New Mercy For Animals Billboard declares “Eat Well. Live Well. Choose Vegetarian.”
Russell Simmons
Chicago, IL – A new pro-vegetarian billboard featuring hip-hop mogul, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Russell Simmons is giving South Chicago drivers some serious food for thought. Sponsored by the national animal protection organization Mercy For Animals, the eye-catching billboard, located on Interstate 94 at 169th Street, greets motorists driving into the Windy City and urges them to “Live Well. Eat Well. Choose Vegetarian.”
Speaking of the billboard launch in a new video produced by Mercy For Animals, Simmons remarked that he hasn’t been sick in five years, attributing his excellent health to his decision to stop eating animal products. On adopting a healthy vegetarian diet, Mr. Simmons urged: “Do the best you can in every instance, in every meal. And you’ll find yourself getting better.”
The new billboard campaign reaches a predominantly African-American audience and aims to encourage those at greater risk for heart disease and other deadly ailments caused by excessive meat consumption to consider plant-based alternatives to meat, dairy and eggs to improve their health and help animals.
According to the New England Journal of Medicine, before age 50, African-Americans are 20 times more likely to experience heart failure than whites. Additionally, the American Diabetes Association warns African-Americans are nearly two times more likely to become diabetic.
In addition to extolling the health benefits of a vegetarian diet in the new Mercy For Animals video, Simmons spoke to the horrific cruelty endured by animals on today’s factory farms.
“There are 40 billion animals every year that are born into suffering,” said Simmons. “That’s the worst karmic disaster in the history of the world.”
On factory farms, animals are crammed into tiny, filthy cages and crates so small many cannot even stand up, turn around or lie down comfortably. Without a single federal law protecting animals during their lives on factory farms, workers routinely beat, shock and kick animals, and neglect them to slowly die. Chickens routinely have their beaks burned off, piglets are castrated and have their tails cut off, and cows are branded and dehorned without any painkillers. During slaughter, many animals have their throats slit while fully conscious and suffering.
“The hidden cost of every hot dog, burger and nugget is egregious cruelty to animals,” said MFA’s executive director, Nathan Runkle. “Before reaching the dinner table, cows, pigs and chickens endure a nightmarish life of intensive confinement, mutilations without painkillers, violent handling, and finally, a merciless slaughter.”
To view MFA’s video with Russell Simmons and to learn more about factory farming visit
For more information contact Ari Solomon, MFA communications director, 323-896-2034 or


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