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Actor Phylicia Rashad was attacked on Twitter on Mother’s Day by a woman who blasted her as an enabler of Bill Cosby’s sexual assault spree, and the internet came to the “Cosby Show” star’s defense.
"Claire Huxtable was an enabler of the longest and most prolific drug rape predator In US history, Bill Cosby,” Twitter user Lisa Talmadge wrote, in a now-deleted tweet, according to TMZ. “Everyone on set knew he was a sadistic predator. Everyone. 75 women drugged and raped by Cosby and he got away with it because of enablers."
Talmadge is referring to Clair Huxtable, Rashad’s character in “The Cosby Show” who was married to Cosby's Cliff Huxtable. Much of Twitter didn’t respond well to the tweet.
“So, you woke up this morning to attack a Black woman (first confusing her with her character and then disrespectfully misspelling her real name) for the despicable actions of her co-worker. Why no fire for the white producers of the show, Lisa?,” one user tweeted at Talmadge.
Cosby was convicted in 2018 of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004. He is currently behind bars, serving a sentence of three to 10 years. While he was convicted of one assault, more than 50 women had come forward alleging that Cosby had drugged and sexually assaulted them over the course of decades.
Back in 2015, Rashad defended her co-star, noting that she never noticed any behavior to suggest that he was a predator, the Hollywood Reporter reported at the time.
“Forget these women,” she said. “What you’re seeing is the destruction of a legacy. And I think it’s orchestrated. I don’t know why or who’s doing it, but it’s the legacy. And it’s a legacy that is so important to the culture.”
In a more recent October 2020 interview with Bustle, she didn't directly address Cosby himself, but continued to defend the work they did together. When asked what she might respond to people who say they can't watch "The Cosby Show" anymore, she replied: “I don't know why anybody would feel that way. I just don’t accept what somebody says because they say it, and they say it in a loud voice. The internet has given a lot of anonymous people a very loud voice. And this, too, has happened before.”
Her defenders argued on Sunday that Rashad wasn’t responsible for Cosby’s behavior and that she didn’t appear to be aware of his actions at the time.
“Neither Claire Huxtable or Phylicia Rashad are responsible for Bill Cosby's actions. She was his co worker and employee not his supervisor or co conspirator in his crimes,” one Twitter user exclaimed.
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