Thursday, November 20, 2014
The sins of Bill Cosby: I'd rather stay ignorant
By now, we've all heard of the allegations against Bill Cosby. Although it's not a new story (apparently, the first accusations came to light back in 2006), public attention has only lately become focused. The charges are that Bill Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted multiple women throughout his career.
In response, NBC has cancelled a planned sitcom featuring the 77-year-old comedian, and Netflix has put on hold a comedy special, originally planned to air on Thanksgiving Day. Cosby hasn't helped himself at all. He's refused any comment and just yesterday, tried to intimidate a reporter into scuttling any mention of the issue in an interview.
The whole thing sickens me. If the allegations are true (and, given the number of women coming forward, and the consistency of their stories, it seems likely) Bill Cosby would not be the first hero to fall. But unlike Joe Paterno, a football coach (I know a thing or two about football coaches), or Michael Jackson, who was out-of-touch crazy, Bill Cosby, or rather the myth of Bill Cosby, was so beloved and unstained and such an integral part of my childhood that these allegations wound me to my core.
Sexual assault is a heinous crime. Perpetrators deserve reprobation, at the very least; criminal prosecution, ideally. If the allegations against Bill Cosby are true, he must pay with his reputation, his career, and whatever justice our legal system can mete out.
But I don't want to know the details. I know too much already. Let it play out as it must. I don't want to know any more about it.
Mine is not a courageous stand. In fact, it's cowardly and hypocritical. I admit it.
But I just can't bring myself to take part in the destruction of the beloved myth. The myth of Bill Cosby.
I'd rather stay ignorant.