PETA, the world's biggest youth animal rights group, has recruited Miami Ink
star Ami James
to appear in its latest ads against the fur industry. In the ad, the 35-year-old tattoo artist can be seen showing off his amply inked body next to the clever tagline, “Ink, Not Mink.”
James unveiled the ad last Thursday at the Love Hate Lounge, a South Beach bar that he co-owns with Miami Ink
costar and fellow tattoo artist Chris Nunez
. To further show his support for Peta2's fight against fur, he has implemented a policy banning fur at the club, which he renamed “Love Animals, Hate Fur” for the night, and designed a special tattoo for the organization.
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In an interview with Peta2, Ami James discussed how his deep love for animals came about.
“I grew up with four dogs and 14 cats in the house,” he explained. “It was pretty crazy, but it turned me into an animal lover at a very young age.”
Now, the Miami Ink
star is the proud owner of a dog named Bella.
“She's the love of my life,” James said of his beloved pooch, who came along for his Peta2 photo shoot. “She's the greatest thing that's ever happened to me, pretty much.”
James stressed the importance of the youth's role in effecting change with regards to the treatment of animals, saying that the younger generation needs to take more interest in “planning a better place” for animals and “how not to wear fur and mink.”
"If we wouldn't be wearing mink, nobody would be killing [them]," he pointed out.
Ami James himself has witnessed several instances of animal abuse, and said that he doesn't understand the motivation behind hunting for the sake of display.
“To see people… bringing back a bear in the back of a truck. It just doesn't make any sense to me,” he said, expressing his disdain over those who showcase “glorified stuff animals” in their houses. “I just don't get it.”
His feelings about the fur industry are so strong that he refused to work with fashion designer Roberto Cavalli, whose line features fur pieces.
“I was watching TV and all of a sudden there was something about Roberto Cavalli's fashion and I saw people wearing cheetah furs and all sorts of crazy things,” he said. "[So, when] I got asked to do a Cavalli vodka design and I said, “F*** no, I won't do it. I'll never do it.”
-Lisa Claustro, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Image Courtesy of Peta2)