On September 25, 2018, Bill Cosby was sentenced to 3 to 10 years in prison by a judge in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania for sexual assault. He apparently drugged and raped a young basketball coordinator of Temple University back in 2004. He was convicted after a second trial was conducted in April of this year.
Andrea Constand was one of about 60 women who accused Cosby of sexual abuse. She seems to be the only one likely to see her abuser receive the criminal conviction.
I have to admit that I rather liked Cosby’s act for the most part. I enjoyed “The Cosby Show” generally. Fortunately, I wasn’t a rabid die-hard fan, but I respected his talent and his messages. I did enjoy his live stand-up performance at West Texas A&M once. This particular fall from grace won’t likely plague my conscience very much, but he was an important part of American entertainment for a very long time.
I liked Cosby well enough to want to believe in his innocence when the allegations first started coming out in more detail after fellow comedian Hannibal Buress referenced the misdeeds in a stand-up comedy routine in 2014. Unfortunately, my hopes were disintegrating as more women came forward, and then I heard about the deposition that was taken in 2005 where Cosby admitted to the use of Quaaludes as a means of engaging in what he called casual sex. This was during a civil suit that had been filed by Constand around 2005.
Although I applaud the courage it took for these women to come forward and for the prosecutors to pull the case together to finally get a conviction that really seems to have been deserved, I am still saddened by the wreckage of an accomplished career all because Cosby never bothered to reign in his darker impulses. It appears he never tried. He just ended up likely adding to the cynicism and despair that many people try to escape from through entertainment and comedy. Cosby had some good solid messages and ideas regarding personal responsibility as well. All of that means nothing now. The messages themselves may still carry some validity, but this particular messenger is damaged goods, which is putting it lightly.
Victims of sexual abuse getting justice in court should be celebrated. I think Constand does deserve this victory. Even though I believe Cosby deserving of his downfall, I still can’t quite shake the sadness that is blended into that belief.
I also want to applaud the police and prosecutors in the State of Pennsylvania for finding enough probable cause to secure an indictment and ultimate conviction, which was probably not that easy to pull off since so much time had passed since the crime was committed. Even if I am not exactly jumping for joy over this outcome for Cosby, neither am I critical of it. Cosby needed to be held accountable.