Coates on Cosby

I implore each of you to read Ta-Nehisi Coates' latest piece for the Atlantic because anything I have tried to write does not do the piece justice. The subject: Bill Cosby. Coates gets it unlike a certain Lemon. More thoughts and links after the jump.

Whenever anyone especially a male writer shares their thoughts on sexual assault I cringe. As a sexual assault victim, the victim blaming by numerous writers and telly talking heads greatly triggers me and I'm sure many others. It's a sea of voices that do not get it at all and place all the blame on the victims but in this article Coates gets it:

Rape constitutes the loss of your body, which is all you are, to someone else. I have never been raped. But I have, several times as a child, been punched/stomped/kicked/bumrushed while walking home from school, and thus lost my body. The worst part for me was not the experience, but the humiliation of being unable to protect my body, which is all I am, from predators. Even now as I sketch this out for you publicly, I am humiliated all again. And this happened when I was a child. If recounting a physical assault causes me humiliation, how might recounting a sexual assault feel? And what would cause me to willingly stand up and relive that humiliation before a national audience? And why would I fake my way through such a thing? Cosby's accusers—who have no hope of criminal charges, nor civil damages—are courting the scrutiny of Cosby-lovers and rape-deniers. To what end?

I appreciate the honestly and wish more people would realize this. Coates touch on many things like Cosby's series of call-outs of Black Youth. Coates admits that one of his writing regrets happened in a 2008 piece, where he left just a few sentences devouter to the 13 women who at that time came forward.

In his words:

I have often thought about how those women would have felt had they read my piece. The subject was morality—and yet one of the biggest accusations of immorality was left for a few sentences, was rendered invisible.


Read his piece here.