Christopher “Soul” Eubanks is a friend to animals and a champion for justice. A public speaker, an author, and a musician, Soul uses his arsenal of talents to advocate for both humans and nonhuman animals. Last year, Soul was one of Mercy For Animals’ first grantees of The People’s Fund, a program that seeks to ensure all advocates and organizations working toward our shared mission have equitable access to resources they need to achieve their goals.
Soul was kind enough to answer our questions about his work uplifting animals and marginalized communities.
You have such a passion for animal activism! What first drew you to veganism?
I became vegan after watching Cowspiracy, which led me to learn more about the ethics of veganism. I couldn’t believe that I had such a strong stance against the discrimination toward people of color but was unconsciously contributing to the mass oppression of nonhuman animals. I vowed to be vocal about animal rights going forward, since it was an oppression that I, like most people, unconsciously contributed to for the majority of my life.
What connections do you find between advocating for animals and advocating for people?
The connections that I made were that both human and nonhuman victims of oppression are attacked by many of the same systems, structures, and discriminatory practices. Discriminating against some groups helps to empower discrimination as a whole, and oppressors employ similar strategies, tools, and mindsets to oppress various groups.
Your incredible nonprofit, APEX Advocacy, works to “increase the number of BIPOC individuals that participate in animal activism.” What inspired you to found this organization?
I was inspired to create this space because I often felt animal activism spaces and events lacked diversity. I began to want to address this more, but I also didn’t want to be the focal point of this work, so a nonprofit was the perfect outlet to explore this further.
You highlight fantastic Black-owned businesses through Black Vegan Everything. Why is drawing attention to these businesses so important?
I think it’s crucial that Black people are not perceived as only associating with veganism through our dietary choices. There are so many Black vegans that use their businesses as a way to showcase their ethics and work toward collective liberation, many of which aren’t food related. Veganism is an ethical stance, and I wanted to showcase that the ethics of veganism in the Black community is expressed in a variety of ways.
What are some of your favorite products from businesses featured on Black Vegan Everything?
I would have to say I am more inspired by the businesses themselves. Be Well with Brialle addresses helping Black women through spiritual wellness and plant-based nutrition. The Vegan Prophets and Social Illz offer amazing animal rights clothing. Vegan Activist Alliance does animal rights activism through a lens that doesn’t ignore the impact of colonialism while also advocating for collective liberation. These are some of the businesses that have personally inspired me to create Black Vegan Everything.
How can our readers support your important work?
The best way to support my work is by visiting SoulEubanks.com/support. There you can choose which way you would like to support me/APEX. My Patreon account (Patreon.com/souleubanks) is also on there for anyone that would like to support me on a monthly basis.
Hungry for more inspiration? Check out 14 more Black vegan activists who are changing the world for people and animals.