Burned Furs

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Fan Campaign
Name: Burned Furs
Type of Campaign: movement
Aims: to "improve" the furry fandom, to distance themselves from "perverted" furries and "Lifestylers"
Participants:
Date Started: 1998-2001, 2005-
Fandom: Furry
Campaign Website:
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The Burned Furs were a group of furries against other types of furries and furry art. The movement's exact goals differed from individual to individual, but complaints against "perverts" and other "weird" furries were common. This included zoophilia, plushophilia (the attraction to stuffed animals), and murrsuiting (using fursuits for sex). They felt that removing certain types of fans or artwork would improve the fandom's reputation and artistic value. Burned Fur offered itself as an "alternative" to the broad furry community, and allowed furries to distance themselves from sexual furries by using the Burned Fur label. They have bee accused of expressing threats or violent desires against furries they opposed (see Threats of Violence)

Urban Dictionary includes a definition of a Burned Fur from 2004, quoted below.

A member or ex-member of the furry fandom who has been burned in some severe way. Usually this is a result of some event or other portion of the fandom that has offended them enough that they feel their viewpoint of what the fandom should be is correct. They are passionate in their views and usually attempt to speak out strongly against whatever they feel is against their moral statutes. They see the furry fandom has acquired an ugly front and seek to remedy this and make the fandom more "family friendly" by removing all the "bizarre" or possibly illegal portions of the fandom from the public eye, or altogether entirely.
Urban Dictionary.[1]

Today, references to the Burned Furs are common in furry circles when discourse happens.

History

Burned Fur was created in response to the negative attention furries had begun to attract, especially during the earlier days. This included "negative press coverage," with "articles in which furry convention attendees discussed these and other sexual practices with reporters." Furries had also attracted the insult "skunk-fucker," and many outside the fandom believes that they were zoophiles. This is still an issue in 2020.[2]

The original Burned Fur movement was started in 1998 by Squee Rat and Eric Blumrich, among others, and ran till 2001. However, the Burned fur wiki only lists Squee Rat as the creator.[3] It sprang up again in 2005 under the same name, though was considered a separate group from the first as it had new members. This second wave was run by Tom Zarycki, alias "The Reverend" Ash Maurice Cairo. Then, it changed its name to the Improved Anthropomorphics. According to WikiFur much of Burned Fur's mission statements and beliefs were already well known before its creation as a group.[2] Though Squee Rat was credited with starting the movement, they did not have any formal leadership.[4]

Beliefs

The Burned Fur manifesto lists the following as being against their beliefs: zoophilia, plushophilia, fursuit sex, things seen as "wrong" by non-fandom individuals, lycanthropy, shamanism, and veganism. Reportedly, some individual members (including the a founder called Hangdog) were also against homosexuality, Christianity, obscure fetishes, and erotic artwork. However, in the manifesto Squee Rat claims that these things are okay when practiced in private.

Burned Fur has its own wiki, which is mainly comprised of outdated entries mainly from 2006. It's front page declares that they are "Furry Fans Standing Up for a Better Fandom." [3] The wiki says that they stand for "common sense" in the fandom, which appears to be a specific set of rules in the movement. However, the pages on "common sense" have been removed from the wiki, though in the FAQ "common sense" is said to have been a document.[5]

Criticism and Controversies

Burned Fur, being so vocal (and arguably aggressive in their beliefs), had decent opposition. Freezing Furs was created by Jurann Foxtail in 1999 in response, and labeled Burned Fur as a hate group. Their own manifesto went directly against Burned Fur's: "To put a stop to the Burned Fur line of thinking by starting a large support group. To open a "real avenue of healing and image improvement" for the furry fandom." They believed the Burned Furs wanted to "put a bullet" in the heads of those they disapproved of.[6] Other groups were also formed in opposition to the group, such as Nonaligned Furs and Furry Peace. Burned Fur members also boycotted ConFurence, which likely did not help gain favor with anyone. Later, a member of Burned Fur named Darrel Exline, took over ConFurence in 1999, and this resulted in a decline in attendance members. ConFurence closed on April 27, 2003.

Criticism can be made concerning the way in which Burned Fur lumped practices together. For example, lumping zoophilia with a stuffed animal fetish, vegans with sexual acts, and calling those with alternate religious beliefs "crackpots."

Burned Fur may have been accused of causing flamewars on alt.fan.furry, based on one of the "historical" pages archived on their wiki. At the top of the page it says: "Two accusations - both of them untrue - have been made against Burned Fur: 1) "The Burned Furs are causing bad publicity for furry fandom by talking so much about its problems! 2) "The Burned Furs are causing the flamewars in alt.fan.furry!"[7]

Threats of Violence

The host for the main homepage of Burned Fur, Clint Forrester, threatened Xydexx (the "inflatable unicorn")[8] in an 1998 flamewar that he would "put his fucking head through a wall" if he ever met him at a convention. Another member named GothTiger also stated he would "like nothing better in the world than to watch mister too-many-consonants get what's coming to him." Hangdog later tried to dispute the claims that Xydexx was threatened by posting the full conversation on alt.fan.furry.[9] In the conversation, Hangdog said that violence would make a bad name for Burned Fur and make Xydexx a martyr, then Forrester apologized to Hangdog for making Burned Fur look bad, and said he didn't intend to actually cause physical harm to anyone. Xydexx called for Burned Fur to increase the moderation of its members. Dr. Cat (the creator of Furcadia) said "You know, if everyone in the newsgroup would ignore BOTH sides of this argument, the Burned Fur detractors AND the rude Burned Furs, it would get a lot more peaceful around here for a while."

Hangdog said of Eric Blumrich (one of the founders whose beliefs helped the movement): "The next time I see you I will kill you with my bare hands."[10]

According to "Furry History | The Burned Furs", they were also accused of attempting to sabotage conventions, though outside of boycotting them they did not do anything substantial.[4]

Outside of these threats, there have been no confirmed cases of Burned Fur members engaging in violence.

Quotes and Comments

Anthropomorphics fandom is being overrun by sexually dysfunctional, socially stunted and creatively bankrupt hacks and pervs.

AND BEING THAT: 1) Over the past few years, anthropomorphic fandom has come to have numerous 'alternative lifestyle' groups associated with it, many of whom have little interest in the appreciation, promotion and production of anthropomorphic art, stories, costumes, etc.

2) These groups engage in behavior and activities that would be considered by non-members of anthropomorphic fandom (and indeed, many members of anthropomorphic fandom) as socially embarrasing, having dubious moral and legal status.

3) The presence of these groups has caused a number of anthropomorphic artists to produce material to cater to their tastes, giving the entire genre an unfortunate reputation as yet another form of pornography.

4) Any call to these groups to alter their behavior to something more socially acceptable in a public forum have been repeatedly shouted down, being buried under such labels as 'elitist', 'fascist' and 'hatemonger'.

5) Anthropomorphics enthusiasts that do not fit under those categories are becoming increasingly disenfranchised and are singled out as pariahs when they point out the fandom's problems.

...

IT IS PROPOSED THAT:

1) WE SHALL institute ourselves as a monkey wrench in the gears of mainstream fandom not to destroy it but to improve it. If all else fails, and improving the fandom seems impossible or a waste of time, then we shall institute ourselves as an alternative to mainstream fandom. Names for a movement such as this are currently under debate.

2) WE STRONGLY DISCOURAGE the support of acts such as bestiality, plushophilia, fursuit sex and other things seen as "wrong" by non-fandom individuals (known by fans as "mundanes"). It will be easier for non-fans to sympathize and identify with anthro art if these elements are, if not eliminated, then pushed to the far outer fringes and rendered irrelevant to the fandom at large.
excerpt from the Burned Fur Mission Statement[11]
I remember when being a pervert was a bad thing.

If you were warped, you tried to hide it, and good for you if you did. If you were going to polish your rod to autopsy photos or bugger a Shetland pony, you did it in the privacy of your own sick, sad home. No one else, especially not me, had to know, and that was great. The best part was, if you decided to crawl out on the roof and inform the neighborhood via midnight megaphone that being urinated on got you hot, you would be told, in no uncertain terms, how very diseased you were. Most people I know don't have too much trouble distinguishing between a "lifestyle choice" and a "warning sign." Yep, in many parts of the world, the idea of making love to Andy Panda is still regarded as somewhat misguided. Most parts, that is, except "Furry Fandom."

I don't know what the hell happened here.

"Live and Let Live" is an excellent, tree-hugging philosophy, but it doesn't do much when the ones you refuse to kill are dragging you down with them. If you like animal-based stories, cartoons, or art, you're a furry. And like it or not, "Furry" means "Pervert."

...

We've got us some self-righteous little pokers down here. Ya see, just drawing cartoon animals or enjoying "Watership Down" doesn't make you furry. Nooooo, you're not GOOD enough. You're not furry if it's just a hobby. If you don't think you're the astrally projected soul of a wolf trapped in a human body, or you don't answer the phone with a "meow," you're not furry. Yep. Don't you feel terribly inferior now? Christ on a fire engine, what some people will try and force on you. I've always found the fact that 90% of Lifestylers consider themselves misplaced foxes, wolves, dragons, lions, tigers, or something equally powerful and noble, open to a special brand of mockery. Amazing coincidence how fantastically superior they all were in their animal lives, isn't it? Maybe if I occasionally came across a Lifestyler who claimed to be a reborn cockroach, I wouldn't be so cynical. I'm sure Freud would have a great, detailed explanation as to why people build up fantasy worlds for themselves like this, but I'm content to call these types Crackpots.

Slightly less obstinate but equally buttock-chafing are the the random groups who try their damndest to Super-glue a witch's brew of lycanthropy, shamanism, and veganism to a once-enjoyable subculture.

Don't misunderstand me; Werewolves are fun. Roll-playing a werewolf? Knock yourself out. Drawing werewolves? E-mail me some pointers, I can't do 'em to save my life. Claiming to BE a werewolf? SEEK HELP. You're not a werewolf. THERE ARE NO WEREWOLVES. Anyone who claims to turn into a giant dog at the whim of a celestial body should be mercilessly ostracized and laughed at with maximum cruelty.

...

And finally, we confront the long-held notion that Furries secretly wish they WERE animals.

I'm sure there are some that do, but they're in the minority. Trust me. I'm rather fond of being a homo sapien. I've grown quite attached to the idea of opposable thumbs, full-color vision, and the dawning of self-awareness. Space travel, Chinese food, swing dancing... the perks ain't bad, either. No, I'm holding my own on this end of the evolutionary ladder, thank you. Most furries are. But for the poor shmucks who want nothing more than to transform into an elk or bear or something equally ridiculous, a stay in an institution, not a fandom, is in order.
excerpt from This Sordid Little Business by Squee Rat[12]

Media

Videos

Meta

References

  1. ^ Burned Fur, Urban Dictionary. May 17, 2004 (Accessed 10/13/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  2. ^ a b Burned Furs, WikiFur. (Accessed 10/8/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  3. ^ a b Front Page, Burned Fur Wiki]. (Accessed 10/13/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  4. ^ a b Furry History | The Burned Furs, YouTube. Sept 7, 2019. (Accessed 10/24/2020) (Archived 6/4/2021)
  5. ^ The New FAQ, Burned Fur Wiki. Circa 2006. (Accessed 10/13/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  6. ^ Freezing Furs, WikiFur. (Accessed 10/24/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  7. ^ Who Dealt This Mess, Burned Fur Wiki. Circa 2006 (Accessed 10/13/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  8. ^ Xydexx, Xydexx website (Accessed 10/8/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  9. ^ Xydexx rec's "Threat of Violence?" Judge for yourself, 1999 April 28 post by Hangdog on alt.fan.furry. (Accessed 10/8/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  10. ^ Eric Blumrich, Wikifur talk page, circa 2005. (Accessed 10/8/2020) (Archived 6/3/2021)
  11. ^ Burned Fur Mission Statement, Burned Fur website. Accessed 6/17/2021 (Archived 1/12/2013)
  12. ^ This Sordid Little Business, Wikifur. Accessed 6/3/2021. (Archived 6/3/2021)