"My son was brought up NOT to be racist," she wrote on Instagram

By Georgia Slater
June 03, 2020 12:38 PM

Erika Girardi is standing up for her police officer son as people around the world continue to protest police brutality and racial injustice after the killing of George Floyd.

On Tuesday, the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star participated in #BlackoutTuesday, an initiative across social media to go dark for a day to focus attention on racial inequality, by sharing a black box on her Instagram feed.

Shortly after sharing her post in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, one user suggested that she was not a supporter as her son, Tommy Zizzo, works for the Los Angeles Police Department.

"Your son is an officer!" the person commented.

Erika Girardi, Tommy Zizzo
| Credit: David Crotty/Getty Images; Erika Girardi/instagram;

Girardi, 48, was quick to defend her son, assuring that he was "brought up NOT to be racist."

"His job is to protect and serve ALL not just people that have his skin color," she responded to the user. "F—k you and stay off my page."

Many of Girardi's followers appreciated her reply and even shared screenshots of her response.

The reality star then reposted the supportive comments from fans on her own Instagram Story.

Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Girardi's response comes a little over a week after Floyd died after former officer Derek Chauvin pinned Floyd to the ground with a knee on his neck for several minutes despite Floyd's repeated cries of "I can't breathe."

Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter on Friday and the three other officers present during the incident were fired, but have not yet been charged.

Earlier this month, Girardi shared a rare photo of her 26-year-old son on Instagram, pointing out the resemblance between herself and the police officer.

“I put him on Instagram and he’s my best-performing post,” she told Andy Cohen on his Sirius XM show of her decision to share the photo of her son.

“He didn’t choose this life, I chose this life, and you try to protect them. I don’t care if he is an adult and he carries a gun and a badge," she said. "At the end of the day, he’s still my boy, but I posted it and I’m glad I did. He is a very fine young man and I’m so proud."

The LAPD has had a longtime controversial history with issues of race, infamously highlighted with the violent beating of Rodney King in 1991. Following the officers' acquittal for the crime, the city erupted in riots, eerily similar to protests currently occurring in L.A. following George Floyd's death.

To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:

  • Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.
  • ColorofChange.org works to make government more responsive to racial disparities.
  • National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help black youth succeed in college and beyond.