New "Furry Rights" petition circulating
If you have been in the Furry fandom for any legnth of time, you have most likely found someone who will ridicule you for being a member. Likewise, you may have found an individual who crusades against “fursecution” (persecution of Furries).
Recently, we were sent a link to the latest of a string of petitions aimed at stopping “fursecution” and giving Furries rights.
I hate to break it to some of you, but the Furry fandom is a subculture, much like “goth” is a subculture as well as “trekkies”. For a few within the fandom, “Furry” goes even deeper and becomes a fetish. It goes the same for other subcultures; for example, I know several people who have turned their fascination with vampires and vampirism into a fetish.
It comes down to this. We are part of a “fandom”. Fandom can be defined or explained as the state of being a fan or all that encompasses fan culture and fan behavior in general, or the study of fans and fan behavior. We are fans of animals, real or imaginary, given human characteristics. We have the same rights as any other fan group.
People calling to give Furries rights, for some reason, see us as being denied freedoms. In fact, that is not the case. In the United States, at least, there are no laws restricting any “furry” related activity – unless you consider laws in some states that restrict masks in public places. Those laws are not targeted at furries or fursuiters but at anyone wearing something covering their face in a public space. The laws are designed to cut down on criminal activitys such as robbery.
The target of this particular petition is the “Anti Furry Coalition“. AFC is one of dozens of websites across the internet that actively troll furry websites and message boards, and in rare cases, may even have members show up at furry conventions or gatherings.
I have to admit, at several large science fiction conventions in the past couple of years, I have seen a couple of AFC fliers and one door hanger, but no one was taking any of this seriously.
By posting plea after plea to sign a petition, or by flying off the handle whenever someone trolls your FA journal or a message you’ve posted on a board, you are giving them exactly what they want. You are “feeding the tolls” and acting like a “butthurt furry”. Further, there is growing agreement that internet petitions don’t work for any cause.
FNN recently dealt with a troll. The person was posting derogatory comments in all of the posts we had about SportyPup. For us, it was easy to deal with. We deleted the comments and then banned the individual, without letting anyone get into an argument or discussion over this users comments.
The fact of the matter is, there will always be someone who dislikes you for some reason or another. The best thing we can do is ignore these people. If we, as individuals, and as a fandom, stop reacting to groups like AFC, Anonymous, and Encyclopedia Dramatica users, in most cases, they will go find another group to troll.
The best advice I have is delete the petition. Be the bigger person and just walk away from these people. They are not worth your time or energy.
If, after reading this, you are still compelled to sign a petition, you can find the one I have referenced here: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/fb/1/rights-to-furries/
Edit: We were sent a link to another recent petition here: http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/stophatingfurries