Raising a fist drenched in green paint and wearing a dress of “leaves” like a true lettuce loyalist, actor and activist Ashley Jackson laced up her vegan combat boots and took a stand against food injustice in a new PETA campaign. The campaign was launched at the historic Metropolitan AME Church, where she served healthy, humane meals and distributed free food on Sunday (August 6).
A vegetarian since birth who later went vegan, Jackson visited the M Street church to serve vegan meals to congregants and invite them to join PETA’s Food Justice project, which calls on the government to redirect meat, egg, and dairy industry subsidies into incentives for grocers in food deserts to stock fresh fruits, vegetables, and other nutritious vegan foods. PETA will deliver bags of fresh produce and protein-packed tofu, along with vegan starter kits, to underserved members of the community.
“Food justice and social justice are one and the same,” says Jackson, who belongs to a growing list of celebrities—including Paul McCartney, RZA, Pinky Cole, Jhené Aiko, Travis Barker, and Jermaine Dupri—who have teamed up with PETA to promote kindness to animals and introduce people to vegan eating.
Jackson points out that there are over 6,500 food deserts in the U.S. Yet the government spends only about $17 million each year to subsidize the fruit and vegetable industries while funneling about $38 billion of taxpayers’ money—the vast majority of which goes to big corporations—into the meat, egg, and dairy industries.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—has hosted food justice giveaways in Detroit, Atlanta, Indianapolis, and other cities. The group opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview, and offers a free vegan starter kit. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. Shout out to PETA and Ashley for attempting to change the way we look at food and our health in general.