Monday, September 19, 2016


That Bill Cosby drugged and raped women for sport for many years is not new news. Apparently, the story has floated for years...[Once] a Black male comedian Hannibal Burress ...had the courage to take Cosby to task for his conservative, anti-poor, misogynist respectability rants, people [started] listening again.  

It sucks that folks only believe women were really raped when another man says he believes them, but this demonstrates the importance of male allies. Just last week my intro women’s and gender studies students and I talked about what it means for men to participate in ending rape.

Cliff Huxtable’s progressive gender politics and the show’s overt rhetoric of anti-sexism has struck me in my adult years as decidedly progressive for the time. But it’s a sham. How can a man who is a vicious hater of women get all the rhetoric right, offering up an idealistic view of what a “good, feminist family man,” might look like? It turns out that dudes, or their carefully crafted representatives, can sound right, and seem right, and still be all the way wrong.

It turns out that you can have progressive feminist politics on the outside and still be deeply emotionally damaged and f***ed up on the inside.

And since Bill Cosby is a rapist, his avatar Cliff Huxtable is a representational terrorist, holding us hostage to a Black family that never was. But let him die. Stockholm Syndrome be damned.

I’m reminded of a couple of moments that always struck me as creepy – after Denise got married, Cliff’s character felt compelled to have a conversation with Martin about whether she had been a virgin on their wedding night. Martin assured Cliff that she was “inexperienced.” And on another episode when Vanessa got caught sneaking out...

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