Giving any type of drug to a woman in order to have sex with her, against her will is wrong. There is no if, and, or, but, about that fact. Actually giving a drug to any person to have sex with them against their will is wrong referring to both moral and illegal behavior.
Like many, when I heard of the rumors surrounding Bill Cosby I thought they can’t be true. Maybe these are women who are trying to get money from him. I began to take notice when model and actress Beverly Johnson came forward. In September on A&E the documentary Cosby: The Women Speak peeled away more doubt. Then recently I read the transcript from the deposition he gave in 2005. In addition to side stepping answers from directions given by his attorney, the deposition included content about Cosby attaining Quaaludes, to give to women in order to have sex with them.
Reading through the document made my stomach turn. Before my eyes I felt the veil of an African American trailblazer, philanthropist, legacy dissolve and a monster revealed. I wrestled with the question of whether the actions of Cosby should impact his legacy? He has done so much good but that good is now tarnished by hideous selfish actions.
“His character is his commerce” these words said by comedienne Sheryl Underwood, spoke clearly of why all that Cosby has created is fair game for wreaking ball going through his career and other accomplishments. Our actions interlink with our character. Humans are not perfect we all have skeletons. However, in this case the skeletons involved taking advantage of multiple individuals. His alleged actions follow the pattern of a serial rapist. Yes that is a serious statement but so are the charges against Cosby.
I should state that the deposition I read was regarding the allegations of one woman. And to say there were others might require that I use the term alleged victims when speaking of multiple. However, a grand jury has found enough evidence to indict Cosby. Grand juries are presented evidence without knowledge of victim or defendant.
When I was old enough to stay home by myself during my parent’s date night, I listened to stacks of Cosby comedy albums. Yes, vinyl albums stacked up on my dad’s stereo and fell asleep to jokes and laughter.
I thought of Cosby as the favorite uncle. The one that bought you ice cream and from whom you could borrow money. He was the one that gave you sage advice. It is sad to see that he is becoming the weird relative that lives in the back room. The room you are warned to not go near.
I don’t know what can help bring healing or hope after all that has come out regarding Cosby. It might help for him to begin to apologize first to his victims/accusers and then to his fans. Sadly, I know that may never occur. As stated earlier “his character is his commerce” and the character sold to us was a facade. We were sold the funny guy on the Jell-O commercials and Americas perfect son, father and husband.
Cosby was arrested at the end of 2015. He is being charged with sexually assaulting Temple University employee Andrea Constand. Allegations are that Cosby drugged and raped her in 2004. Here in the U.S. you are innocent until proven guilty; it is now up to the court to take evidence found deemed enough for trial and work toward a conviction.
Finally, there are no perfect people. And Cosby is no saint. His fellow comedienne and activist Dick Gregory has implied there is a conspiracy against Cosby. My response is that the allegations against Cosby, some of which he himself alluded to in the 2005 deposition are his own doing. These allegations do not involve two consenting adults…being in ones presence doesn’t equate to consent. This is not even a long-term extra-marital affair but one specific situation and others with similar if not exact accounts of sexual assaults. Any unraveling of Cosby’s legacy is due to him pulling the string.
I’ve released the memories of going to sleep to his albums. And now I know that he just might be the relative in the back room that we were warned about as children. I admit it hurts especially when a leader in the African American community is broken by his own ego. No one but Bill Cosby knows why he did what he did…I believe it goes deeper than the desire for sexual conquests. Regardless the underlying reasons, in the end celebrity or not we should remember the golden rule…treat others as you wish to be treated.
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