Today’s highly interesting read (02/16/22): If We Still Need to Talk About Cosby, Let’s Tell the Truth

Bill Cosby accusers Caroline Heldman (left), Lili Bernard
Bill Cosby walks out of the Montgomery County Courthouse
Photos: From USA TODAY:

Bill Cosby is escorted out of the Montgomery County Correctional Facility on Sept. 25, 2018, in Eagleville, Pennsylvania, following his sentencing of three-to-10-year prison sentence for sexual assault. The disgraced comedian, who has been denied bail, was convicted in April of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, then Temple University women’s basketball administrator. Photo: Jacqueline Larma / AP

Normally when I post these highly interesting reads they reflect my like-minded views. But I keep in mind that I select pieces that I also find to be, as they’re called, highly interesting. No medical journals from overseas. You get the picture.

Can’t say I concur with Philadelphia lawyer Christine Flowers on this one. She readily admits she still loves Bill Cosby.

Late this past Saturday afternoon I was driving home from a basketball game. Out of curiosity I turned on NPR’s newsmagazine “All Things Considered” just in time to hear host Michel Martin talking with comedian W. Kamau Bell about his new Showtime documentary, We Need To Talk About Cosby.

Martin reminded the audience that Cosby has been accused by dozens of women of sexual abuse spanning the length of his career. After being convicted in one case in 2018 and sent to prison, Cosby was released last year after the state Supreme Court overturned the conviction.

Bell from the interview:

“As I say in the doc, like I was a kid who was born into the – sort of the rise of Bill Cosby’s career and as a Black kid who was watching him on kid’s TV – ‘Fat Albert,’ ‘Picture Pages,’ ‘The Electric Company,’ then he was also, even in the ’70s, already on commercials a lot. And then he sort of – Bill Cosby himself inspired me to be a stand-up comedian, then ‘The Cosby Show,’ I felt like I was a member of the Huxtable family. So he was a part of the wallpaper of Black America and then – and I sort of like understood that he was saying, not only do you should you make good work, you should also be good in the world.

“So I was trying to do that in my career and then to find out about these accusations and then, as I believe the women who accused him, it just was always the thing of like, how do I reconcile with this? Because if somebody says, who are the comedians that inspired you growing up, I want to say Bill Cosby, but if I say Bill Cosby, am I denying what the survivors? And so this documentary comes out of just something that me, and I think a lot of people wrestled with for a long time.”

Now an excerpt from today’s read by Flowers:

Whenever I’ve written about these decades-old allegations of harassment and abuse, I get letters from people telling me I don’t understand the psyche of an abused woman. I’m told that if I were more empathetic, or more educated, or kinder, or smarter, or lots of other things that I clearly am not, I would never question a woman when she says that she was abused.

But these people usually forget that I don’t just write columns with uncomfortable opinions. I’m also a lawyer, and I’ve studied the legal system. And no matter how upsetting it might be to think that a woman who was abused is going to have to move on, because it’s just too late to bring her claims, that’s often the price we must pay for living in a system that keeps us from turning into an Arthur Miller play, where a pointed finger and an accusation of “witch!” is enough to get you locked up for the rest of your life. Or worse.

While Flowers makes an interesting legal argument Cosby gets zero sympathy from me.

One thought on “Today’s highly interesting read (02/16/22): If We Still Need to Talk About Cosby, Let’s Tell the Truth

  1. Pingback: End of COVID; Dems dying in rural areas; Thin Mints; WI Dems acting like VA; veils in church | This Just In… From Franklin, WI

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