A Temple University student has come under fire on Monday for posting a series of videos on Snapchat mocking those protesting the death of George Floyd, a Black man in Minnesota who died after a white police officer was seen kneeling on his neck last week.
Jimmy Freas, a senior media studies and production major, is seen in the video filming himself walking in grass while satirizing Floyd’s name and criticizing those who have protested in response to Floyd’s death.
“This grass, this grass (expletive) didn’t stand up for George Foreman, Floyd, Foreman, George Foreman Floyd Grill Foreman Phil,” Freas said in the video, which was reposted by user @ondaviagra and viewed thousands of times. “(expletive) that grass! Nah, (expletive) you grass, you didn’t stand up for (expletive). You didn’t go march, (expletive) that!”
“Rock on, keep on (expletive) rioting, because that will (expletive) solve the problem,” Freas added.
In a reply to the reposted video on Twitter, Temple thanked the user who posted the video and condemned Freas’ behavior.
“Racist behavior, such as this, is disgusting and never acceptable,” the university wrote. “We’ve reported this student to the appropriate administrators and they are taking action.”
Temple issued a separate statement endorsing peaceful protest in the wake of Floyd’s death on Sunday, The Temple News reported.
In a statement emailed to The Temple News, Freas apologized to those he offended and said the video was a reflection of his ignorance.
“I never meant to disrespect the memory of George Floyd, I was just unhappy with the outcomes of some of the riots,” Freas wrote. “I try to find comedy in tragedy, but that was surely not the time or place to do so.”
“I’m working on bettering and educating myself to the issues going on in America,” he added.
Freas has been removed from his position at WHIP, Temple’s student-run radio station, according to a statement released by the station on Instagram Sunday.
“We apologize for the comments made and would like to emphasize that the viewpoints of this particular student do not reflect that of WHIP student radio,” the statement read.
OwlSports Update, of which Freas was previously a producer of, condemned his remarks in a Twitter post Monday.
“OwlSports Update wants to make it clear that it stands with those in favor of social justice and the people’s right to express those feelings,” the television show wrote.