by Ali Berman
Categories: Animals, Fashion
Tags: , .

Reese Witherspoon can be counted among the celebrities who love animals. She even has her own barn with donkeys, goats and pigs. So, when PETA wrote to her about the cruelty behind the python purse she was carrying in a recent photo, of course the actress responded by ditching the purse.

PETA sent Withersoon a video narrated by her former costar in ‘Walk the Line,’ Joaquin Phoenix, about how snakes suffer a cruel death for the sake of fashion.

The animal rights organization said about Reese’s decision to abandon the purse, “We’ve long known Reese to be a kind person, so we’re pleased—and not surprised—that she is hanging up her python bag for good. We hope Reese’s honest mistake will serve as a reminder for all of us to be extra-certain that what we’re buying is mock crock or fake snake.”

Python is actually illegal to buy in California, but not to carry. Many fashion houses including Chloe, the one that made Witherspoon’s purse, continue to use reptile skins even though the process of obtaining them is undeniably cruel. Kudos to Reese for being willing to admit her mistake and taking the side of compassion.

Via Teddy Hilton

About Ali Berman

Ali Berman is the author of Choosing a Good Life: Lessons from People Who Have Found Their Place in the World (Hazelden) and Misdirected (Seven Stories Press). She works as a humane educator for HEART teaching kids about issues affecting people, animals and the environment. Her published work can be found on her website at In early 2012 Ali co-founded flipmeover, a production company with the mission to use media to raise awareness of social issues.

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  • herwin

    another uneducated celeb. sorry, this is 2011, are there still people out there who honestly can wear fur or exotic skins and fake ignorance ? “i didnt know an animal died for my snake skin handbag !”

    • SquidNunc

      How about “I don’t give a shit that a snake died for my handbag, but since peta made a stink I might as well grab some free publicity from the gossip blogs.”

  • AJ

    What people should do is make bags out of all the Burmese pythons that have invaded Florida. This invasive species is destroying the ecosystem of the everglades by killing off endangered birds and other animals that live in the swamps, including the American Alligator. Plus they are dangerous enough to pose threats to humans (adults and children) and their pets.

    People could have eco-friendly snakeskin handbags made from 100% Florida captured Burmese python. Each bag you buy ensures there is one less python to eat an endangered Cape Sable seaside sparrow.