By Lavern Merriweather
Brotha has recently written several valid and eloquent posts about the growing number of rape accusations leveled at once popular TV star Bill Cosby. He states some possible reasons why black people are reluctant to jump on the bandwagon to attack black males that are famous. I agree with him, especially the one about how white males don’t hold themselves under the same microscope of scrutiny.
It was recently revealed that another TV dad has fallen from grace. The star of a once popular show “7th Heaven” admitted that he had sexual relationships with at least three underaged girls. However, in that case the actor, Stephen Collins, is white. So, the rules for vilification change dramatically as they always do.
Despite the fact that some white folks in the media try to pretend that everything is equal when it comes to male celebrities behaving badly, we all know what the real truth is. Overprivileged and arrogant white males in the media aren’t about to start holding themselves to the same standards as those lowly Negroes. It hasn’t happened yet, and I think it never will, particularly when you have a bunch of egomaniacal pissants who believe that their farts smell like daisies.
The White male’s guilt is not the same, because white males can’t ever really be guilty don’t you know. There also has to be some mitigating factor, especially the one about money. It seems that any time a white woman accuses a white man of a heinous act, she has an ulterior motive. There can’t be any valid proof of her tale, because white males just don’t do those sorts of things. They can control their impulses, unlike the dark Negro man, and since when do white males have to rape anyway?
It’s black men that have no accountability of their libido, which is why a white woman’s cry of rape must be believable instantly. The women folk must be protected at all costs, except from white men, because they don’t do shit like that.
I would like to say that this post isn’t meant to be an indictment on the accusers. Honestly, I don’t know if the man is guilty or not. However, there are a few things about the accusers that are problematic, to say the least. And yes, I know that not all of the accusers are white. Still, the majority is and that’s what has white folks in the media so up in arms. Some white males in the media like shock jock Howard Stern have mentioned how supposedly ‘powerful’ Mr. Cosby was and still is. WHAT?!
Please! In the era that most of the accusers are describing, Mr. Cosby was a barely known up and coming comic. He has yet to have a successful movie career. So, he has never been anything but a TV star. In that case, where’s all this ‘power’ that white males in the media are imaging.
Some of the accusers are former playboy bunnies, and it’s no secret that Bill Cosby was a frequent guest at the Playboy mansion. That leads me to ask this question, wasn’t their boss Hugh Hefner a far more powerful man than Mr. Cosby and therefore could have helped them? You mean to tell me that a group of treasured white women working and living with a millionaire white man can’t trust him to the extent that he would have Cosby’s nuts in a jar by midnight were they to come forward?
Sorry, but I don’t buy that with a 12 dollar bill. Something IS rotten in Denmark when there is not one attempt to prosecute this alleged predator. Also, if they were so damn afraid of him when he was basically a nobody, why are they saying something now when he does have the power to stick it to them in court, particularly the mouth that bored former supermodel Janice Dickinson. Please! That woman has never shied away from any opportunity to flap her big yap, but back then, she was just so terrified. Come on!
I was watching the film “Daddy’s Girls” starring the chocolate wonder Idiris Elba, and he was recounting a painful memory from his college youth. He had finished having sex with a white female classmate at her parents’ house. When daddy dearest comes home and finds a half- naked young black man in his house, he hollers at him to leave then coerces her into saying that she was raped. Despite the fact that their sex was consensual she still decried that she was a victim of the horrible Mandingo.
Brotha also pointed out, and rightfully so, that white males like Collins or Roman Polnaski who are blatantly guilty get a free pass. So for the black folks who want to whine about how we shouldn’t support black males, because white people support their perverts, I say wait a damn minute. We don’t know for sure if this man IS guilty, and that there isn’t a smear campaign to tear down yet another n**ger.
It’s not like this would be the first damn time that’s ever happened, and no, white people don’t get to judge when they refuse to hold themselves accountable for awful shit. You want to talk about powerful, how about the Kennedy family and the cousin twice accused of rape. Many of the angry white folks slamming Bill hurried with winged feet to defend precious little William Kennedy Smith of rape, although he had two accusations of rape and two women at the not-for-profit center where he worked threatening lawsuits of sexual harassment. The same folks denigrating Mr. Cosby had no problem getting over the “where there’s smoke there’s fire” sentiment with Smith. They had no qualms about another Kennedy cousin Michael having an illicit affair with a 14 year-old girl when he was in his 30’s. Or when another Kennedy cousin named Michael Skakel was charged with murder, and let’s not forget old uncle Teddy and that whole Chappaquiddick matter.
But according to white people in the media, an extremely wealthy, well respected white political family doesn’t have the same power as a rich black male TV star that, for most of the beginning of his career when these rapes were alleged to have happened, barely had a penny to his name. Still, he was supposedly that powerful and well-connected that he could make 15 rape accusations magically disappear.
Bill Cosby shouldn’t have been a comedian he should have been a magician. Maybe the governor of Arkansas because nobody took very seriously the multiple accusations of sexual misconduct against former president Bill Clinton either, even when one of the women Juanita Broderick claimed that Clinton raped her when he was governor. Her cries were seen as the desperate act of the Republicans to shame one of the best Presidents ever. Juanita was not only not believed but degraded at every turn by venomous white folks in the media saying that she was a bitter ex-employee out for a buck.
This is the very problem a lot of black folks have when white people try to act holier-than with a famous Negro. You use any derogatory rationale to explain away the notion that a white male, especially one that has a shitload more power than Bill Cosby could ever hope to, could not be a bad guy. All while keeping up the false impression that you care so damn much about white women. I loved to see even half that protective nature when the one being accused is also white.
By Lavern Merriweather
I have to admit. I’m very conflicted about this whole Bill Cosby rape scandal. I, like a number of black people, grew up watching and enjoying his groundbreaking smash comedy “The Cosby Show” in the 80’s. I also remember fondly sitting in front of the TV every Saturday morning for “Fat Albert”. However, I can’t get pass the ugly and expanding list of women that are accusing him of being a rapist.
Those who were pissed off at Mr. Cosby for his inflammatory words about poor people at a charity dinner are now probably gloating. They will say “I told you so” and claim that it’s always the ones who are first to criticize others that have the biggest skeletons in their closet. I don’t know if that’s true, and I don’t find fault with those people either. Bill brought a lot of this negativity on himself with his haughty, arrogant and judgmental comments. Although I did, and still do, agree with him about taking some accountability for your actions, I refuse to get past many of his inconsistencies.
When Mr. Cosby had to face critics of his own like noted activist and author Michael Eric Dyson instead of defending what he spoke, he backtracked. Cosby said that he didn’t want it to seem that he was letting white people off the hook. Come again?
White people had nothing to do with his angry rant, and he said as much. Then he tries to play the CYA game by saying that he meant all poor people and not just black folks. Well, that’s interesting considering that black people were the only ones he mentioned. If his feelings and ideals weren’t worth him defending, then I sure as hell ain’t going to protect them, especially not now that these allegations are gaining steam and women are coming out left and right.
Of course, there are some black people who still believe in Mr. Cosby and have attacked these women for coming forward now. Some are saying that they should have spoken up years ago, particularly the 63 year-old woman who is in jail and claims that Cosby raped her four decades ago when she was just 19. This is the part where I am having the most trouble. Regardless of what you think about Mr. Cosby, this is still America. And I find it impossible to believe that a black man, even one that is rich and famous, could get away with raping a young white woman 44 years ago. A black man that is a celebrity in this day and age can’t expect that their celebrity would prevent them from facing either scrutiny or prosecution.
I also have a major problem with the way this story is being handled by a very racially biased media. Any time the accused is a black male, the word accuser is treated with the utmost respect. The accuser gets the complete benefit of the doubt and her credibility, no matter how shaky it is, never called into question. Think about for a minute how that scenario is played out when the accused is a white male. When the accused is white, it’s the absolute opposite. Her reputation is immediately dragged through the mud and every last little detail of her personal life is put on display in an attempt to discredit her. She is judged harshly with very few people wondering if she just might actually be telling the truth. No, she is forever out to make a quick buck. A concept that has yet to be entertained in the case against Bill Cosby. I guess being rich and black means that nobody wants to ever take monetary advantage of your troubles.
Granted, I can to some extent understand why a lot of black people are using this as a chance to point fingers, because they are apt to hold grudges for what Cosby said at the fundraiser dinner. Yet, I would remind those people that whatever your feelings about him, don’t forget the double standards of arrogance that continue to linger anytime there is a salacious scandal involving a black man, even if the man in this situation is somebody that rub a bunch of people the wrong way with his scathing commentary on the less fortunate.
Trust me when I say that white folks in the media and public hurrying to persecute him don’t give a rat’s ass about the issue of rape. This is nothing more than yet another opportunity to act self-righteous by proclaiming how horrible and wicked them evil Negroes is. Never mind the many times that white males have been accused of rape particularly against minors [cough Stephen Collins cough]. However, the main problem I have with what he said was about black people and the police that appears very fitting at the moment. One could easily say that his comments about police being justified in shooting and thus killing a black person, because they were running down the street with a loaf of bread or pound cake are currently coming back to haunt him. He was so quick to vilify the black folks in a much dire financial predicament than himself.
Don’t forget this is the same man that for decades has flat out refused to get involved in the debate on race in America. While other famous, well known black men like Dick Gregory, Harry Belafonte and Paul Robeson were taking up the cause of civil rights, Cosby stayed far away from the fight. So, for those that wonder why it is that these women are coming forward only now, I would say what the hell took him so long to make a statement on the state of black folks’ lives in the USA. And when he finally did get around to saying something, it was just to look down his nose on others he considered beneath him. Anybody that didn’t hear an inferiority/superiority complex in what he spoke is either crazy or going deaf.
The great and spectacular intellectualist Tariq Naheed made some very fitting comments about what is happening to Cosby. Mr. Naheed pointed out and rightfully so that when Cosby chastised the white Osbourne family the media rushed to get their opinion on what he said. I certainly don’t recall white people praising his ‘honesty’ or thanking him for telling it like it is while complaining about his detractors and telling them to back off. Then, he was a mouthy Negro that didn’t know his place by talking shit about some rich white folks, something that is a big fat no-no in America. He had his n**ger moment then, and he is definitely having one now. Turns out throwing other black folks under the bus to save his own skin wasn’t the guarantee that he thought it would be to keep them from attacking him. Perhaps offering them a couple of free cases of Jell-O pudding pops will do the trick.
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It looks like we’re either in the eye of the storm that is the rape scandal of once-beloved father figure Bill Cosby, or that the storm is weakening. I prefer to think we’re in the eye. Something else is sure to come up.
As stated in my previous entry observing Cosby’s downfall, the news and tabloid media stuck with the story for all its juiciness. Left-wing oriented media condemned Cosby almost instantly keeping track of the unraveling story and express progressiveness to speaking out against rape culture while, to no surprise, right-wing media supported him. After all, he did tell black people to get it together and to stop blaming the white man.
But one thing I noticed is that most black people were still supporting him during this trying time where a role model’s image is being destroyed due to accusations of over a dozen women, mostly white, who said that they were drugged and raped by the comedian. We’ve seen and done this before with other blacks, including those who hold little to no regard towards the black community.
Remember the O.J. trial? I’ve never seen people so heavily divided on one issue as I did with that instance in my young life. Every black person I knew said without flinching that O.J. was innocent. At the same time, every white person I knew said the opposite. O.J., a once admired football star-turned-actor was charged with the murder of his wife Nichole Brown and friend Ronald Goldman, both white. It was white America’s greatest fear played out on an international scale in what was considered by some as the trial of the century.
O.J. was found not guilty by the courts, but he was still guilty in the eyes of many. Yet, a lot of brothas and sistas, to this day, still believe O.J. was innocent, even though he practically hung up his blackness.
Why is it that we support those who disregard or look down on blackness like it’s a bad thing and them being black themselves? I would venture to guess that it’s the same reason why white folks stick with people like Darren Wilson, the cop who shot and killed Michael Brown, or George Zimmerman, the vigilante white Hispanic who shot and killed Trayvon Martin. Living in a nation that prides in despising differences can create a sense of paranoia that the dominant group is out to get your group members, and that paranoia came from events that the dominant group doesn’t want to talk about.
As with the Cosby case, it reminds black Americans of the dark days of the past where black men were thought to have a lust for white women so strong and savage that they would rape them every chance they get, especially if they were free. White males back then, and today, believe that black men want to rape white women, and even white woman believe it to the point where they would lie about it dooming innocent black males to lynch mobs.
It was so bad that even flirting with a white woman would get you killed. Don’t believe me? Ask Emmett Till, or rather, ask his next of kin.
When a black man is accused of rape by a white woman, it brings back history’s not-so pleasant moments. Sure, not all of us were alive when this all went down. And it’s not as fatal as it used to be. But the fear is real and widespread. As you know, we live in a culture of collective judgment. So, one black male accused of rape, not only proves stereotypes held by racist white men but also, concludes that most or all black men are culpable of the same viciousness.
But it’s the same in reverse. As mentioned earlier, Zimmerman and Wilson had a lot of white supporters backing them. Why? My guess would be related to a recent study that said that whites believe there is more racism against them than blacks. In other words, they think black people are rising to the top of the food chain, and that scares the crap out of them, especially with one black man in particular, the one living on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
It also goes along with many whites lacking empathy for young black males, believing that Martin and Brown were indeed, dangerous thugs up to no good. And they were rightfully taken out by men who feared for their lives, even though they both had guns and their victims didn’t.
Cosby’s image has been broken, almost beyond repair. Even so, people are still sticking with him. Like stated in a previous article, it’s hard to imagine a black man, even a famous one, of getting away with raping several white women. Cosby would not have likely made it as a co-star on “I Spy” let alone would’ve had a future producing “Fat Albert” and “The Cosby Show”. Yes, rape is a serious matter that must be confronted and tackled. However, false rapes must also be accounted for as well, especially when history has proven they can get you killed.
So yes, expect black folks to have Cosby’s back. Expect us to still think O.J. is innocent of the double murder from years back. Even though they practically dissed us, we still support them, because in the end, whether they like it or not, they are still black in America and no status or money can protect them no matter what, guilty or not.
UPDATE: Former Supermodel Beverly Johnson comes out and says she too was drugged by Bill Cosby. You can read about it here.
We lost Cliff Huxtable. We lost Bill Cosby. We lost a man who brought forth the positive image of black family life to American mainstream TV. And it looks like the person responsible is none other than Bill Cosby himself.
You might wanna get comfortable, because this may be a long and depressing article.
I used to love Bill Cosby. I remember watching his comedy special “Bill Cosby: Himself” when I was young. I even recorded it, and no matter how many times I watched it, I laughed my ass off.
I watched episodes of “The Cosby Show”. It was just as gut-busting when it came to humor, but it was positive, clean humor that only Cosby could give. Not only that, I saw something very few people saw on TV back in the day, a well-to-do black family with two career-driven, positive and professional parents and children who did not fit the negative stereotypes of black youth. It was amazing!
Bill Cosby was like a father-figure to most of his audiences. He even displayed that persona during his infamous Pound Cake Speech at the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education decision which drew mixed reviews. Some, like famed professor Michael Eric Dyson criticized his chastising of poor blacks for not holding up their end of “the deal”. Others thought he was being honest. He seemed to care about the direction poor black communities were heading. Whatever your opinion of him and his stance on the black working class, you still kinda admire him for all the contributions he gave to the media promoting positive black images from Fat Albert to Cliff Huxtable.
But all of that is crashing down as you read this. We could’ve been deceived by a man who’s not at all like Cliff Hustable in real life. Then again, some would say that he has done a lot for positive, black media imagery and black colleges. So, he certainly can’t be what over 20 women says he is. A rapist.
Cosby has been accused over the years of raping so many women. Alas, the media only reported this less than a few times since he became a household name. So, it was shocking to find out that he has been accused of sexual assault and rape before. After all, this is a man scolding poor black people to do better. Yet, he was accused of heinous crimes! Talk about hypocrisy. And it was another comedian, Hannibal Burress, who pointed that shit out in a comedy routine:
“Bill Cosby has the f***ing smuggest old black man public persona that I hate. Pull your pants up, black people. I was on TV in the ’80s. I can talk down to you because I had a successful sitcom. Yeah, but you raped women, Bill Cosby. So, brings you down a couple notches. I don’t curse on stage. Well, yeah, you’re a rapist,” Buress joked.
The video that recorded that piece went viral. And it was all downhill from there for Cosby. From that point on, one by one and counting, women have come out speaking that Cosby raped them, all sharing one theme. Cosby drugged them somehow, took advantage of them while they were out and they felt sexually violated in some way. The once famed and beloved comedian morphed into America’s infamous serial rapists in the news, tabloid and social media outlets in a firestorm of accusation after accusation.
Immediately, Cosby was tried and convicted by a court of public opinion. His future plans for a comeback have been virtually demolished. “The Cosby Show” is no longer on the air. And his comedy tour has been scrapped. It’s safe to say that the Cosby legacy is in ruins and possibly unsalvageable.
As expected, this has crossed issues from sexism into racism as people are strongly divided over this scandal. Many people side with the accusers, stating that the culture of rape and sexual assault must be stopped. It is definitely a case in Tinsel Town where it holds many ugly secrets. While others question how could a black man of any status get away with so many rapes during a time when racial overtness was still in style. After all, almost all of the accusers are white women. The ghost of Willie Horton haunts us again like he did with Herman Cain.
But then, you have the ones who suspect that the women are after Cosby’s money as they plan to sue him as oppose to try to put his behind in prison. They question why it took them so long for them to do anything. They wonder why nothing was done to stop this man. In the end, they suspect something’s rotten in Denmark. Conspiracy theories were born from there. One, of which, included a plot to bring down a highly powerful black man as that’s an American no-no.
Those who support Cosby, from what I’ve seen, are mostly black folks. Does that mean something’s wrong with them? Hell no! It just means that they’re no different from the mostly white people who still support Woody Allen, Roman Polanski and the latest embattled white celebrity Stephen Collins who confessed to molesting three girls during his earlier days. So, the message is simply this: if you can support your heroes who obviously have faults, why can’t we, assuming Cosby is guilty? Is it right? No, but who are white people to say they’re experts in ethics and morality in the first place, especially when they’ve violently demanded that we embrace their “civility”? In other words, we learned that shit from them.
It’s one thing to discuss the issue of rape in the Cosby case. It’s another when certain men are singled out for the discussion to be brought. It seems like certain societal problems are never mentioned unless a black person is in the spotlight. Domestic violence was an issue when Chris Brown and Ray Rice were in the news, not Charlie Sheen or Mel Gibson. This is why the issue of sexual assault will be discussed due to Bill Cosby’s alleged actions and not those of Jerry Sandusky or even Jimmy Saville (Google him and be shocked). People should not piggyback off certain celebs while ignoring others when discussing these important topics that involve all who’s guilty.
Some have even said that this scandal helped to influence public opinion on black men during a time when black men are under attack by the police and have been screwed by grand juries. The face of domestic violence has been a black male’s face. The face of thuggery is a black male’s face. And now, thanks to Cosby, the face of rape has – as it has been since slavery – a black male’s face. Race is likely not out of the question in this whole mess.
As we see this scandal unravel with possibly more women coming forward, all we can do is watch Cosby’s pristine image die slowly, but surely. We must not demonize the women, however, as it will be counterproductive. All in all, the lesson is that those we worship are humans with faults and flaws. And it looks like Bill has a lot of them. We are witnessing a slow and painful death that could be the result of a years-long career self-destruction that we’ve ignored far too long.
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