The ‘Joker’ star has been honoured for his long standing dedication to seek welfare rights for animals.
PETA kickstarted its 2019 award season by honouring Joaquin Phoenix with the ‘Person of the Year’ award.
The actor has been vegan since the age of three and has been using his fame and popularity to consistently speak up for animal rights.
He has participated in several PETA campaigns against wool trade, dog leather, turkey meat, and exotic skins fishing.
“Joaquin Phoenix never misses an opportunity to turn the spotlight away from himself and onto animals’ plight and to set a great example of walking the vegan walk,” said PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk in a statement.
The compassionate star has led and been actively involved in several animal right movements over the past 12 months.
Some of them include:
- A hard hitting PETA anti-speciesism ad that was displayed across billboards in Times Square and on Sunset Boulevard, captioned, “We Are All Animals.”
- In March, he mobilized a memorial service in which activists marched through city streets cradling animal carcasses obtained from factory farms.
- A pro vegan documentary- The Animal People that investigates how the US government deals with animal rights activists.
- An animal vigil to comfort pigs en-route to a slaughter house in Los Angeles, spending time with them and offering them food and water.
And many more:
At an interview during his Joker film promotions, he veered the conversation towards animals and his switch to veganism stating that after seeing a fish severed violently in his childhood, he ditched animal products.
“It was just absolutely obvious that it was something that we didn’t want to participate in and we didn’t want to support. To me, it just seems obvious. I don’t want to cause pain to another living empathetic creature,” he said.
“I don’t want to force it to be indoors and fattened up just to be slaughtered. It is absurd and barbaric,” he continued.
“I don’t understand how you could witness that and not be affected by it. But certainly, also the effect that it has on our environment is devastating. So for me, it’s just, it’s my life and always has been my life and it’s really one of the most important things to me.”
While honouring Phoenix with the award, PETA added that his dedication exemplifies that “when it comes to feeling fear, pain, and love, a human being is no different from a hen or a hamster.”
How influential is Joaquin Phoenix’s activism? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
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