Creative Commons license icon

Campus Newspaper Article on Furries at Texas A&M

No votes yet

A fairly negative piece that describes furry as a "fetish" and focuses on one particular (fairly extreme) individual and his difficulties with others on campus. Contains interviews with 'experts' who call furry an "alternative way to manifest... sexual preference" and an "attention-grabbing mechanism". Published Thursday in "The Battallion".

http://www.thebatt.com/news/2005/03/24/Aggielife/Get-Furry-901501.shtmlGet furry
Aggies unleash their animalistic nature
By Sonia Moghe
Published: Thursday, March 24, 2005

When Brendon Jones gets ready to leave his apartment, he puts on his pants, his shirt and his dog collar. Without the collar he feels upset; almost as though he has no identity.

Jones, a freshman computer engineering major, goes by Sakanz - the name engraved on the metallic blue bone on his dog collar - and is one of thousands of Americans who identifies himself with a group of people that calls itself the furries. He describes furries as people who like to dress up as animals and interact with each other.

"I'd say being a furry is like being something that you feel is more yourself than being a human," Jones said. "Some people identify more with animals than humans."

Jones said that a majority of furries are homosexual or bisexual, and often engage in sexual activities with each other while adapting the mindset and donning costumes of specific animals. Two furries rubbing up against each other is called "yiffing," and they sometimes make noises that their chosen animal would make.

The Internet has served as the main networking method for furries to find others with this same fetish, and people like Sakanz attend conferences specifically for furries to meet. In the Bryan-College Station community, Jones and his roommate know 12 furries and try to hold meetings occasionally. About four furries go to Texas A&M, he said.

Jones describes himself as being an "otherkin," a person who believes he or she was an animal in a past life and still carries its spirit. Jones believes he is a raptor, and wishes he had a tail and scales so he could be more like the animal he has always admired. He tries to assimilate the raptor way of life into his own because he believes it's better than the human way of life.

"(Raptors' lives are) more basic," he said. "You don't have to spend four years in college to get a good job to live. They can just hunt; they don't have to starve if they can't afford food.

At one point last semester, Jones tried to construct a raptor suit to feel more like a raptor, but the process was time consuming, and he soon gave up. Other furries, however, sometimes wear entire body suits or simply a tail or ears to identify themselves with the animal they more closely relate to.

This way of life hasn't always gone smoothly for Jones; people's reactions to his dog collar aren't always pleasant.

"One person asked if I got my rabies shot," he said. "I just ignored him."

Alex Harder, a freshman biomedical science major, lived with Jones for two and a half weeks at the beginning of the school year in a dorm room after the two were randomly assigned to live together. Harder wasn't happy with his assignment. During their time together, Harder slowly learned about Jones' lifestyle and decided he didn't want to live with Jones anymore.

"I was probably a (jerk) when he moved out," Harder said. "I was really scared. I didn't know what to do. I told him I couldn't live with his lifestyle."

Harder said that before Jones told him the specifics of being a furry, he noticed a number of drawings of foxes adorning Jones' walls, and when asked, Jones told him that they were pictures of his boyfriend.

Piles and piles of stuffed animals could be found around the room, he said, and recounts walking in on his roommate lying disrobed between the bed sheets with every single one of them.

"I didn't know what to do," Harder said. "I talked to my mom, and she said it was really gross and perverted."

Jones explained that he liked the stuffed animals because they look like animals, and they are "fun to snuggle with." Snuggling and cuddling are a big part of Jones' draw to the furry fandom, or culture.

"(Snuggling is) one of the side effects of being a furry," Jones said.

Jones' sexuality and lifestyle bothered Harder, and eventually Jones moved out of the dorm room into his own apartment.

Arnold Leunes, an A&M professor of psychology, said that because many furries are homosexual, and their behavior could be an alternate way to manifest their sexual preferences.

"It strikes me that there's a sexual motive," Leunes said. "It's not easy being gay in this society. (This) might be an attempt to find a little gentler touch to the whole thing. Americans aren't too at ease with sex anyway."

Because people like Jones and some of his other Furry friends became involved as furries when they didn't fit in with any particular clique in high school, Leunes thinks their furry antics may be an attention-grabbing mechanism.

"Kids tend to be outrageous sometimes, " he said. "That's one of the nice things about being young; you can do some crazy, outrageous things."

Tags:

Comments

Your rating: None

This article seems like it was written by someone who wanted to get this kid targeted at A&M. I would hate to see what happened after this article was published.

Your rating: None

That article was so poorly researched, it makes me wonder about the newspaper staff at A&M.

Your rating: None

You gotta be kidding me.

The writer of this article interviewed, apparently, one person, ONE, and took everything they had to say about the fandom and swallowed it whole.

This should be no surprise from a college/university paper... such publications are nothing more than highschool newsletters with delusions of grandeur, run by college students--- those execrable creatures who are granted the undeserved respect of adults, yet consistently demonstrate that their soft little skulls are STILL full of the mush of childhood.

Your rating: None

Meow, catty response much?

Yeah, the article sucked. Yeah, college newspapers often suck. (The one at my school is no exception.) Give college students a little credit, though. They're there because they're learning, if they knew everything they wouldn't have a reason to go. Don't judge all college students by just the idiot that wrote the article. Be better than the college students that judge all furries because of the one in the article...

Your rating: None

Somebody needs to write up a rebuttal to this piece. And somebody really needs to give these furs at Texas A&M a good lecture about keeping certain aspects of the fandom to themselves; this is a price to pay for having the fandom grow rapidly yet be more decentralized than ever. Furthermore, I think that a lack of focused, intellectual or pseudo-intellectual analysis from both within and without the fandom shows every time one of these articles is written*, and the furs in direct contact aren't very capable of conveying an experience that represents consensus view(s) of the fandom.

I can understand the roommate being uncomfortable with a lifestyler. I mean, most guys are creeped enough when walking in on a roommate masturbating, so snuggling with plushes in the nude must blow their minds, and this fur should have been more considerate or should have shown more restraint. And the professor mentioned seems to be giving an answer on the fly, since he obviously is unfamiliar with the fandom.

* Admittedly, I am biased toward the importance of intellectualism, since this would be the only thing of value that I personally might be able contribute to the fandom, besides some occasional depression-induced poetry, which is only arguably of value.

Your rating: None

And somebody really needs to give these furs at Texas A&M a good lecture about keeping certain aspects of the fandom to themselves; this is a price to pay for having the fandom grow rapidly yet be more decentralized than ever.

No, they don't. Mr. Jones did nothing wrong here. So he had some furry art tacked to the wall and wore a collar. This is an extreme furry lifestyler?(!) If he is responsible for anything, it would be an unrealistic expectation of privacy (or the assumption that his roomie had manners enough to knock before just barging in) arising from his not being familiar with dorm living. He is, after all, a freshman.

Piles and piles of stuffed animals could be found around the room, he said, and recounts walking in on his roommate lying disrobed between the bed sheets with every single one of them.

It was, after all, the creepy, homophobic, mommy-crying room mate who invaded Jones' privacy. While mommy was telling this putz about how gross and perverted furries are, she apparantly did not get around to reminding him to knock before entering! Furthermore, this does not ring true. If Jones had "piles and piles" of plushies, then, how could "every single one of them" fit in the bed with the covers over him? If Jones was surrounded by all those plushies, and under the covers, then how did the roomie know Jones was "disrobed"? I was under the impression that only Superman had X-Ray vision. Apparantly I was mistaken.
It is quite obvious to me that A&M is breeding the next generation of Weekly World News/Nat'l Enquirer scandal rag "reporters". Mr. Jones was set up.

Your rating: None

I like the part where the weirded-out student "talked to his mom", who informed him that furry was a gross perversion.

Seriously, it's a good idea to run things by your mom to find out if something's perverse or not. I mean, how else should a mature college student be expected to form his opinions...especially when confronted by Different People? It's not like college is supposed to be about new experiences and personal growth.

Trickster

Your rating: None

Heh... it's texas. I think that explains it.

-Maus

Your rating: None

LMAO!!

Your rating: None

Now I know why real goths hate poser goths.

Your rating: None

hahaha amen

Your rating: None

A majority? (stares)

"Jones said that a majority of furries are homosexual or bisexual,"

A majority? Wow, I love how papers can claim whatever they want, and say "Jones said" to remove all liability actually having qualified sources. Yoink! If I tell them that giving me lots of money is the reason for a majority of people's success, will they post that in their paper?

"Without the collar he feels upset; almost as though he has no identity."

Yeah, many people feel that way about clothing, now weren't you talking about furries, not clothing?

"an 'otherkin,' a person who believes he or she was an animal in a past life and still carries its spirit."

(laughs) Ohh the people over at therianthropy.org would be rolling in their graves at that, if they were dead that is. I suppose someone's inner vampire, pixie or centaur is the other otherkin then?

"It strikes me that there's a sexual motive," Leunes said. "It's not easy being gay in this society. (This) might be an attempt to find a little gentler touch to the whole thing. Americans aren't too at ease with sex anyway."

There is some merit to that. But it does not define furry, it defines the subsubsubculture of gentle gay furries. Saying what he said is like saying

"It strikes me that there's a marathon motive," Pandora said. "It's not easy to run a marathon. (Drinking water) might be an attempt to quench marathon runners' thirst."

Hey, gee, I wonder if there are any other reasons for drinking water than thirst from running a marathon?

(poink) You know... o.O ...the first two times I read this article I thought he was talking about the predatory bird, not the poodle sized, slow, feathery, scavenger dinosaur.

"Kids tend to be outrageous sometimes, " he said. "That's one of the nice things about being young; you can do some crazy, outrageous things."

Yeah... like write deceptive and ignorant newspaper articles. XD

Your rating: None

If you want to send an e-mail to the editor about the story:

editor@thebattalion.net

Your rating: None

Don't waste your time. It's obvious that these @$$-holes have made up their minds about furries. It would be like writing to Sumpin Offal, asking for equal time.

All you will be doing is fueling the next article on furry.

Post new comment

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <img> <b> <i> <s> <blockquote> <ul> <ol> <li> <table> <tr> <td> <th> <sub> <sup> <object> <embed> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <dl> <dt> <dd> <param> <center> <strong> <q> <cite> <code> <em>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

CAPTCHA
This test is to prevent automated spam submissions.