Steve Aoki is no stranger to the world outside of EDM. Taking part in numerous projects, the producer/DJ has been branding himself as more than just someone to see at a rave. His newest venture is taking on animal rights, something that seriously deserves the attention.
According to Aoki, he was passionate about animal welfare issues and hardcore punk when he was just 14 years old. Now, 23 years later, he still has genuine concern for the other beings on our planet. He’s begun collaborating with The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and Humane Society International, starting an ad campaign to help save endangered rhinos from poachers. In an interview with the HSUS, Aoki talks about his stance on poaching and how he came to be such a fervent supporter of animal rights.
Check it out below! And if you’d like to donate to the cause, follow the links above!
What made you want to speak out about rhino poaching?
Once you read the statistics on how rhinos have systematically been killed for their horns for years, nearing the point of extinction, you cannot just sit there and turn your head. We as a species have done enough damage to the planet, to the animal kingdom, that it’s imperative for us to take a stand, raise awareness on these issues, do whatever we can to stop poachers.
Was there something you read or saw that drove home the urgency of this for you?
I read it somewhere and did some research, and that’s when a light clicked on in my head. There is no medicinal value WHATSOEVER in rhino horn. It’s supposed to do something for you, but there is no scientific proof of that. There is no reason to kill off rhinos.
What do you think is the best way to get people to stop “buying wild” —purchasing products made from wild animals?
All it takes is awareness. And if we can find it in our hearts to make a difference, I believe we can. But we gotta make a big loud noise for people to really give money and political attention to this problem and end it.
How has music given you a platform to speak out on these issues?
Music is the best conduit to your consciousness. It breathes energy, life and influence by speaking to your emotions with no bias, no judgment. It’s about being connected to something that connects other people. As my music is about expression, I can’t help but express personal feelings on issues that affect me, like poaching rhinos and hunting elephants for their tusks.