I think my favorite gloss on the Bill Cosby story comes from Steven Hayward at Power Line:
I'm skeptical this came out of nowhere, and it would be interesting to find out with whom Burress discussed this subject prior to including it in his act.Right. I'm sure Buress put the bit into his act after lengthy discussions with ... um, George Soros? Valerie Jarrett? Yeah, must be Jarrett. I'm sure she personally wrote the bit, and she was probably the one sitting in the back of that comedy club in Philadelphia illegally taping Buress, because now was the time to deploy the bit (which Buress says he's been doing on and off for six months) in order to distract us all from ... what? Democratic losses in the midterms? Jonathan Gruber? Benghazi?
Writing in The New Republic yesterday, Rebecca Traister says the charges against Cosby, though previously reported, were willfully disregarded because Cosby made white people feel just too good about themselves:Um, let's ignore the fact that Traister is saying that liberals watched Cosby and got the false impression that racism was no longer a problem. She's criticizing liberals.
One reason that we have collectively plugged our ears against a decade of dismal revelations about Bill Cosby is that he made lots of Americans feel good about two things we rarely have reason to feel good about: race and gender...Message received and understood: depart from the liberal party line at your peril.
White people loved "The Cosby Show," especially liberal white people... Any suggestion that white people were culpable in the history of racism that the show addressed mostly through reference to mid-twentieth-century activism. White audiences were never made to feel bad about themselves or confront any hard questions about how they had benefitted from American systems from which black Americans had not benefitted..
But when Cosby began to do his moralizing on race and responsibility, some of the cracks in the show's gender politics were exposed. It became clear that he placed a lot of blame for racial inequality not just on black people, but on black women who were not like Clair Huxtable... This was a brutal language of misogyny, blaming women—women unattached to men—for the social disintegration of the family.
And then consider the timeline she lays out. Hayward wants you to think that Cosby deviated from the party line and then had to be made an unperson by the liberal-fascist Politburo. But when does Traister say Cosby began blaming blacks (and black women in particular) for problems in the black community?
Cosby's infamous "pound cake" speech, delivered in 2004 on the fiftieth anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education decision, was about what he saw as the role of parental inattention in landing so many black young men in jail. He was officially addressing both mothers and fathers, but his gendered judgments got clearer as he demanded, "Where were you when he was two? Where were you when he was 12? Where were you when he was 18, and how come you didn't know that he had a pistol? And where is his father? And why don't you know where he is?" In the same speech, Cosby lamented, "No longer is a person embarrassed because they’re pregnant without a husband," and chided, "Five or six different children, same woman, eight, 10 different husbands or whatever. Pretty soon you're going to have to have DNA cards so you can tell who you're making love to." This was a brutal language of misogyny, blaming women -- women unattached to men -- for the social disintegration of the family.And for this heresy, the left-fascist goon squad cracked down on him ... er, a decade later?
Because the jackbooted thugs of the lefty secret police had a chance to deal with him sooner:
Over the course of the past decade, charges that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted more than a dozen women have been reported in plenty of splashy venues: in Newsweek and Gawker, on-camera on "The Today Show" in 2005; in People magazine in 2006.So: 2004, he sharply criticizes blacks, and black women in particular; 2005 and 2006, allegations of rape arise. Did we disappear him then?
Yet much of this stuff has remained unacknowledged in the context of Cosby celebration. He's received an NAACP Image Award and the Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Award; a year ago, Jon Stewart concluded an interview with Cosby by noting "This man is the best," and this year, upon presenting him with a Lifetime Achievement Award, Chris Rock called him "the greatest comedian to ever live."Gee, I guess not.
I guess we responded to those attacks on Correct Thinking about race by letting him bask in adulation for another ten years, then bringing the hammer down. Because we're fascists, but we're slow fascists. Soros and Jarrett took a while to give us the go-ahead.