AZ--Lawmaker: Revoke Cosby’s Medal of Honor. Victims respond
For immediate release: Friday, Jan. 8, 2016
There’s no better time than now for our government to rescind honors given to disgraced rapist Bill Cosby. It would help victims of sexual violence heal. And it would help prevent more sexual violence, by making it easier for rape victims to report these heinous crimes.
We applaud Rep. Paul Gosar for siding with the innocent against the guilty. “Proof beyond a reasonable doubt” is needed to put Cosby behind bars. It’s not needed to revoke an honor.
Last month, Swarthmore and Drexel University revoked similar honors. This year, other institutions including Fordham, Goucher, Baylor, the University of San Francisco, Marquette and California State University have taken similar steps.
Last December, Cosby stepped down from the Temple University Board of Trustees. The University of Missouri is considering doing rescinding a degree it gave to Cosby.
We applaud every institution that has rescinded Cosby’s honorary degrees. It’s time the federal government takes similar steps. It’s time the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Missouri and every other institution to do the same.
We make society safer when we revoke honors for rapists, whether convicted or credibly accused. We make it easier for victims of sexual violence to speak up, get help, expose offenders and protect others.
It’s bogus for officials to claim “We haven’t ever revoked such an honor before.” That’s irrelevant. A president has probably never before honored a prominent entertainer who later was accused of raping, drugging and abusing dozens of women.
By refusing to take action, officials are making it harder for many rape victims to report their experiences. And they’re rubbing salt into the already deep and still fresh wounds of dozens of already-hurt victims of sexual violence.
For the healing of the wounded and the protection of the vulnerable, Cosby’s honors should be withdrawn. It serves no purpose now but to heap more pain on those already suffering and discourage them from reporting offenders and getting help.
Recently, several Chicago-area institutions have rescinded or removed honors for ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert. Congress moved Hastert’s portrait. We’re grateful to them for this. It’s a sensitive move. We hope federal and university officials will follow their example soon.
Adults have a simple choice: Do we make it easier or harder for victims to report crimes? Honoring wrongdoers makes it harder. And that’s wrong.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, firstname.lastname@example.org, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, email@example.com)
This Congressman Wants To Revoke Bill Cosby’s Medal Of Freedom
by rae paoletta January 8, 2016
On Friday (Jan. 8), Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) will introduce a bill that seeks to revoke Bill Cosby’s Presidential Medal of Freedom, which President George W. Bush awarded to him in 2002.
Gosar’s legislation “would call for President Barack Obama to revoke the medal…affirm his legal capacity to do so, and bring criminal penalties against anyone displaying the medal after having it revoked,” Reuters reports.
At the crux of the bill is Cosby’s admission under oath that . . .
SNAP will be Representing Clergy Abuse Survivors in Rome!
We are taking the fight to Rome and are standing up for all survivors on a world stage! From February 19-25, Board President Tim Lennon, Seattle Leader Mary Dispenza, Los Angeles Leader Esther Hatfield Miller and Austin Leader Carol Midboe will be traveling to Rome for Pope Francis' Papal Abuse Summit.
If you are a member of the media and looking to get in touch with these survivors while in Rome, click here for our media advisory and contact information. If you are interested in connecting with a survivor in the US from your area of coverage, please contact one of the SNAP leaders in the US listed below:
- East Coast/DC: Becky Ianni (SNAPvirginia@cox.net, 703-801-6044)
- Midwest/Chicago: Zach Hiner (firstname.lastname@example.org, 517-974-9009)
- Midwest/St. Louis: David Clohessy (email@example.com, 314314-566-9790)
- West Coast / San Francisco: Melanie Sakoda (firstname.lastname@example.org, 925-708-6175)
If you are looking to help spread the word about the importance of this summit and for survivors to be heard, add your voice to the conversation on social media using the hashtag #PBC2019. Be sure to follow SNAP on twitter and Facebook and share our posts, add your comments, and let the world know that we are watching!Learn More