Oscar winner Joaquin Phoenix’s criticism of the dairy industry irks Pa. congressman
The animal rights spiel about the plight of dairy cows by Best Actor winner Joaquin Phoenix during his acceptance speech at Sunday’s Oscars ceremony struck a sour note with a Pennsylvania congressman.
Phoenix, who won top honors for best performance by a male actor for his role as Arthur Fleck in “Joker,” blamed an "ego-centric world view” for a culture where one species can “exploit another with impunity.”
“We feel entitled to artificially inseminate a cow and when she gives birth, we steal her baby,” Phoenix said. “Even though her cries of anguish are unmistakable. And then we take her milk that’s intended for her calf and we put it in our coffee and our cereal.”
"Joaquin Phoenix winning Best Actor for playing the Joker fits him to a T because his comments would have been laughable were they not so offensive," said U.S. Rep. Fred Keller, R-Pa., about the actor's criticism of the dairy industry during his Oscars acceptance speech for best performance by a male actor.
That statement by Phoenix, a longtime vegan activist, provoked a heated retort from Republican U.S. Rep. Fred Keller, R-Pa., whose represents a district where dairy supports 8,181 jobs and has a total economic impact of $1.6 billion.
“Joaquin Phoenix winning Best Actor for playing the Joker fits him to a T because his comments would have been laughable were they not so offensive," Keller said in a statement. “Phoenix’s rambling remarks about America’s dairy industry prove how out-of-touch he is with the hardworking Americans who grow our food and create healthy communities. Phoenix’s Hollywood-elite world view has clearly blinded him to the sacrifice and struggles of America’s dairy farmers.”
Keller went on to say that when he travels the 12th Congressional District he represents and meets with farmers, he leaves impressed with their "work-ethic, thoughtfulness, and desire to help others despite facing generational industrial hardships and a libelous onslaught from anti-dairy activists. The callousness he showed in his speech last night proves he needs to get out of his Hollywood bubble to see how real Americans make a living. His remarks were detestable not just to me, but to the many hardworking family farmers across Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District with whom I speak with on a regular basis.”