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My Bill Cosby Dilemma

 

 

Within the next few weeks Actor/Comedian William H. Cosby will be sentenced for three counts of aggravated indecent assault for “drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand” at his Philadelphia home in 2004.

If convicted, “the 80-year old comedian faces up to 10 years in prison on each count.”  Technically, he could serve up to 30 years for the crime that was committed almost fifteen years ago. Since the courts may consider merging the counts, it is anticipated that “the actual sentence is likely to be much shorter.”

Currently the actor/comedian is “not permitted to leave his home.” If he chooses to leave Pennsylvania for another home, “it would have to be arranged ahead of time and he would be required to wear a GPS monitoring device.”

When deciding sentencing, “judges can take any number of factors into account.” Namely, his age, health and philanthropic work he’s done “over the last several decades and lack of prior criminal convictions are likely to be considered.”

According to CNN News reporter Aaron Cooper, “Cosby’s guilty verdict was the first criminal conviction of a high-profile celebrity since the rise of the #MeToo movement, which has forced a public reckoning with influential men accused of abusing their power.”

MY PERSONAL THEORY

As an avid Bill Cosby fan who remembers when he first arrived on the comedy circuit and attended his show at Western Michigan University in the mid ‘60’s, watched him play opposite white actor Robert Culp on “I Spy” as we celebrated his debut as the first Black man to appear in a prime time television show/network and faithfully watched “Fat Albert”, “The Cosby Show,” “A Different World” and numerous movies like “Uptown Saturday Night”, I marveled at the chocolate actor who played tennis. The only other black man who broached the subject of tennis was the late, great Arthur Ashe.

I have such strong opinions about this entire ordeal and have taken several steps to express my concern regarding the case. I’ve dedicated an entire chapter in my upcoming book, “THEIR TIME IS UP: Trekking through the #MeToo and My Bill Cosby Dilemma” because my admiration for him has not waned.

Of course, I’ve been challenged because of my position and support of Dr. Cosby despite the charges, which have not changed my position at all. At this point, it matters not to ME whether he did it or not. Why? Because the way our society is designed, better yet, the way of the WORLD is sexual exploitation of women.

I don’t condone it by any means, but let’s face it, women have been devalued since the beginning of time. There are even biblical accounts of

At this juncture, I must share some key and VALID truths about Dr. William H. Cosby.

  1. He made history from 1965-1968 (82 episodes) by breaking racial barriers and became the first American television (NBC) drama, “I Spy”, featuring a black actor in a lead role. The successful show spanned 82 episodes in just three years. Originally an older actor was slated to play a fatherly mentor to white Robert Culp’s character. After seeing Cosby perform stand-up comedy on a talk show, Sheldon Leonard decided to take a chance on hiring him to play opposite Culp. The show’s concept changed from mentor to protégé relationship to same age partners who were equals.

  2. American comedian Bill Cosby became a popular spokesperson for advertising from the 1960’s before his first starring television role until the early 2000s. He started with White Owl cigars and later endorsed Jell-O pudding and gelatin, Coca cola, Texas Instruments, EF Hutton, Kodak and the 1990 US Census.

  3. As of 2002, Dr. Cosby held the record for being the longest serving celebrity spokesperson for a product through his work with Jell-O. In 2011, he won the prestigious President’s Award for Contributions to Advertising from the Advertising Hall of Fame. He was one of the premiere black people to appear in the US as an advertising spokesperson based, in part, for his broad and far-reaching appeal to white consumers in an industry seen as slow to accept diversity. But in 2014, at the heels of allegations of sexual assault, his public image plummeted and was SIGNIFICANTLY DAMAGED, placing him near THE BOTTON OF A LIST OF 3000 PERSONALITIES related to trust and effectiveness!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. After years of research and consideration, Dr. Cosby made a bold move to purchase NBC Television from G.E. 1992. There is speculation that this is what led to the smearing of his pristine reputation, career and credibility.

  5. Five years later, January 16, 1997, his only son, William ‘Ennis” Cosby was ‘mysteriously’ killed in a “failed robbery attempt” as he pulled off Interstate 405 in Los Angeles, California, to “fix a flat tire” of his Mercedes Benz. Allegedly, Ennis was shot in the head by Mikhail Markhasev but his Roles watch, and money was still in possession at the time of death. An ‘acquaintance’ of the shooter led to his arrest. Markhasev was sentenced to life in prison although he claimed innocence until 2001, later admitting murdering. I wonder who got to him…

  6. Ennis was dyslexic which caused low grades and conflict within his family of highly educated parents. Initially, Cosby viewed his son’s disability as a “character flaw.” Based on Cosby’s critical stance on Black America’s “failure” (7/2/2004), that makes sense. But Ennis pushed himself to succeed and find favor in his father’s eyes by graduating Morehouse College and Columbia University, respectively. At the time of his death, he was a doctoral student at Columbia and tutored students with learning disabilities. It’s safe to say that Dr. Cosby tried to reconcile his conflict about his less than perfect son by creating the character, Theo on The Cosby Show who was also dyslexic. He also produced the Nickelodeon comic “Little Bill” in honor of Ennis.

  7. Dr. Cosby and his wife, Dr. Camille Cosby were generous philanthropist to Black U.S. Colleges/Universities making donations of up to $20 million! Bill Cosby is ranked among the top 7 black philanthropists in country. His net worth is $400 million!

  8. For decades, white America loved Bill Cosby based on his long-standing partnership with General Foods’ as the Jell-O spokesperson, comedic genius of cartoon character Fat Albert (1972) and the Cosby Show (1984), Bill Cosby earned the title AND respect as “America’s Dad!” In his role as Dr. Cliff Huxtable, a marginalized people garnered hope and strength once again as they stretched their imaginations, dreams and visions to believe that they too, could model the black, professional family that he and his attorney wife modeled for the world.

  9. Bill Cosby’s 1968-69 comedy monologue includes the use of aphrodisiac “Spanish Fly” for sex during an era (late 1960’s-1970’s) when ‘free love” was ubiquitous during the “sexual revolution” in an “everything goes” era. His popular comedy album of 1969, “It’s True, It’s True” was his 9th comedy recording with Warner Brother Records and his last. That fact alone gives pause…why was that his last with the label?  It was recorded live at Harrah’s in Lake Tahoe, Nevada.

  10. He received extra stage time (due to musician’s strike) that features Cosby performing stand up on topics including women, helicopters, ants, burlesque, gambling, Spanish fly and travels outside the U.S.  For reader information, the “Spanish Fly” is actually “an emerald green beetle of the blister beetle family. It is the “source” of terpenoid cantharidin, a blistering, toxic agent ONCE USED as an aphrodisiac. So TECNICALLY, it is not a “drug” per se, but an INGREDIENT of an aphrodisiac drug.

  11. The Album, “It’s True, It’s True,” reached the 21st spot on R&B albums chart and 37th on Billboard 200 the same year. CD’s of the recording were also released in 2005, 2008 and 2013.

  12. In December 2015, a random, unknown black comedian Hannibal Burress, lashed out on Cosby’s drugging monologue that initially recorded THIRTY-FOUR years earlier when our society was far less conservative than it currently is.  

  13. According to the Washington Post 4/26/18 – “Hannibal Burress unwittingly reignited the Bill Cosby firestorm. Burress who is often credited with helping put the actor’s treatment of women front and center in public consciousness said, “Bill Cosby has the f$#ing smuggest old black man public persona that I hate. He gets on TV, ‘Pull your pants up back people, I was on TV in the ‘80s. I can talk down to you because I had a successful television show.’ YEAH, BUT YOU RAPE WOMEN BILL COSBY SO TURN THE CRAZY DOWN A COUPLE NOTCHES,” Burress said. He encouraged the audience to “google bill Cosby when they got back home” indicating that it would have a whole lot more results than a search for his name. Apparently, they did…

  14. In the following days, the joke went viral, prompting dozens of women accusers to step forward. THIS is what ignited the decimation of William H. Cosby’s stellar reputation and career some 40 YEARS LATER. It also helped fuel the #MeToo inferno. “Burress has rejected the notion he played a pivotal role in bringing claims against Cosby to light telling GQ Magazine in 2015, “people are going to put on you whatever they want to put on you.”

  15. How did Cosby go from being America’s dad to a convicted sex offender of more than sixty women before his dramatic downfall culminating in a guilty verdict? Cosby was at the peak of what had been an extraordinary public life and came close to cementing his legacy as America’s sweater-clad father figure and no nonsense moral voice for the ages.

  16. Critics revel that he may “die in a prison cell” after being exposed as a criminal whom dozens of women say drugged and assaulted them while they were unconscious.

  17. Boston Globe labeled him “one of the most cherished comedies in television history.”

  18. In a 500-page, 2014 biography written by journalist Mark Whitaker of Newsweek Magazine, he said, “Historians will measure the seismic impact of The Cosby Show on the entertainment industry and on American Society. And they will point out how, by implanting such a positive image of black family life in the national consciousness, it helped Americans envision sending a black president and his wife and daughters to live in the White house less than two decades later.”

  19. Also, and coincidentally, “In 2014 California voters approved Proposition 47 which changed the possession of non-serious drugs from felonies to misdemeanors. This includes the “date rape drug”, possessed for committing sexual assault…” (Dan Kann, Kann California Defense Group – 1/24/2017) “This bill passed the California Legislature in August of 2016 and Governor Jerry Brown allowed it to become law without his signature. It took effect on January 1, 2017.”

  20. Although Bill Cosby was acquitted on June 17, 2017, a sentence is pending for September 24th for drugging a white lesbian, Andrea Constand in 2004. He faces a possible 30 years in prison for three counts.





 

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