The world has recently witnessed several alleged rape victims of the beloved Bill Cosby come forward. When incidents such as these happen, the world takes a pause and evaluates who is telling the truth. It becomes a simple battle of media coverage and who can tell the most believable story. Most recently, supermodel Janice Dickinson has been openly accusing the actor of rape in several interviews. Dickinson is only one of over a dozen women speaking out against the actor. The actor himself is speaking volumes with his silence to those who want to fill in the blanks for him.
The story draws out to a long ongoing battle with more participants at every turn. Like every star, Cosby is open for extreme scrutiny when allegations such as rape come to light. Due to this, stand-up routines from the 1960s are being analyzed to see if the star was speaking on the matter outright. In his 1969 album It’s True! It’s True! Cosby recounts his seemingly humorous story of Spanish Fly, which talks about the use and effect of drugs on women. While this piece of history does not condemn him as a rapist, it does not help his situation at the moment. How this situation is being handled altogether comes into question again as Cosby refuses to respond to allegations in several interviews including with the Associated Press and NPR. The Associated Press has released a video interview showing him responding to questions about the alleged rapes with “No, no, we don’t answer that.”
There is a glut of material out at the moment, and a person could spend hours reading reviews, comments, and opinion articles on the subject. Many are asking the question, “If this is true, why would you wait so long to testify?” In not speaking and keeping his silence, Cosby has allowed volumes of unanswered questions to run rampant. Cosby has been to court previously for these allegations and has never been convicted due to lack of evidence or a rape kit. It has been said that with every story comes rumor, and every rumor rings a bell of truth. Rumors that the Cosby Show’s childhood star Raven Symoné was molested by the actor as a child began to run wild as more women have come forward. Symoné released a statement vehemently protesting these allegations on her behalf stating “I was NOT taken advantage of by Mr. Cosby when I was on the Cosby Show! I was practically a baby on that show and this is truly a disgusting rumor that I want no part of! Everyone on that show treated me with nothing but kindness. Now keep me out of this!” The opinionated comments on this Instagram post vary significantly to the point of causing fevered arguments.
The answers will come to the surface on this matter with time. At the moment, it has yet to be determined whether this is a publicity stunt or many years of rape and abuse finally coming out. Either way, these women speaking out and his silence on the matter have already had dire consequences for Cosby, not the least of which is the volume of financial hits he will take from the removal of current and future projects from broadcast television. NBC has dropped a new television project featuring the actor, TV Land has cancelled the re-runs of The Cosby Show, and Netflix has chosen not to run the birthday comedy special scheduled to publish next week for the actors 77th birthday.
By Ashlee Smith
Image courtesy of World Affairs Council – Flickr License