Bill Cosby, Part 2 : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

By now, you may have heard that Bill Cosby added to the "controversial" statements he made on May 17. Here are some URLs so that you may see what he said; I am going to give you the highlights:


The question goes out to the community? What is our next move?

I think we need to begin to prove him wrong. Please re-read those words. It is time for the church community to reverse the trend that Bill sees. If the parents won't do it, and the schools can't do it, and the police don't care, it is up to all of us, in whatever capacity we have, to step up and fix this problem.

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004


Rev. Harper, Thank you for your comments. I do agree with most of the comments by Bill Cosby in that parents will eith buy or give their children hundreds of dollars for sneakers and clothes and yet will not take five dollars to give to the PTA or even use that five dollars for gas to go to school board meetings and their children schools to see what is going on with the education of their child.

We allow our young girls and guys to dress like street walkers and thugs and wonder why they are held in suspect. We have arrived to the point where pride in who we are has gone out the door.

Just my opinion. Katherine Thompson

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

Mr. Cosby has gone overboard with is comments. White people are now using his attack on his own race to claim we are second class citizens. If there is a problem we should try to begin fixing it before we try to humilate our children. Everyday these children face untold barriers becauwe of what comes out of our mouths. If you arent a part of the solution, save your attacks.

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

Mr. Cosby is absolutely correct and something has to be done now. We cannot afford to accept certain negativebehaviors within our community. It makes my blood chill when I hear some of our young people speak. Many have no respect for anyone. On the other hand the white media does use this against the African American community. We all suffer their negative criticism. Mr. Cosby does give back to the community. I believe sometimes we must listen to things that we do not want to hear. My prayer is this will cause change and make us stronger.

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

What do you mean "If" there is a problem? Open your eyes.

We've had a chance to do something. We've chosen, for the most part, to do nothing.

So let's ask some simple questions. Don't post the answers here, but write them down and take a hard look at them:

How is your child doing in school? If they are failing, what are you doing to help? Are you paying for a tutor? Are you giving up your valuable time to help? Or are you blaming the teacher? Are you checking your child's homework before they go to school?

Do you have a computer in your home so your child can increase their learning?

Do you have a video game system (PS/2, XBOX, etc)?

How many pairs of shoes does your child have? What is the cost of those shoes?

How many books do you have in your home? How many of them are religious? adventure? classic? romance? science fiction? fairy tales? technical?

Does your child know how to use a library? Do you?

Does your child have a cell phone? A PDA?

Does your child have a quiet place to study? (If they don't, why? Shouldn't your home have a quiet place to pray?)

Why do I ask these questions?

You can buy a PC with software for about $600-$700 dollars. Your child can learn programming, graphics design, networking, reading, math, the Bible, a foreign language, and typing. Any one of those skills can return tens of THOUSANDS of dollars.

A $250 pair of basketball shoes does not make you a better player. It makes Nike richer. It makes Rebook richer. It doesn't out a dime in our community.

A video game system does nothing more than teach your child how to cheat (there are magazines devoted to revealing the cheat codes to get an advantage ocer your opponent), and actually increases their aggression. It can cause repetitive stress syndrome, and takes away from time better spent learning and going outside to explore the real world.

A cell phone is nice for emergencies, but your children aren't using it for that. Same with the Cell phone/PDAs.

Now if you are one of those parents who is taking care of business, praise the Lord! Stand up and be counted. If you are one of the ones Bill was talking about, it's time to stop pretending there isn't a problem, swallow your pride and get it together.

And, for the record, my parents grew up in the Depression. They didn't have a lot of money when I grew up. The most imporant thing they taught me was this: God first, Education Second, everything else will fall into place. The next most imporant thing was this: There is always someone smarter and faster. You can't rest on what you have done. Keep moving.

These were taught to me at age 6.

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

I am so proud of Bill Cosby I could just spit! I've been preaching that same thing for 40+ years; ostracised by my brothers and sisters; etc. But Ive never stopped speaking and I hope Bill keeps it up too. I would say that roughly 40% of black folk feel the same way; and 90% of black folk over 60 agree with him. But many of us are afraid to speak out because of pressure from our brothers and sisters. YOU GO Bill, I'm with you 100%.

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

I think I agree with most of you. And since Dr. Cosby is (and has been for 40 years) my favorite entertainer, I appreciate the essence of his comments. Here are some additional thoughts:

-- Anonymous, July 02, 2004

All I can say is a hearty AMEN to all that has been said. We as black people have been propagandized to have a victims mentality by those who have assumed the mantle of being the spokes persons for the black community. Lets stop blaming the white man for all of our ills and start taking responsibility for our actions and our future.

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

Brothers and Sisters,

Do any of you resemble any of the comments that Mr. Cosby has made about black folk? Do you personally know any black folk who fall into these generalizations? Now it may be true that I live a rather sheltered, bourgeois life, since I only know of such persons - directly - from what I see on T.V. My colleagues, the brothers and sisters at church, my family, nor my friends fit any of the characterizations made by Cosby. Now I am not so naive as to not know that there are indeed poor persons in our number, but the condition of poor people knows no color or ethnicity.

In Christ,

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

While I don't, I know of people that do; they happen to be my relatives and congregants. I suggest in all love and respect that you come out from behind the walls and come visit those less fortunate than you.

And while poverty knows no color, ours is the only one we can affect. We need to clean up our own house first. We need to stop denying and pretending there are no problems. Stevie Wonder can see we have problems. Wake up, O sleepers!

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

Bro. Harris, No, I do not look like any of those you describe now; never have, never will. I started out as the son of a sharecropper and a mother with 8th grade education in deep East Texas. They produced 9 children, 5 College Graduates, 1 Electronic Technician, all gainfully employed; never took a dime of welfare; not millionaires but comfortable. Now you may not know what a sharecropper is but they own nothing and work for the man on the halves. Now, I and many others go back to east texas and purchase the land we share-cropped on. But my parents taught me that that hard work, education, and truct in God could carry me to places that was only limited by my abiblit to dream. The major problem the black community face today is themselves. We are responsible for letting it happen and allowing it to continue.

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

Brothers, Sisters,

We have got to be on our guard to not fall victim to the propaganda and tactics of racial politics, of which the perpetuation of 'self- hate' is chief. Surely we have ills in our community. This is neither shocking nor unexpected. It seems that Mr. Cosby isn't speaking about any of us? He seems to speak of the proverbial 'them.' The same 'them' that the majority population speaks of in their infamous 'them people' comments. I believe that for every one of 'them' that fit Bill's sweeping generalizations and sterotypes, there are 100s, 1000s, even 10,000s that don't.

It strikes me as sad and absurd, that instead of a public discourse that celebrates the monumental - no - Herculean achievements, successes, and progress made by this people in decades past, despite the obstacles imposed by past and present institutional racism - we rather suffer public diminishment - inspired by one of our own - applauded and approved by our intelligentsia - because we still have ills. "Whatever our problems, they are of our own making." The racists in the majority society have said as much for centuries, and some of us now say they were right all along.

The simple fact of the matter is that social problems of any magnitude are so complex in both origin and effect that even sincere and honest experts find it terribly difficult to understand them, and there is NO one who understands any SINGLE social problem in its entirety. Anyone who is less than completely and agonizingly honest about all the elements in the equation will quickly lose himself in a maze of half-truths, fallacious arguments and generally invalid and irrelevant generalizations.

In Christ,

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

Ron, Self Hate - Bill Cosby? You know better. You yourself are being victimized by racial politics. For example: Hilary Clinton and Al Gore, speaking to black people said that President Bush was not legally elected because Gore recieved won the national popular vote. Do you think they are so ignorant as to not know that the Electoral College elects the president? Why then, did they not day the same to mostly white audiences?

-- Anonymous, July 03, 2004

To those who wear this size...

Plasma t.v. watchin, BMW drivin, Island trip takin, expensive clothe wearin, social climin, position desirin, money countin, self- righteous, holier than thou, brood of vipers, hypocrits. When Mr. Cosby sells all that he has and gives it to the poor; when those who hoard material possession and boast of their status and their place involve themselves in the lives of real people less fortunate than themselves; when the conversation turns from them to us; then will I give credibility to their words and honor their commitment to their brother - and not before then. In the case of Mr. Cosby all I can say is - there's no fool like an old fool.


-- Anonymous, July 04, 2004

Bill COsby has given more in money, time and talent than I suspect you ever will.....

The only fool here is those of you who don't think we have a problem. Put MTV on and watch the teenagers. Listen to the lyrics, and then tell me Bill Cosby is wrong. Come visit some places in South Central, Robert Taylor Projects, Cabrini Green, and Red Hook. Not everyone is blessed to live in the Fantasyland you call reality.

It's easy to dismiss stats; then you don't have to admit a) there's a problem, and b) you're wrong. You're no different from the people that claim there is no God without offering empirical evidence.

-- Anonymous, July 04, 2004

Rev. Harper: You just said something there.

-- Anonymous, July 05, 2004

Rev. Harper, Rev. Al,

The currency of exchange in the kingdom is love.

In Christ,

-- Anonymous, July 05, 2004

Because I love you, I will tell you the truth to help you. Because I love you, sometimes I have to give you bitter medicene because it is good for you; Because I love you, I will not allow you to destroy yourself even if it means to deny you some or even all of your freedom of choice; Because God loves us, His son died on the cross in excruciating pain. Because I love my brothers and sisters, I will warn them about the consequences of negative behavior. Because I love you, I will tell you the truth. Because I love you!

-- Anonymous, July 05, 2004

My Brothers and Sisters,

Subjectively, I am as irritated by the many social ills that plague our people in America as much as Dr. Cosby. However, objectively, I know that there is a cause and effect relationship for every social ill. Dr. Cosby's original statement was incendiary and truthful. He should have left it at that because this is the type of thing that the media loves. The media in this country seizes upon negativity of this sort to justify existing social policies. For example, I can imagine some of the power strategists in this country saying things like " See, I told you so. Look what these people have done with their freedom on the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education".

It would be better at this point for Bill Cosby to focus his energies on getting our institutions to focus on solutions to these social ills. Let's see some leadership from him on getting us organized towards solutions. If we think of ourselves as human beings first instead of African-American as seek to obey God's commandments, we will be blessed. If we disobey God's commandments, we will be cursed according to Deuteronomy 28.

-- Anonymous, July 05, 2004

Jazzman, Bill Cosby has contributed in excess of $20Million to Black Colleges, This man has given fortunes awy to help the brothers and sisters. Not to mentition what Mrs Cosby does. She purchased a Wetlands area to preserve it so that the developers could not take it. $6M I believe. Cosby does not just talk, he walks the walk and so do I.

-- Anonymous, July 05, 2004

Here is a recent column I wrote for a Florida newspaper regarding the Cosby Critique. Questions, comments & criticisms are accepted. Go to:

I regret the link is not in hypertext but perhaps Parson Harper, Bob Matthews or Jerryl can fix it. Thanks. QED

-- Anonymous, July 15, 2004

Ask and it shall be given ... :-)

-- Anonymous, July 15, 2004

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