On Friday, the Academy Award-winning actor, 52, attended a social justice rally for Floyd, a black man who died earlier this week after being forcefully restrained by police, held at Minneapolis City Hall.
“This is the toughest time when things like this happen,” Foxx said at a press conference alongside retired NBA player Stephen Jackson, who grew up with Floyd and has been vocal about the injustice surrounding his death. “All I wanted to do was let you know that we’re not afraid to stand...we’re not afraid of the moment.”
Speaking of the cycle of police brutality against people of color, Foxx said that it “overcomplicates everything” black parents tell their children about “how to function in life.”
“Even the things that we’ve taught them don’t seem to work,” he continued, asking how is it that incidents with cops can escalate “to something like we have today.”
“All we’re trying to do is ask questions of why,” he continued, making the comparison between Dylann Roof, the white supremacist who fatally shot nine members of a historically black church in 2015, and was arrested without incident, with what happened with Floyd, who was arrested after police received reports of forgery.
“I’m not a celebrity. I’m from Terrell, Texas. These are my brothers. This means everything because at the end of the day, when we see you guys out there on the frontline, we want to let you know that you’ve got support," Foxx continued. “God bless George and his family."
After speaking, Foxx also shared a lengthy video on Instagram of others speaking at the peaceful rally, which was attended by numerous social justice advocates.
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced on Friday that the fired Minneapolis police officer, who was filmed placing his knee on the back of Floyd’s neck, has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter.
Freeman also said that he anticipated charges would be brought against the three other fired officers who were present at the time of Floyd’s death on Monday.
When asked if public pressure, which included protests in Minneapolis and beyond that have turned violent, had anything to do with the charges, Freeman replied, "I am not insensitive to what's happened in the streets...[but] my job is to do it only when we have sufficient evidence."
In the initial media statement after Floyd's death, the Minneapolis Police Department alleged that he was "under the influence," and that police were responding to a report of forgery. Police also alleged that Floyd resisted arrest, although many lawmakers have questioned the account, pointing out that no video evidence shows Floyd resisting.