AZ--Lawmaker: Revoke Cosby’s Medal of Honor. Victims respond

For immediate release: Friday, Jan. 8, 2016

Statement by Karen Polesir of Ambler, SNAP leader (

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We applaud every institution that has rescinded Cosby’s honorary degrees.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For the healing of the wounded and the protection of the vulnerable, Cosby’s honors should be withdrawn.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Recently, several Chicago-area institutions have rescinded or removed honors for ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert.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

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell,, Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell,, Barbara Blaine (


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  . . .

Read full article here

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