I need to say this for many reasons and they are by no means offered to justify or otherwise forget what Bill Cosby may be guilty of among the many accusations and now charges that have been filed against him.
But I am curious! Are Bill Cosby’s jokes any less funny now that we have been made aware of his faults and failures? Can we no longer laugh at the hilarious stories he has told to entertain thousands across the land? Did we not feel something good from the clean and non-profane gestures, faces, and one-liners that brought smiles and joy to our hearts? Can we in no way now relate to the common stories of family life that we could say, ‘yeah, I’ve done that,’ and then laugh at him and ourselves?
Does the Cosby Show not carry any moral influence or weight as modeling family values? Now that we all know, do we all agree that the long running and popular family show we all watched and loved without filtering has no value to us or the current generation? Surely there is something to learn that will influence some positive outcomes to children and parents when watching Cosby! And why haven’t other shows whose stars have been found guilty of heinous crimes, faults and failures been met with cancellation?
What about his money? Is it not still green or does it spend well knowing of his improprieties? Do the benefits gained from donations mean nothing now . . . Or, has anyone returned his ‘tainted’ money now that we know ‘the whole truth?” Should students return their diplomas, or institutions their scholarship funds, endowments or buildings resulting from his donations?
Should foundations, corporation boards, committees, etc. retract every suggestion, proposal, idea, or influence Dr. Cosby may have contributed toward improving their values, performance, policies, product or presentation? Surely, if this man is as evil as he is now purported to be, there should be no hint of him or his thought and absolutely no gain to any he may have assisted or worked with in some way.
Is he guiltier than the rest of us and therefore doomed to condemnation without any thought of mercy or forgiveness? The rest of us, who may not be guilty of executing such horrendous crimes against women, but perhaps used charm, deceit, manipulation, or by some other means achieved the same results, are we less guilty? What about the ones of us who thought about these things but lacked the wherewithal or means to actually carry out the thought?
And what about the rest of us? Now that we all know, have we become so righteous and without fault or sin that we can erase everything there is to know or recall of Bill Cosby? Do we all look better in the light of this news about Bill Cosby? Instead of a ‘scarlet letter,’ shall we act now as though he never lived and made any difference while he lived? Maybe we ought to ask, ‘are you a Cosby unknown?’ What are we all hiding from view of the world to see? Can we so easily shut down an entire human experience without any thought of ourselves? Surely not?!
I don’t know if Mr. Cosby is guilty or innocent! I do know of my own failures (as you know your own) . . . and we all need mercy. Especially now, that time has accumulated a great number of failures over the years. Somebody needs to write on the ground for a few moments to give time for reasonable and rational consideration to take place on the thought, ‘he that is without sin, cast the first stone.’ The eldest of us may lead a caravan away from this court of condemnation!