“Suck my dick and choke on it. I yield my time, fuck you.” With those 13 words, Jeremy Frisch made history on a Zoom call with the Los Angeles Police Department.
The LAPD was holding a special meeting on June 2 in the wake of protests over the murder of George Floyd, where they allowed any member of the community to speak. The day before, LAPD chief Michel Moore had said that Floyd’s death was on the “hands” of looters and rioters as much as anyone else, which is patently absurd. (His full quote? “Within those 700 arrests were 70 individuals who were either burglarizing or looting, victimizing businesses further. So what that tells me is that, two things. We didn’t have protests last night, we had criminal acts. We didn’t have people mourning the death of this man, George Floyd, we had people capitalizing. His death is on their hands as much as it is those officers.”)
Jeremy Frisch, an Asian Jewish 21-year-old Los Angeles resident, was angry. So, he decided to participate in the town hall. The aspiring filmmaker and recent California State University grad had rehearsed what he was going to say — for six hours! Community members were initially each given two minutes to speak, but as the hours went by and more and more people had something to say, the time allotted to speakers was eventually whittled down to 30 seconds. With his 30 seconds, and a voice that increasingly gets angrier and louder, Frisch delivered a perfect speech that soon went viral:
If you didn’t watch that, please do.
Here’s the full text:
“Hello can you hear me? Black Lives Matter, defund the police. I find it disgusting that the LAPD is slaughtering peaceful protesters on the street. I had two friends go to the protest in Beverly Hills a couple days ago and the protest was peaceful until the police showed up with their excessive, violent force, shooting rubber bullets and throwing tear gas. Is this what you think of protect and serving? Cause I think it’s bullshit!
Fuck you, Michel Moore, I refuse to call you an officer or a chief because you don’t deserve those titles. You are a disgrace. Suck my dick and choke on it. I yield my time, FUCK YOU.”
That last line — “I yield my time, fuck you!” — has become something of a rallying cry in the past week. On Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, he played Frisch’s 27-second call and then responded, “If the president is taking notes, that is what a perfect call looks like,” referring to what Trump claimed was a “perfect call” with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky last year.
When Alex Zeldin, who tweets under @JewishWonk, asked on Twitter: “Is the guy who went viral yelling so poetically at the LAPD Jewish?” Jeremy Frisch (who now tweets under @firemichelmoore) replied, “Yep!”
So, obviously, I reached out to him.
How did it feel to speak for those 27 seconds? “It felt good to let out my anger, frustration, and energy. I was fucking pissed,” he wrote to me over e-mail. He’s beyond surprised by the reaction to the video, explaining, “I didn’t expect attention at all. I was very surprised.” In another interview with Jezebel, Frisch explained that everything except the last “fuck you” was planned — and the “I yield my time” comes from his time in debate class.
Frisch’s words have since been meme’d, tweeted, turned into graphics, and analyzed for their Shakespearean poetic beauty.
In Los Angeles, we don't say "goodbye," we say "I yield my time, fuck you" and I think that's beautiful
— Kris Ligman (@KrisLigman) June 8, 2020
gmail's smart reply is learning pic.twitter.com/FKetzfa7BZ
— Mike Scollins (@mikescollins) June 9, 2020
I was delighted to hear Jeremy Frisch aka @firemichelmoore utterly brutalize the LA Police Commission on June 2’s public Zoom meeting.
Michel Moore has done an absolute shit job of managing his officers during LA’s BLM protests and can indeed choke on all of our dicks. Fuck him. pic.twitter.com/vZUdFGDatU
— Funnel Cakes Rule! (@SumoYokai) June 9, 2020
Song of the summer. We hope you enjoy these graphics but you have to make sure to read about the #PeoplesBudgetLA coalition, led by @BLMLA at https://t.co/ucLEga3OGp #iYieldMyTimeFuckYou #DefundThePolice pic.twitter.com/xgdTdfUwBY
— People's City Council – Los Angeles (@PplsCityCouncil) June 9, 2020
One tweeter even shared an explanation of why we’re all so “phonically satisfied” by Frisch’s “suck my dick and choke on it / I yield my time / Fuck you!” (The answer is “it’s basically Shakespeare.”)
you wanna know why you’re all so phonically satisfied by the line “suck my dick and choke on it I yield my time fuck you!” ???? it’s cuz it’s basically shakespeare y’all. it feels like a heartbeat – literally it’s how you speak when your body is guiding you pic.twitter.com/h2Zw3oF5aO
— Alyssa (@alyssalavacca) June 8, 2020
People have even turned Frisch’s words into protest signs:
Vibe check pic.twitter.com/7EcI6rWPsG
— maybe: defund the police (@ricci_sergienko) June 8, 2020
“It’s so surreal seeing people with signs of the stuff I said, but I love that so many people found inspiration and energy in the words I’ve said,” Frisch said. “I love all the art, music, memes, signs, etc. people are creating, spreading my message. It brings me so much joy and it also inspires me to pursue my passions, too. I just love creative people. I want to help improve the diversity of the entertainment industry, so we can share more stories from more voices.”
Frisch says his Jewish and Asian identity has influenced his social justice; his dad is Jewish American and his mom is from Hong Kong. And yes, both his parents heard the call. “My dad wasn’t too proud of me, due to the use of profanity, but if that’s the way he feels then I don’t mind.” Growing up, he attended synagogue and celebrated Passover, Hanukkah, and other Jewish holidays. He doesn’t really practice Judaism — or any religion — anymore, yet still identifies as Jewish.
“I think my identity as mixed — Asian and Jewish American — influences me towards social justice. I’ve faced discrimination for being Asian from all sorts of people, and I’ve also faced discrimination for being mixed from Asian people. I’d like to say, though, that the discrimination I have faced is not the same experience as the systemic and institutional racism that Black people have been up against, and are currently up against. I make an effort to listen and learn from Black communities.”
In Frisch’s newfound viral fame, he wants to use his platform to raise other voices, especially voices in the Black community. “I intend to keep the momentum going,” he said. “This movement is not just a trend. I will keep fighting, like many others.”
On his Twitter — again, @firemichelmoore, iconic — he has shared links to GoFundMe campaigns, petitions, and bail funds, and is rallying people to continue to call into the LAPD’s Zoom calls.
@firemichelmoore is rallying ppl to Zoom call into LAPD 6.10.20 / 9:30 AM. Really inspired by Jeremy's "I YIELD MY TIME. FUCK YOU." so I made these. (Zoom call-in info not specified in graphics. LAPD keeps changing it. See thread for current info.) [1/?] pic.twitter.com/QtAUn64hCV
— 하늘.haneul 🌈✨ || BLM (@000435time) June 10, 2020
Plus, some jokes:
Alot of people have asked me if i wanted to be a rapper so here's my attempt:
His palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy
There's vomit on his sweater already, fuck eric garcetti
— Jeremy Frisch (@firemichelmoore) June 8, 2020
Frisch has only recently attended his first-ever protest. “It was one in my local community and it was one of the most powerful experiences I’ve ever had in my life. The organizers did such a great job of keeping it peaceful and they also made sure to educate us while they were at it, too. I’m so proud of my community.”
And Frisch’s advice for others calling into open community meetings?
“Do your research. Listen to Black voices. Prepare yourself in advance so you can get your points across and not get cut off. Don’t censor yourself.”
And with that, we yield our time.
Update (6/11 2:30 p.m.): Several readers have pointed out that the phrase “suck my dick and choke on it” is rooted in misogyny. While we don’t believe this was Frisch’s intent, we do want to acknowledge that many find this language harmful.
Header design by Grace Yagel; words by Jeremy Frisch.