Media attention around Bill Cosby’s fondness for drugging/raping women might be fading, but it’s not going away. Yet Woody Allen just scored a new show, despite longstanding claims of raping children from his own family. As pundits ponder why Cosby is nose-diving whilst Allen and countless others keep chugging along, it’s time to once and for all settle the question of why Cosby’s career really tumbled…
[Content note for rape]
During their opening monologue at the Golden Globes last night, hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler went there: They went straight in with a series of very direct jokes about the rape allegations against Bill Cosby.
[Strong trigger warnings for rape]
Jesus. This again.
Recently, in a comedy routine, stand-up comedian Hannibal Buress brought up a fact that has largely been ignored over the past eight years: that Bill Cosby has been accused of drugging and raping multiple women. Among them is Joan Tarshis, whose story of two encounters — and not just one — has some people bringing up that familiar, reprehensible speculation that of course she brought it on herself, or else she’s lying.
So. “Beyonce feminism.” Roxane Gay is against it. (Annie Lennox, too.)
What is the famous song “Strange Fruit,” by Abel Meeropol, a New York Jewish communist schoolteacher, and most famously performed by Billie Holiday, the immensely influential and important black singer, about? Lynching. It’s about lynching. It’s about whites lynching black…
Just two of the latest incidents: a Black actress kissing her White husband in front of her CBS workplace detained on suspicion of prostitution, and a Black man shot repeatedly in the back by police after buying a souvenir samurai sword.
The people sharing these images are perpetuating an ongoing assault. The people gleefully looking at them are witnessing and enjoying an ongoing assault. When you have been asked by victims of a crime like this not to exacerbate the pain of that crime and you continue to do so anyway, you are consciously deciding that your enjoyment, your rights and perhaps even just your curiosity are more important than the safety and dignity of the people you’re exploiting.
[Content note: Suicide and mental illness]
Yesterday, after a long battle with depression, Robin Williams took his own life. He left behind a family that loved him dearly and a legion of fans who loved having someone to make them laugh and cry and think, even as he himself was so frequently in a dark place. He made kids’ movies with jokes that only adults would get, he made movies for adults that made you forget he was the genie from Aladdin, he made a few zany comedies that possibly made you stupider just by watching them but were so entertaining that who cares, and he made people feel better. He gave joy.
[Trigger warning for transphobia]
Unfunny comedian and walking Halloween decoration [update: See in comments where I regret writing that part] Joan Rivers took a completely random opportunity this week to throw transphobic slurs at Michelle Obama. Asked by a reporter, for some reason, whether we’ll ever see a gay president, she replied, “We already have it with Obama, so let’s calm down.” This was, she elaborated without prompting, because “You know Michelle is a [transphobic slur redacted]. A transgender. We all know.”
I have just one comment: LUPITA! And her speech. Now talk about whatever other Oscars-related stuff you want.
In 2006, Bill Cosby was accused of raping several women in assaults that go back to the 70s. Tom Scocca at Gawker has the story. Weirdly, I have absolutely no recollection of these accusations being published in People magazine and discussed on the Today show.
Dylan Farrow, the daughter of Woody Allen, speaks out about charges that he sexually assaulted her when she was a kid. [TW for, as you might suspect, sexual assault].