Jasmine Guy opened up about the Bill Cosby sexual assault scandal and how the case has affected the Black community.
“I couldn’t really put the two images together,” said Guy of Cosby’s tarnished reputation. The two worked together on “The Cosby Show” spinoff “A Different World.”
Accusations of drugging and sexually assaulting women eventually led to Cosby being convicted of aggravated indecent assault involving accuser Andrea Constand in September 2018 and sentenced to three to 10 years in state prison. Last summer, Cosby was freed in June 2021 on a technicality after the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court vacated his conviction.
Guy noted that the case is “heartbreaking because he meant a lot to the community,” adding, “It’s heartbreaking for those of us in the business that admire him, his talent and his mind.”
The actress said she spoke with men about the case to better understand Cosby’s mindset.
“Just to [try to] understand the mentality, which is still baffling,” she said. “I asked practical questions like, ‘What pleasure do you get out of being with someone who’s kind of out of it?’
“I don’t expect people to be perfect and I don’t expect human beings not to falter,” she continued. “I just didn’t understand. I don’t know, there was a meanness behind it that I couldn’t understand.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Guy recalled the sparring between the network and the cast from “A Different World.” She worked on the beloved series from 1987 to 1993 and claims NBC never wanted to tackle deep subjects on the show. According to Guy, the network never treated the cast with respect like other actors on a hit show.
“It was always a fight with them,” she said.
“We were always told we were number two because we came in between ‘Cheers’ and ‘Cosby,’” Guy continued. “We were always told we stayed on the air because Cosby’s on the air. Our power was always diminished in Hollywood, to the networks, to the powers that be. We were not treated as I saw other actors treated on other hit shows.”
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