(Photo: New York Magazine, July 2015)
As the outrage against Bill Cosby continues, it's easy to forget that there are dozens of real-life victims in the matter — both at the hands of Cosby and a public that refused to believe their stories for decades. With a bold new cover story, New York Magazine seeks to remind us that the scandal has a human toll.
35 of the women who publicly accused Cosby of being a serial rapist banded together to make a statement that can't be dismissed. In a groundbreaking move, the nearly three dozen women appear together on the cover of the magazine in hopes that their collective voice will silence Cosby — who, through his legal representatives, has taken every opportunity to shame and belittle them — once and for all.
The group “ranges in age from early 20s to 80 and includes supermodels Beverly Johnson and Janice Dickinson alongside waitresses and Playboy bunnies and journalists," according to the article. The cover includes an empty chair, an acknowledgment of the "other women assaulted by Cosby who have not yet gone public."
As of last week, lawyers for Cosby were adamant that he “admitted to nothing more than being one of the many people who introduced Quaaludes into their consensual sex life in the 1970s.” But the women, whose stories are detailed individually in the magazine, tell a very different version of events and with remarkable consistency.
In addition to the public scandal that has already cost him his career and legacy, Cosby could face further civil and even criminal charges for his activities. As for the effect of the New York Magazine piece, Cosby's attorney's will have a hard time arguing the "lack of public interest," — the magazine's website crashed hours after the article was posted on Sunday night and was still down as of Monday afternoon.