Masimanyane condemns Cosby Show decision

Masimanyane Women’s Rights International condemns in the strongest terms Bounce TV’s decision to resume airing re-runs of Bill Cosby's 1980s sitcom, The Cosby Show.

This decision – while many other networks are maintaining a broadcast ban – is deeply insensitive, not only to the dozens of women who were raped and sexually assaulted by Cosby, by his own admission, but also to the millions of women who are affected by an insidious and lingering global rape culture.

It is worth reminding those who would defend the decision that, while Cosby’s sexual assault trial is only set down for June next year, the comedian is on record as admitting, under oath, to drugging several young women in order to have sex with them.

Rape and sexual assault remains a massive societal problem throughout the world, exacerbated by women’s reluctance to come forward due to harassment, vilification, ridicule and threats of retaliation. The tone-deaf decision by Bounce TV to perpetuate Mr Cosby’s platform as an entertainer who made millions off what we now now was a deceptive image as a loveable father figure, is deplorable.

The normalisation of rape and rape culture happens one thoughtless decision at a time. We therefore urge women – and men – around the world to protest this decision and to lobby Bounce TV to reconsider or, failing that, to boycott the network.

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