Aretha Franklin hasn’t even been laid to rest yet, but that didn’t stop PETA from making a request for the estate to donate her fur coat collection. The animal rights group sent a letter to Franklin’s niece, Sabrina Garret Owens, compelling her to donate furs to its fur donation program.
The letter reads as follows:
We’re so sorry for the loss of your aunt. The world has lost an amazing talent, and we’re grateful that her music will live on.
Aretha will always be remembered for all that she did to help empower African-American people, especially women, in her lifetime. Might we now call on her estate to help end the cruel era of wearing animal fur by donating her fur coats to PETA, where they’ll go on to offer warmth and comfort to those who need it the most? In the past, we’ve given donated fur coats—some coming from other wonderful women including Anjelica Huston, Mariah Carey, and Mary Tyler Moore—to homeless shelters in the U.S. (including in Detroit) and to displaced refugees in Afghanistan, Mongolia, and Syria.
Designers, brands, and stores are dropping fur as quickly as consumers are ditching it. As faux fur and other cruelty-free, vegan materials take over, real animal fur can be put to good use, and this generous donation would secure Aretha forever as an “Angel” for animals.
Thank you for your time and consideration. Please let us know if there’s anything that we can do to help you and your family through this difficult time.
Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman, PETA”
Her fans were not here for it.
PETA is really worried about Aretha’s furs?!?! They can’t be that pressed! The Queen is barely sleep! Like go sit y’all rabbit eating azz down!!!! pic.twitter.com/GZ1pBiSuNZ
— Exclusively_Ashley (@BrownBombBella) August 27, 2018
First @peta wants Aretha’s estate to give up the furs, now they are coming for Baltimore’s beloved crabs? Peta needs some damn R.E.S.P.E.C.T! Tomorrow, I’m buying a mink AND a bushel! @JimmysSeafood #dumppeta
— RashedaLife (@rashedalife) August 27, 2018
I want PETA to keep Aretha's name out their mouth. How about that?
— chicken&waffles (@bembeblue) August 26, 2018
The letter is in stark contrast to a letter sent to miss Franklin back in 2008 written by PETA Vice President, Dan Mathews in which the tone was far less disrespectful.
Music lovers may think of you as a “queen,” but to animal lovers, you are a court jester. I’m sorry, Aretha, but your furs make you look like a clown. Why not shed the old-fashioned look that adds pounds to your frame and detracts from your beautiful voice? Won’t you donate your furs to the poor as “queen of compassion,” Mariah Carey, did? You’ll get a tax credit for the donation, and we at PETA will all sing your praises.
The estate has not come to a decision as yet, but perhaps Franklin already had plans for her possessions following her death. Either way, it is definitely far too soon to make such a request. The world is still grieving.
The funeral will be held Aug. 31 at 10 a.m. ET at Greater Grace Temple in Detroit. Public viewings will be held August 28 and 29 at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit.
Performers will include Stevie Wonder, Jennifer Hudson, Yolanda Adams and Jennifer Holliday. Faith Hill, Ronald Isley, Chaka Khan, Fantasia, Pastor Shirley Caesar, The Clark Sisters, Tasha Cobbs-Leonard, Bishop Marvin Sapp and The Williams Brothers will also be gracing the stage.