Jeremy Meeks has been dedicating his time to protesting alongside the Black Lives Matter movement since the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police on May 25, and the experience has led him to reflect on his own run-in with the law. During his June 12 appearance on Good Morning Britain, Jeremy became increasingly emotional as he discussed racial injustice and police brutality. “Growing up, I was half White and half Black,” Jeremy shared about his time growing up in Tacoma, WA. “It’s a hard childhood to…I wouldn’t wish that on anyone,” Jeremy said, trying to find the words while giving his emotional response.
Jeremy described how systems in America — particularly housing, economic opportunity, and the justice system — were not “designed for people of color.” He explained further, “the system is all a design to keep people in the projects and the ghetto with no resources and no education. In public schools, you’re being taught how to be an employee. In private schools and good schools, you’re being taught how to run a business. You are given nowhere near the opportunities or chances…The system is not broken, a lot of people say that the system is broken. It’s not broken, it just was not designed for people of color.”As the interview progressed, the 36-year-old model mused on the current state of America. “In the year 2020 we are still talking about Civil Rights, that’s it; civil, the right to be civil in 2020,” he went on. Becoming increasingly affected by everything happening, Jeremy told the co-hosts, “I really have to be careful with what I say, I am very emotional…I have been a victim many times at the hands of the police and many times I had it coming but numerous times I didn’t, and I was just extremely victimized,” he confessed.
Jeremy, a convicted felon himself, discussed the viral videos of police brutality that have circulated in recent years, like those of George Floyd and Eric Garner in 2014. “If you see the videos and you see people handcuffed and they pose no threat whatsoever, it doesn’t matter if you have a record or not.” Jeremy was arrested and charged in 2014 with street terrorism as well as a misdemeanor charge of resisting/obstruction of justice. His mugshot went viral, circulating around the world and leading him to sign with WCM while he was still serving time.Since his 2016 release, he has gone on to walk in New York Fashion Week and Milan Fashion Week in 2017. Now, he is using his star power and platform for something vital — protesting alongside a number of celebs and public figures who are demanding an end to racial injustice.