of course, it gets so freezing that it would be unreasonable not to. In the past few years, my ethical standards have evolved to a point at which I can no longer comfortably wear my thousand-dollar parka. In fact, I would feel more comfortable wearing absolutely no coat at all, assuming the temperature stays above freezing and there’s very little wind.
It’s no secret that Canada Goose jackets are products of cruelty. In addition to filling them with down from abused birds, the Canadian outwear brand uses fur from coyotes caught in steel traps who are then shot or bludgeoned to death. It is absolutely shameful for any person to knowingly wear the items of a company with such barbaric practices, with the exception of if there’s some type of giant blizzard and it gets really chilly outside for a few days. But if it’s a pleasant winter day in say, the mid-40s or something, there’s absolutely no excuse to wear a garment forged in the fires of such suffering and ignominy.
For the price of this jacket, I could have purchased a whole family’s every meal for an entire month. I could have paid rent for the homeless couple living on my block. I could even have bought jackets for ten people who can’t afford them. These facts have caused me to re-evaluate my priorities in life, leading me to the conclusion that my behavior has been unacceptable if the weather is warm but totally understandable on a brisk winter morning.
I feel as if it is important for me to explain that my Canada Goose jacket was purchased for me as a gift. If it were up to me, I would never have chosen a product that represents such immorality and greed. But finally, after four years of wearing the wretched thing, it’s time to hang it up on the coat rack—only to be taken down when my North Face just isn’t gonna cut it.
To reiterate, I will no longer be sporting the blood of innocent geese and coyotes, unless there’s a storm that causes said blood to become highly necessary. Think of the poor geese! Innocent fowl who would be heartbroken to learn that the purpose of their slaughter is the transient comfort of humans, though they would probably understand if it were one of those miserable days in mid-January when Spring just feels like a million months away.
From this day forward, I can no longer wear the red, white, and blue patch in good conscience. In addition to the ethics of this piece of winter gear, I am fatigued of people assuming my socio-economic status based on the brand of my clothing. One caveat to this sentiment would be in the event of an extremely windy day in the middle of the winter—in that scenario, I would happily identify myself as a member of the upper echelon of society able to afford such apparel, as long as it means I’m warm.
There are plenty of sustainable and cruelty-free brands out there, all of which I will be proudly supporting during the late fall and early spring. But even in the depths of winter, I swear to hold out for as long as I possibly can before I start shivering and am therefore forced to take out the ol’ Goose. Instead of a cozy piece of winter wear, I now see my parka for what it really is: a carcass. For me, submitting to its warm embrace would be the same exact thing as skinning a Labrador and wearing its flesh, an action that I would absolutely never even think of doing unless there were some serious wind chill.
While I know putting away my formerly beloved jacket will not put an end to Canada Goose’s abhorrent practices, at least I’m doing something. It’s true that I could also stop wearing my Canada Goose hat and gloves, but I haven’t yet found a pair that keeps me quite as toasty. That being said, you can count on me not to wear any unethical winter gear during my two-week trip to Miami in the middle of February.