Greetings dear readers!
Trouble rumbles right along in Black paradise…
It came as no surprise to me when Bill Cosby’s wife Camille finally broke her silence and cast dismissive doubt on the mountain of rape charges steadily growing against him. This in light of information I discovered during my 1987 New York trip (shared above in the subject’s opening blog) which offered shocking allegations by those who supposedly witnessed what they called “Cosby’s extremely public indiscretions.”
Claimed also with heavy hearts by these “insider” witnesses was the notion that a very present Camille merely turned a stoic face, stuffing obvious pain and anguish behind a hollow smile on a hardened mask—the same sort of Kewpie Doll like expression she soldiers right along, sitting next to her husband during his recent interviews; hence I expected nothing different.
Now Phylicia Rashad, the TV wife on Cosby’s legendary show (and sister to actress/choreographer Debbie Allen) does the expected; following suit with Camille she finally breaks her own silence, staunchly defending her ex costar.
A few other Black female star “successes” also jump into the fray quite publicly, casting doubt on the slew of female accusers, rigorously defending Cosby’s reputation. Whoopi Goldberg, Vivica Fox and Jill Scott join Camille and Rashad.
What’s become an indignant chorus is reminiscent of a notorious cultural stereotype (the fury of conventionally “super moral” Black females chastising and taking issue). Echoed here is the same cliché: no such behavior was witnessed while they were in his presence, which obviously to them means it must not be possible to carryout upon “someone else.”
Rashad offers a disturbing summation: “This [Cosby Show] was the American family. And now you’re seeing it destroyed. Why?”
Rashad claims that Camille wouldn’t be the “type” to look away and allow such indiscretions; she believes it’s all been orchestrated and at one point the perpetrator (of such a monumental campaign) will be discovered.
If this is true I hope they will be discovered and exposed soon.
But I take issue with the initial rationale of these women on this topic; one very related to the explosive issues that still draw overwhelming silence from most Black “stars.”
First, a contesting of their collective main defense:
Many a person’s violations, transgressions and destructive habits have been discovered (which absolutely were proven to have been carried out right under the noses of intimate friends, or loved ones). The face of this hard core reality makes it highly risky for a defender against heinous allegations to base the strength of their backing on a flimsy idea—the notion that since they never saw it such actions couldn’t exist. It’s purely a knee-jerk denial reaction—and not necessarily “disbelief”—and this could come home to haunt.
The legacy of American culture has women and children being the most viciously exploited all across the board—with people of color taking the absolute brunt. The time period yielding the jest of these rape allegations found female accusers of “standard” males absolutely excoriated; let alone against powerful males which would have their lives and careers totally obliterated.
All of Cosby’s Black female “success story” defenders particularly know this as an unadulterated fact (up close and personal).
Second, the Cosby Show was a myth. Rashad apparently does not know that the Cosby Show’s pristine family imagery is a “myth.”
Yes, successful, moral abiding Black professional families existed long before white TV executives wished to make these (much neglected examples) visible through prime time accessibility—setting rare contrast to white mainstream ideas—proving what Blacks always knew: high achieving Black family units (with entertaining storylines) can reap record breaking TV ratings.
There are skeletons or deeper troubles in everyone’s closet. It is a myth though, to offer the illusion that professionally successful families are void of nasty scandalizing realities. Advocates against rape and all forms of domestic abuse wish to make this living reality crystal clear.
People who believe that their high-octane incomes, inflated moralities and sweet popularity imagery, insulates their units from disturbing behavior court disaster—denial prevents them from seeing what blazes right under their noses.
Third, the way these female “stars” offer unadulterated support for Cosby actually sentences the female accusers to being guilty until proven innocent. Women must fiercely back the cause against rape, reiterating the above: rape absolutely occurs on all class levels (regardless of blissful, high moral surface imagery).
The attack against social oppression begins with the targeted group, aided by those who rally to their cause; high caliber women slamming forthcoming accusers (whose similar descriptions of separate events remain uncanny) and virtually worship a powerful alleged male rapist weakens an already shaky domestic cause—keeping all women (wealthy or not) in terrible risk.
Fourth, I’ve heard not one peep from any of these Black women on the recent police killings of unarmed Black men (and the ruthless police culture vs. people perceived as “poor”) aside from Whoopi as a co-panelist on The View—even there Rosie O’Donnell drums the notion of a greater viciousness aimed at Blacks, stressing “Black lives Matter,” while Whoopi generalizes (diluting Rosie’s critical equation to placate conventional notions).
Phylicia Rashad seems to really reach for solid rational defense on shaky ground, strangely boosting an elite based apologist culture:
Women bravely coming forth and exposing perpetrators of brutal sexual violations against them (regardless of time’s passage) are not destroying America’s families—they help to root out rape’s privileges and bring awareness about its transcendence of all social levels, setting safeguards for others.
Everyone I met in New York was absolutely adamant about the idea that their personally witnessed public scenes (where Cosby allegedly blatantly philanders) found Camille there—feigning obliviousness. How did Rashad miss what failed to escape the entirety of New York?
Interestingly enough, it was her sister Debbie Allen who reproached Spike Lee on Nightline regarding Stephen Spielberg’s (true slave based) 1997 movie Amistad: Lee argued that properly depicted Black history is better done by vested Blacks while Allen (the film’s producer) vociferously claimed that whites could and would transcend typical Hollywood.
Amistad turned out to be a stereotype riddled sensational disappointment. Seventeen years later serious Black based films dodging stereotypical Hollywood have been scant.
Such is the same elite apologist culture: shunning independent Black substance depiction in productions, remaining silent on vicious transgressions against the disenfranchised.
Tragically, it defends the “myth” of Bill Cosby.