The often controversial and largest animal rights organization in the world is after the Queen of Soul’s iconic fur coats.
Tracy Reiman, the executive president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, sent a letter to Aretha Franklin’s family on Friday requesting the coats so that PETA can donate them to be used as clothing for the homeless and as bedding for needy animals, according to Page Six.
The letter, addressed to Franklin’s niece, Sabrina Garret Owens, who has been appointed as the personal representative of the late singer’s estate, said that furs belonging to the likes of Anjelica Huston, Mariah Carey, Kim Cattrall, Mary Tyler Moore, and Sharon Osbourne have previously been donated in this manner.
“In the past, we’ve given donated fur coats — some coming from other wonderful women…to homeless shelters in the U.S. (including in Detroit) and to displaced refugees in Afghanistan, Mongolia, and Syria,” the letter read, according to the report.
Franklin was known for her many furs, which she often wore on stage. Who could forget the incredible moment she dropped her coat as a grand finale during her performance at the Kennedy Center Honors dedicated to Carole King in 2015? The crowd went wild, including then-President Barack Obama, who was brought to tears by Franklin’s performance.
“By donating Aretha Franklin’s fur coats to PETA, her family could expand her legacy of social justice to animals. While we can’t bring back the animals who suffered and died for them, these coats can help others by providing some much-needed warmth to orphaned animals and humans in desperate need,” Reiman said in a statement, according to the Page Six report.
This isn’t the first time PETA has asked Franklin — or a representative in this case — for her minks and chinchillas. In 2008, PETA Vice President Dan Mathews called the late singer a “court jester” and a “clown” in a letter that included body-shaming language.
“Dear Aretha, 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 letter read, as posted on a blog on PETA‘s website.