Sunday, April 14, 2024

Bill Cosby SAYS, ‘Protect your CHILD’

Last year marked the 25th anniversary of “The Cosby Show” debut, beginning a landmark series that beamed weekly images of an upscale African-American family into millions of homes across the United States and the world.
The man behind — and at the center — of that ground-shifting moment in popular culture: William Henry “Bill” Cosby, who portrayed obstetrician Cliff Huxtable as the ideal father and husband. It was a long-awaited image that led to the show’s position as one of the most popular and beloved programs in television history.
Cosby’s legacy as a comedian, actor, philosopher, author, businessman and now hip-hop writer and producer (for his new group, the Cosnarati) has made him one of the wealthiest and most-recognized black men in the world. In recent years, the entertainer has drawn further attention for his unapologetically candid assessment of the state of the African-American community.
Recently, following a performance at Treasure Island, Cosby gave an interview to Black Image. During the discussion, he addressed a question on the minds of many: Why, at age 72, has the funnyman decided to turn his attention toward these very serious subjects?
“Some say that I don’t have to keep trying to communicate my message of personal responsibility to our young people and their parents, because I have reached a level of success,” he said. “I tell them that they are wrong — yes I do! One of the most important things for me, in all of the neighborhoods around the country — regardless of the color, culture or religion — is that I keep the message alive to positively keep it moving. Protect and love your child. Parents must stay involved with their child and communicate. I was watching “Black In America 2” with Soledad (O’Brien) from CNN, and she was interviewing a young black man, Steven Perry, who has a charter school that serves (mostly) African-American students from disadvantaged homes. He said there are 700 students in his school, and on a good day at parent-teacher conferences, only 25 parents will come to the school to meet with the teachers about their children. With high school truancy at an all-time high, we are in a state of emergency for our parents and for our children. Parents must go to their children’s schools, and see what’s going on, and meet with the teachers. It is extremely important. So, yes, I do need to keep talking and addressing these issues.”
In conversation, the condition of young people is a priority topic for Cosby. While acknowledging an overall downward trend in teen pregnancy, he notes that young African-American women still experience the highest rate of unplanned pregnancies. “Our young girls must understand that some of our young males today at the age of 13, 14 and 15 years old — or whatever age — are trying to … get the girl to let him in and let his sperm in. Not to become a father in the traditional sense, but to have a living, walking person from their body like a trophy. It is a conquest. What they don’t realize is the damage that is done, and that they have taken the young lady off her path for growth. For example, school is set up so that you advance from pre-kindergarten all the way until you graduate from the 12th grade. By the time you graduate from high school, the young girl or young man should have some idea of what they can do in terms of their academic future or getting a job. And on another note: The concept of having a job should be reinforced by parents to their children at a very early age — and supporting yourself one day, and your family if you choose to have one. But the child should be groomed to look forward to the day of becoming self-sufficient and feeling good about themselves.”
Cosby continued: “A young lady becoming pregnant is knocked off her personal track toward her own dreams, and now might have to resort to governmental services to economically take care of her child, and this routine … repeats itself. For the young boy it wasn’t about, ‘I want a child and a family.’ It is more about (pleasure)when having sex with the young lady — I want you to make sure you write this in your article, because there is no sense in hiding anything, because it is all on television. So, the point is that it is the parents’ responsibility to practice at least 85 percent prevention with their child to stop these behaviors of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.”
As higher-than-average crime rates continue to plague communities of color, Cosby waves off the accusation leveled by some that he is blaming black people for this tragedy.
“It is not true that I am blaming my own people for crime,” he insisted. “I am blaming people who are teaching their children nothing about protecting themselves. As parents you have to do it over, and over, and over again. You have to make (children) value themselves. I did a speech once about a piece of pound cake as an analogy for self-worth. When our children think about robbing someone, it is not to pay for their mother’s rent. It is more short-term — to ‘get some money,’ to go smoke some drugs or something. So, the child takes the pound cake from the store and the store owner shoots the child dead — over a 35-cent piece of pound cake. The value of the child who takes the pound cake and decides to run is made equal to the cost of the cake, and you can include the cost of

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