Lee Hyori is no stranger to controversy. Anyone who has had not one, but two plagiarism scandals in their career knows controversy all too well. For the past month, Hyori has been at the center of another debate, this time regarding her fashion choices. At the beginning of October, the star tweeted to her followers an anti-fur message in hopes of swaying them from donning fur in the upcoming winter months. Within days, the singer was being labeled a hypocrite after being spotted in a leather jacket. She took to her twitter once again to apologize for the faux pas while also stating, “Everyone, I am not perfect.” The event has obviously been weighing on her mind over the last month because on October 31, she sent a message to her followers that she had finally gotten rid of all of her leather jackets.It should be pointed out that Hyori has only become a strong supporter of animal rights in the past year, and shortly after she began volunteering for animal organizations, she also became a vegetarian. When this news was released, Hyori was criticized then because she had just finished a contract as the spokesperson for Korean beef, and it was believed that she would hurt the beef market by making such an announcement so shortly afterwards.
While I understand that Hyori is a public figure and therefore has to be more conscious of her actions, I do not think it is fair that she has been so harshly condemned for trying to do what she feels is right as an animal lover. She did not try to bully people with her beliefs and she even admitted that she used to wear fur as well. She did not camp outside department stores and throw paint on people wearing and buying furs, only asked them to consider an alternative to wearing fur instead. I hope that since she has publicly gotten rid of her leather items, netizens will give her a break in the future, and the benefit of the doubt as well. Remember that many leather items also come in man-made alternatives that could be almost indistinguishable from the real thing in photographs. It would be a shame for the cause to lose her high profile advocacy out of her fear of netizen reactions.Do you think Hyori is a hypocrite? How do you feel about fur and leather for fashion?