All Articles Tagged "Bill Cosby"
“Reject The Slander That Says A Black Child With A Book Is Trying To Act White” The Best Celebrity Commencement Speakers
It’s a wonderful time of the year for college students around the nation. With young adults bidding farewell to frat parties, all-nighters and general recklessness, students are gearing up for one final hurrah: Graduation. So now seems as good a time as ever to take a look back at our favorite celebrity commencement speakers whose words we have no doubt will stick with these grads throughout the years.
There is nothing that can hurt a person’s career quite like an assault charge, or even an allegation. It doesn’t give them street credit but rather a case that can lead to high fines, probation and even jail time. Here’s a look at 10 celebrities who have been charged or accused of assault-related crimes.
Bill Cosby isn’t as stuffy as you might have imagined. The 76-year-old comedian/actor/orator of wisdom already has a Twitter account (he only follows six people) and now he has joined Instagram.
He uploaded his first post Monday at South by Southwest (SXSW), just minutes before he performed his standup show for Funny or Die, reports Mashable. Facebook’s Strategic Partner Development, Entertainment exec Dustin Bramell recorded and posted the video with Cosby.
Cosby was already a Twitter fan, having recently tweeted “Twitter is the best fan-to-entertainer exchange I’ve ever had.” And he already seems hooked by Instagram. He told Mashable that Instagram will help him respond and relay things to fans faster.
“All of it seems to take away from old-time mail service … Now everything is 15 seconds,” he said. “I’m entertained by all the nicknames” like “Trash642.” LOL.
Who knew Cliff Huxtable was so tech happy?
In the wake of the renewed interest in both the R Kelly and Woody Allen sexual abuse allegations, comes a second look at similar allegations against America’s favorite television dad, Bill Cosby.
For the most part, the allegations that Cosby drugged and then sexually assaulted 13 women in the 70s and then again in the 90s, as well as settled a lawsuit against one of his alleged victims has been quietly swept under the rug. For those needing more detail, you can check out The Smoking Gun’s timeline of Cosby’s alleged “prior bad acts.” So goes the age before social media. However, a couple of weeks ago, Newsweek (likely inspired by this piece on Gawker) spoke to Tamara Green, one of those 13 accusers, who said that Cosby assaulted her in the 1970s. Of the alleged incident, she said:
“He asked me to help him raise capital for a club he wanted to start. One day, I called him to cancel a meeting because I was feeling really sick, and he said, “Why don’t you come over to this restaurant I’m at, you’ll feel better if you have lunch.” I sat down, and he gave me what he said was two pills of [an over-the-counter cold medicine]. I swallowed them, and 20 minutes later I felt terrific; 30 minutes later, I was face-down in my soup. He volunteered to take me home. And then, because I was so ill, he volunteered to undress me and put me to bed. I started fighting him — I took a lamp and broke a window. He finally left. When I woke up, I saw that he left two 100-dollar bills on the table next to my front door. I was so sincerely and deeply infuriated that, even through the drugs…. I was crazed. I wanted to rip his neck off.”
Getting ahead of speculation that Green might be trying to gain something by accusing Cosby of sexual assault, she asserts that she only came forward to support the first accuser, who was being vilified in the press. And that her own life has not been great since coming forth, calling the whole experience a “career-ender.” Nevertheless, a week after speaking with Newsweek, another woman, 46 year old artist named Barbara Bowman, has also gone on record with Newsweek about her allegations that Cosby “repeatedly emotionally and physically abused her” as a teenager. She alleges:
“None of the abuse or drugging happened until I was 18… But on our very first meeting together, which occurred in the conference room at a nightclub in Denver, he led me through an acting exercise. First, he told me to go to the bathroom and wet my hair down. Then, he told me to sit in a chair, close my eyes, and act out a monologue as if I was really intoxicated. And he was touching my neck and stroking my hair.I was assaulted a number of times from age 18 to 19. Cosby would warn me before out-of-town trips, “You aren’t going to fight me this time, are you?“
Bowman said the fear of career repercussions is what held her back from speaking up early and even cites being laughed out of a lawyer’s office once she told him who her alleged abuser was. However just like Green, Bowman tells Newsweek that she was encouraged by the first alleged victim’s tale, citing: “My only motivation was to support Andrea; my statute of limitations had long run out. There was nothing in it for me monetarily. It was strictly to have my voice heard and my story told.”
This is the kind of story that I don’t want to believe. We are talking about the guy, who played Dr. Huxtable. The man, who once gave Rudy and her friends (including a very young and androgynous- looking Alicia Keys) pony rides on his lap. A guy, who wooed us with individually wrapped cups of savory chocolate pudding and glued us to the television with his animated tales of “Fat Albert and the Gang.” Quite frankly, who the hell wants to believe that the Cos is straight out of central casting for “Law & Order: SVU”?
You should always respect your elders but what do you do when your elders don’t appear to respect you?
Like Patti LaBelle. I love Patti [in my Sophia from the Color Purple's voice], Lord knows I do, but she ain’t have to call them young girls “lil’ heifers.
I mean I get her point: there are lots of non-serious singers out in today’s musical landscape, dazzlings us with David Blaine-style jazz-hands while sing-talking tunes in the key of off. Those folks should really consider f the real greats in the game before daring to attach themselves to the moniker of “diva.” But why does it matter, who calls themselves a diva, especially in light of a willing audience, who doesn’t seem to mind? Words evolve including diva, which used to only apply to those in the actual Opera theaters.
And it is not just LaBelle. Harry Belafonte called out Jay-Z and Beyoncé over their lack of damns given about social responsibility, unlike the black artists of past. The late and great Jazz Singer Etta James threatened to lay them paws on Beyoncé over daring to sing her song while she was still alive. And then there is Bill Cosby, who seems to have issues with us all. Granted they all have legitimate and worthwhile points, which probably should be heeded. But is it fair to put the younger generation publicly on blast like that? Or are these elders just exhibiting bad cases of Get Off My Lawn-ism?
The whole thing reminds me of my younger years working the polls. No not “the pole.” But the elections polls, where people go to vote for public offices like Mayor and the President. Anyway, I was a clerk and my job was to sign voters into a secondary registry. For the most part it was a simple enough task. My coworkers were all older ladies, well into their 60s and 70s. They were nice, entertaining and very resourceful, often coming to work the polls with plastic shopping bags full of enough snacks, puzzles, pocket radio and other comforts to share with us all. But their niceness often came with stipulations and under conditions that I’d listen and follow their every instruction. No deviation.
This included the way in which I’d sign in voters. My preference was to find voters names and sign them into the official records. However my coworker, also the judge of election, thought I was doing it wrong. “You’re supposed to wait until people sign my book first before you write their names in your book,” she ordered. I side-eyed her suspiciously. There was really no added benefit to doing it either way – it just meant that people would sign her book first, thus maintaining the hierarchy. It was silly but I obliged. It was from my own relationship with my grandmother, which taught me respect for my elders.
That all changed during the 2008 presidential election when I was assigned the task of signing people into the main registry, which just so happens to be the judge of election’s job. The turnout for the election was heavier than usual (most days I had times to read an entire book during the downtimes of voters coming in to exercise their civil duties #Message). It seems that the years had finally caught up with her and she couldn’t find names as fast as she used too. Folks were complaining and threatening to call the Committee of Seventy on us. The ward thought that new, fresher blood on the main registry book would help speed up the process a bit. And it did. However it brought unnecessary tension “You think you are just going to sit down here and start doing the job I’ve been doing for 30 years… ” I found out that day, old ladies do not shade. They tell you straight up what is – and is not– about to happen. I tried to assure the judge of election that I wasn’t trying to take anything. That I was just trying to help but she had her mind already made up. And so did the other older ladies, who joined in on giving me the cold shoulder – as well as denying me access to their snacks and puzzle games – for the rest of the day.
I share this hopefully amusing story to illustrate how complicated intergenerational relationships can be. While it is true that young people do not always show reverence for our elders and their traditions, it is also true that the elders can sometimes be heavy handed – if not flat-out wrong – about the younger generations too. And sometimes their years of experience and wisdom is clouded by prejudice, fear and a bit of unresolved bitterness. I’m not saying this is the case for LaBelle, or Belafonte or even the judge of election but I am saying that the elders do need to allow younger folks the space to not only follow the paths they laid but blaze new trails of their own. I mean, what good is being young if you have no confidence and ambition?
Have you been missing the goodness of the now legendary “Cosby Show”? Well, it looks like there might be a worthy substitute coming your way. According to Deadline.com, 30 years later, Cosby is gearing up to bring another family-style show to the air. Apparently NBC has been struggling to produce enough comedies so the network made a deal for a 30-minute family comedy with Cosby, who is working with the same producer of the “Cosby show,” Tom Werner.
In the new show, Cosby will play the patriarch of a multigenerational family, and like his original sitcoms, the new show will focus on Cosby’s take on marriage and parenting. Cosby and Werner are still meeting with writers for the show which has been placed on an off-season development track.
This idea is nothing new. Cosby has said he’s been thinking about bringing a family comedy back to the small screen for years now. This past November, Cosby told Yahoo, “They would like to see a married couple that acts like they love each other, warts and all, children who respect the parenting, and the comedy of people who make mistakes. Warmth and forgiveness. So I hope to get that opportunity, and I will deliver the best of Cosby.”
Will you be watching this new show?
We may know them for their television or film roles or even as a star athlete but did you know these 15 celebrities actually pursued another career as rappers and singers before they achieved fame for their better known talents? Luckily, none of them quit their day job.
Romany Malco, Jr.
Before Romany Malco, Jr. became an actor, he tried his hand at rapping. After graduating from high school, the former “Weeds” star formed a rap group called College Boyz with his buddies and relocated from New York to California to follow his dreams to become a rap star. The group landed a record deal with Virgin Records and had a local hit with “Victim of the Ghetto.” Malco is falsely credited for doing the raps for animated MC Skat Cat in “Opposites Attract” with Paula Abdul. Malco did however pen the lyrics for the animated rapper.
Update: Bill Cosby delivered the keynote address at this weekend’s Tuskegee University Homecoming and Charter Day Convocation, using James Brown’s hit song “Get Up” as a rallying cry for his audience. And according to a press release sent our way this morning, he also encouraged the audience to steer clear of being the “perpetual victim who blames a ‘mythical white man’ for their inaction.”
He said black American culture is under attack by people who wish to make money off of it. He said the culture has become riddled with negative images and activities, which are in opposition to its foundation of hard work, pride and determination. He also encouraged having respect for black women and rejecting obscenity.
With tighter regulations on student loans impacting the ways in which parents finance their kid’s college costs, HBCUs have been dealing with a drop in enrollment. So everyone’s favorite funky sweater-wearin’ TV dad, Bill Cosby, has come to the rescue! In support of Tuskegee University, Cosby is holding fundraiser that includes taking photos with the iconic sitcom star.
For a $5,000 donation, the contributor will not only be able to capture a Kodak moment with Cosby, but he or she can also grab some lunch with Dr. Huxtable and receive a special donor’s gift. Cosby’s philanthropic efforts, called “Conversation with Cosby,” will benefit Tuskegee’s “Programmed for Excellence” – a campaign that seeks to raise $250 million over the next five years for the university’s enhancement.
“Cosby has a long history of supporting historically black colleges and universities and is honorary co-chair for Tuskegee’s capital campaign,” a press release stated. Continuing his pledge to HBCUs, Cosby will be the keynote speaker for Tuskegee’s Homecoming/Charter Day Convocation on Nov. 3. The beloved comedian will begin the address at 9:30 AM CST in the Gen. Daniel “Chappie” James Arena. The cost to attend the event is free. However, if you’re feeling a bit gratuitous, make your way over to The Legacy Museum at 11:30am to drop $5,000 for a rendezvous with the American legend.
Cosby has been known to burst through the racial glass ceiling as the first African American co-star on I Spy, a 1965 TV series. He was the first Black actor to not only take a lead role, but “win three consecutive Emmys for ‘Outstanding Lead Actor’ in the dramatic series,” a press release adds. While Cosby has captivated several generations through his comedy, his most notable work lies in The Cosby Show, a sitcom that uplifted the perspective of the American Black family. Unsurprisingly, The Cosby Show was No. 1 for years and earned nearly “unanimous critical praise.”
It was July when CNN anchor Don Lemon was scolded by many black folks in the media and on social media for his Five Ways To Improve The Black Community that in some ways he felt would have an impact on the racism we face. To be “scolded” might be an understatement though, as he was literally called everything but a child of God. But Lemon stood by his list of changes and felt that they were common sense. Either way though, his points fell on many deaf and angry ears.
So maybe that’s why he decided to interview Bill Cosby this past weekend as many were remembering the infamous Birmingham Church bombing that killed four little girls now that 50 years has passed. The conversation wasn’t really much about that event though, but about the state of the black community now, which is something Bill Cosby has been very vocal about in the past few years. In his sit-down with Lemon, Cosby talked about everything from the imprisonment of our young men, fathers stepping up to the plate, the importance of education, and why he thinks some black people get so riled up when famous folks try to suggest ways to fix the community–he calls them “No-groes”:
His thoughts on black fathers:
“I think women…when you see the 70%, in research, that says they are the leaders of the household, then what we need is for people to realize, ‘I want to raise my kid. I want to go back and get my three kids. I want to take on that responsibility. I want to love my children.’ One of the great pictures that reaches me, because it is special, is to go to the Essence Festival and walk around to see a black male with his child on his shoulders…that means something…It’s not difficult to do [to be a father] and you don’t have to jump up one day, you can ease yourself into it.”
The importance of education:
“Of course we have great things happening. Graduates of the naval academy, the military academy, graduates of all kind of Morehouse, Miles and colleges like that, but by the same token we also need people to go to community college. Okay, so you backed up and you didn’t do well. You quit school but now you find you need that high school credential. Go to the community colleges. Just go and sit there and understand that you’re going to get an education, because that’s what happened to me. At age 19 and a half, I just knew that I didn’t want to do certain things and it wasn’t what they were doing to me, it was what I was doing. It’s a very simple thing.”
Why drugging up some young men in prison isn’t going to help them when they get out:
“Our criminal justice system in terms of our young people…If you drug these people, and then you release them, and there’s no prescription for them to get to take to do the same thing, they go back to the same place.”
The idea of “No-groes,” folks who don’t like to hear about what needs to change:
“Now, about this time, this is when you hear the no-groes jump and say, ‘Why don’t you talk about good things?’ Because the good things happen to be taking care of themselves pretty well. We are trying to help those genius’, those not genius’, people who deserve, because they are human beings on this earth, in the United States of America, we are trying to get them in a position so they will understand and want to.
The reason why I’m giving you this information is because I was living in the projects. I was not taking care of myself in terms of managing my education, and once the door opened and I saw quote, unquote, the light, I started to become very successful.”
He makes some interesting points, but what do you think?
From Black Enterprise
In 1958, newlyweds Ben and Virginia Ali used $5,000 to begin renovating a building at 1213 U Street. Built in 1910, it first housed a silent movie house called the Minnehaha Theater. Later, Harry Beckley, one of D.C.’s first black police detectives, converted it into a pool hall.
On August 22, 1958, Ben’s Chili Bowl opened for business. And 55 years later, the bowl is still going strong.
To mark their 55th anniversary, special invited guest Bill Cosby will speak at Thursday’s celebration, which kicks off at 10 a.m. This is not the first time the comedian has worked with the restaurant. Cosby’s voice can currently be heard on the voice mail greeting of the restaurant.
According to the Washington Post, the range of A-listers who have stopped by Ben’s is impressive. Actors Denzel Washington and Chris Tucker, and former French president Nicolas Sarkozy have visited the restaurant. In the early days, according to Ben’s, guests included Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Miles Davis and even Martin Luther King Jr.
Read more at BlackEnterprise.com