Tiffany Haddish Opens Up About Attending George Floyd's "Powerful" Memorial Service

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"The thing that made me really want to be there is I have watched my friends be slaughtered by the police," she said on 'Late Night.'

Tiffany Haddish opened up about attending George Floyd's memorial service during Tuesday's episode of Late Night With Seth Meyers.

"I decided to go because I was invited," said Haddish. "The thing that made me really want to be there is I have watched my friends be slaughtered by the police."

"I have watched people be murdered in front of me," she continued, noting that she saw a friend die when she was as young as 13 years old.

"I wanted to be there in support of the family because I understand how they feel," she explained. "Being there was like being there for all of my friends whose funerals I already went to." In addition to paying her respects to those who died, Haddish also reflected on the people that "have been locked up for no reason just cause they can't afford a good lawyer."

The comedian added that the service was "so powerful" and admitted that she didn't know it would be televised. "That was my first time walking into a funeral that was televised and a funeral of someone who was killed by a police officer," she said. "I thought that was really tremendous."

While she left her house to attend the funeral, Haddish remained aware of the pandemic and encouraged others to keep their masks on.

"The eulogies that were given were so powerful. It was a great message and I cried so much," she said. "Not just for Floyd, but for all of those people that passed away and all of my friends and my family members that are locked up."

Everyone participated in 8 minutes and 46 seconds of silence to acknowledge how long the Minneapolis police officer's knee was on Floyd's neck. During that time, Haddish thought, "What if someone's knee was on my neck for this long? How helpless were my friends when they were being attacked?"

"The amount of pain I felt was tremendous," she recalled, noting that she cried throughout the funeral.

After leaving the service, Haddish was informed that people were tweeting about her for being there. "I don't care if they're tweeting about me," she said. "If they're tweeting about me and that's bringing more attention to what's going on right now, great."

The comedian also admitted that she's been having a hard time staying positive. "I like to think of myself as an administrator of joy," she said. "During this time, it has been so difficult for me to express any kind of joy or bring any kind of happiness because I'm watching — I'm literally sitting back watching the world fall apart, what it feels like. And it feels like it needs to fall apart."

"Things need to fall apart and be put back together again in a way that's fair," she added.

The comedian later reflected on the protests across the country.

"I am so happy, finally, that people are seeing both sides of the coin. And that they're out there marching and protesting and that's great," she said. "But there needs to be more effective change made."

"I'm grateful and thankful that people see what we are going through over here and they have understanding and they're like, 'This has to stop,'" she added.

Haddish suggested that people call politicians, board supervisors, mayors and councilmen to encourage change and dismantle the system of oppression and systemic racism.

Host Seth Meyers and Haddish also discussed the way cops are commonly portrayed as heroes in pop culture.

"I wish it was more truthful," she said of police officers' portrayals in movies and television. "There are some movies that are very true. Like, I feel like Training Day was right on the money."

"Hollywood is Hollywood. They're telling stories and there's not always truth in those stories," she continued.

Haddish shared that she wanted to be a police officer was she was younger. "TV portrays them as upright citizens," she said. "They're here to protect and keep the peace. And then as I get older, as I'm outside more — especially when I went into foster care — it's not that. I see them antagonizing, creating drama amongst people."

Meyers later asked Haddish how the protests against police brutality and the COVID-19 pandemic will change her comedy sets.

"I definitely will be talking about different things. I'll be talking more about my experiences," she said.

"People been asking me, 'Tiffany, what's a way that we can make change? How can we be effective?'" she shared. "I'm like, 'Look, I'm no genius. I'm no leader.' But I know for me, like, this is something I'm definitely going to be talking about onstage. When I want things to change in my life, I stop having sex."

She reiterated, "If all women stop having sex, maybe men will change this system of things."