With Defenses Like These, Who Needs Accusations?

Via Hitfix: Bill Cosby’s TV son charges media with double standard: ‘Roman Polanski is still celebrated’

“You just look at just how the media is playing this whole thing out, and I can’t help but think about Woody Allen, Roman Polanski, [Seventh Heaven star] Stephen Collins, who it’s very clear, you know, the crime they’ve committed,” said Warner. “But there’s no one that has been calling for Woody’s movies to be pulled off the air. Roman Polanski is still celebrated. Stephen Collins’ show still comes on. So it’s just interesting how it’s very unbalanced. They’re trying to take Mr. Cosby’s star off the Hollywood Walk of Fame. And I am in no position to defend him, because I can’t, but nor will I throw him under the bus.”

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Gustopher says:

    We don’t really know that Woody Allen did anything illegal — the accusations stick because he has done a lot of perfectly legal but creepy things.

    (The “not-illegal, just so creepy and stomach-turningly inappropriate that accusations sound plausible” defense is better than the “Roman Polanski did it to” defense, if only because the latter requires comparing “Rosemary’s Baby” to “Leonard Part 6”)

  2. @Gustopher: It is fair point in regards to Allen. Still, the overall defense is rather remarkable.

  3. Kylopod says:


    if only because the latter requires comparing “Rosemary’s Baby” to “Leonard Part 6”

    That’s a bit unfair to Cosby’s talent. While his movie career left much to be desired, he remains one of the most brilliant and influential comedians of his generation, and an important cultural icon–something you cannot really say about Polanski even on his best days. He’s a great filmmaker, but that’s about it. Many great artists have been terrible human beings, but the Cosby fiasco is as if Mr. Rogers were revealed as a pedophile–it’s more than shocking, it’s also deeply dispiriting.

  4. Andre Kenji says:

    In some sense, he is right. Raping a teenager is a pretty abhorrent crime, and Roman Polanski is still celebrated to this day. And Polanski, unlike Cosby, was convicted.

  5. Grewgills says:

    @Andre Kenji:
    The big difference here is that Cosby was/is an icon and was held out as an exemplar. Polanski was never celebrated for anything other than being a great film maker. Cosby broke hearts because he was America’s dad. He was looked up to in a way that Polanski never was and never would have wanted to be. Add to that Cosby’s moralizing and his periodic scolding of the African American community for what he perceived as their moral and social failings and you have a recipe for an epic fall.