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(L) Gabriella Demczuk/The New York Times; (R) KENA BETANCUR/Getty Images

A writer’s view

Ta-Nehisi Coates on Bill Cosby’s enablers: “Rape is systemic”

By WITW Staff on January 14, 2016

In an article for The Atlantic, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates dives into the mindset of Bill Cosby’s enablers. “The unspoken logic here holds that there has always been some sort of legitimate system for hearing and adjudicating plunder,” Coates writes after detailing comments made by Damon Wayans in which Cosby’s accusers were called “bitches” and some described as “un-rape-able.” Coates uses other examples of violence, like the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, to explain that there is a commonality in the way victims are blamed for crimes, and to build his case that even victims of discrimination can look away from—and thereby enable—other forms of violence.

“Only tribalism and power can explain the theory put forth by Cosby’s defenders—that some 40 women have joined together in a wide-ranging conspiracy to bring a powerful black man down,” Coates writes. “Rape is systemic. And like all systems of brutality it does not exist merely at the pleasure of its most direct actors. It depends on a healthy host-body of people willing to look away.”

Read the full article at The Atlantic.


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