Members of Black Leadership Group Say U.S. District Court Judge Was Wrong to Release Transcript of Deposition in a Cosby Civil Case Explicitly Because Cosby Gave a 2005 Speech in Telling Young Black Parents to do a Better Job Raising Their Children
WASHINGTON, DC -- Members of the Project 21 black conservative leadership network are weighing in following news that documents in a civil case related to allegations that Bill Cosby molested a Temple University employee were made public by a U.S. district court judge specifically because Dr. Cosby has publicly criticized the way many black parents rear their children.
"I'm talking about these people who cry when their son is standing there in an orange suit. Where were you when he was two?" Cosby famously said in 2005 in what has become known as the "Pound Cake" speech. "Where were you when he was twelve? Where were you when he was eighteen, and how come you don't know he had a pistol? And where is his father, and why don't you know where he is? And why doesn't the father show up to talk to this boy?"
"50 percent drop out rate, I'm telling you, and people in jail, and women having children by five, six different men," Cosby continued in 2005. "Under what excuse, I want somebody to love me, and as soon as you have it, you forget to parent. Grandmother, mother, and great grandmother in the same room, raising children, and the child knows nothing about love or respect of any one of the three of them. All this child knows is 'gimme, gimme, gimme.' These people want to buy the friendship of a child... and the child couldn't care less. Those of us sitting out here who have gone on to some college or whatever we've done, we still fear our parents. And these people are not parenting. They're buying things for the kid. $500 sneakers, for what? They won't buy or spend $250 on Hooked on Phonics."
Project 21 members say the law should not treat Cosby differently because he gave that speech.
"Bill Cosby should be vilified and, if possible, prosecuted if he used Quaaludes and perhaps other drugs to facilitate rape," said Project 21 member Deroy Murdock, a New York-based columnist. "His decades-long reputation as a popular entertainer should not shield him from the consequences of his actions."
"But Cosby's role as a 'public moralist' with views on 'childrearing, family life, education, and crime,' as U.S. District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno described him, should have played no role in Robreno's recent decision to publicize Cosby's deposition in an alleged sexual-molestation case," Murdock added. "This transcript should have stayed sealed or been unsealed solely for legal reasons, not due to Cosby's beliefs about any issue beyond this case. Americans should be free to express themselves without fearing that their views will be used later to justify breaching confidential documents in what resembles political score settling by federal judges."
"This ruling is appalling," said Horace Cooper, an attorney, former counsel to a U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader, and co-chairman of Project 21. "A decision to unseal documents is a weighty one and should only occur under exceptional circumstances - circumstances that have nothing to do with the popularity (or lack thereof) of one of the litigating parties."
"My father was born in to a very different world than the one I live in today. He was a black Roman Catholic who was born in 1925 in Sumter, SC. He also spent 20 years as a policeman. As a youth he repeatedly saw the rights and privileges of individuals blatantly and furtively ignored. One of the lessons he drummed into me and my brothers was the importance of knowing the law and the rules so than no one can take advantage of you," said the Most Rev. Council Nedd II, PhD, DHum, Bishop and Rector, St. Alban's Anglican Church, Pine Grove Mills, PA.
"What we have seen over the last year is Bill Cosby repeatedly attacked and tried in the media. Without commenting on the allegations against Dr. Cosby, or the credibility of the accusers, based on the fact that none of the accusers, seen on the variety of news and talk shows, saw fit to push for criminal charges when the events occurred, tells me that they made a personal and calculated decision to live with whatever transpired. To me it seems opportunistic to seek media headlines now."
"What the judge did in this case is as morally reprehensible as SCOTUS deciding to ignore the constitution on the gay marriage issue. The judge releasing those sealed documents is pandering to the media, akin to Justice Robert's decision in the Obamacare ruling, and Charleston County Magistrate James Gosnell, Jr.'s very odd speech at the arraignment of Dylann Roof," Bishop Nedd added.
Project 21, a leading voice of black conservatives for over two decades, is sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research (http://www.nationalcenter.org).