For once, certain college students are getting angry about something that isn’t some abstract threat to their survival that some egg-headed thinker made up out of thin air.
Infuriated Howard University students and alumni are calling for actress Phylicia Rashad, of “The Cosby Show” fame, to be removed as dean of its College of Fine Arts in the wake of her enthusiastic support of Bill Cosby’s release from prison.
The hashtag #ByePhylicia started trending this week when the actress celebrated her former “Cosby Show” co-star’s release with a joyous, “FINALLY!!!!”
“A terrible wrong is being righted — a miscarriage of justice is corrected!” the actress posted on Twitter along with a photo of Cosby, whose sexual assault conviction was overturned Wednesday on a legal technicality.
Of course, the tweet is no longer available, but here it is.
Remember, Cosby, admitted under oath that for years he used quaaludes on women he dated in a civil trial.
Howard University, a famous historical black college, hasn’t made any announcement yet for any actions against Rashad who is a newly minted dean, and former student there, noting that her “tweet lacked sensitivity towards survivors of sexual assault.” What a way to start a no-show job.
It turns out that a lot of current and former students complained about her sentiment for the once-convicted rapist and made their thoughts known by posting online. Many of them called for the historic university to cut ties with her.
“Hold her ass accountable,” Whitney Meritus, wrote on Instagram. She’s a Howard class of 2024 student.
“I’d take a non-famous dean who believes [sex assault] victims over a celebrity dean who does s–t like this,” the musician wrote.
“I don’t think she deserves to lead the Chadwick A. Boseman School of Fine Arts. Not anymore,” she said of the school that in May was renamed to honor the late “Black Panther” actor, who was a former student.
Activist/Artist Janet Hubert responded, “Phylicia what are you thinking!!! I don’t know you but to say this was terribly wrong. EVERYONE knew what he was doing back then. How could you NOT! Get your umbrella sista here comes the shit shower. I am outraged that he has been released. Yes he is an old ass guilty man!”
Phylicia what are you thinking!!! I don't know you but to say this was terribly wrong. EVERYONE knew what he was doing back then. How could you NOT! Get your umbrella sista here comes the shit shower. I am outraged that he has been released. Yes he is an old ass guilty man! pic.twitter.com/9mHtuEYLgk
— Janet Hubert (@OGJanetHubert) June 30, 2021
Howard alumni Andrew Addison, Esq. thinks it’s a good thing to find out now that Rashad isn’t qualified to lead the College of Fine Arts.
“I think it’s good that Phylicia Rashad spoke up and showed us she’s not qualified to be the Dean of the College of Fine Arts. It’s really on Howard to do the right thing and rectify the situation”
I think it’s good that Phylicia Rashad spoke up and showed us she’s not qualified to be the Dean of the College of Fine Arts. It’s really on Howard to do the right thing and rectify the situation
— Andrew Addison, Esq. (@TheAndrewSystem) June 30, 2021
Nylah Burton, a journalist, said she was raped while attending the historically black college and “would not have felt safe under [Rashad’s] guidance.”
“When Rashad places herself so jubilantly on the side of a man who has been accused of sexual assault by 60 women and has admitted to drugging women, she places herself universes away from the needs and best interests of all her students,” Burton wrote in The Independent. OUCH! That’s gotta hurt.
“Had I been assaulted while a student of Dean Rashad, I can’t say that I would have ever come forward. Because I would have feared her retribution and her judgment,” she wrote, saying she “most likely would have stayed silent.”
She also took to twitter.
“For @Independent, I wrote about @PhyliciaRashad, Dean of the College of Fine Arts at @HowardU, tweeting VEHEMENT support of Bill Cosby, who has been accused of sexual assault by 60 women and has admitted to drugging women. Rashad should not be an educator.”
For @Independent, I wrote about @PhyliciaRashad, Dean of the College of Fine Arts at @HowardU, tweeting VEHEMENT support of Bill Cosby, who has been accused of sexual assault by 60 women and has admitted to drugging women. Rashad should not be an educator. https://t.co/4Fz5DBDcEH
— nylah burton (@yumcoconutmilk) June 30, 2021
My opinion is I think Rashad is just out of touch with real people. I think she bought into the hype that Cosby’s trial was racially motivated, even though he admitted to doing it in the civil trial. I think she had a friendship with the man over the years working with him on the show. It was an extremely successful show that made her famous. There has to be some special bond from all of that. Maybe because we live in an upside-down world these days she thought people would accept her words, and she wanted to be the first one to utter them? Who knows? But what we do know is that her stunt backfired on her and she’s catching heat for it. She’ll survive, but I don’t know if her position at Howard will.
Regardless of what we believe, here’s what it comes down to for a select group of Cosby’s victims relayed by one of many:
Janice Dickinson, one of the numerous women who accused Cosby of sexual assault and was one of the women who testified against Cosby in Andrea Constand’s now-overturned criminal case, is “angry” about the comedian walking free from prison.
“First of all, [I felt] so angry. So angry. Second, I felt like some psychic blow kicked me in the stomach, in my abdomen,” she told “Entertainment Tonight”, adding, “I’m angry they let him out over a procedural. That’s basically all I have to say. I can’t get into the legalese about it. I can only speak from my heart and say that the statute of limitations is not fair. It’s just not fair.”