Bill Cosby’s conviction was recently overturned by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and he was shortly after allowed to be released from prison. Serving nearly three years of his three to 10-year sentence, the former comedian becoming a free man again has left social media split between celebrating and condemning his release. Staunch supporter and former The Cosby Show co-star Phylicia Rashad made her stance on the overturned conviction clear, saying in support of Cosby that “a terrible wrong is being righted.”
According to the Huffington Post, Rashad said in a since-deleted tweet about Cosby’s prison release, “FINALLY!!!! A terrible wrong is being righted- a miscarriage of justice is corrected!”
After facing backlash for her online comments, she then tried to clean things up a bit in a follow-up tweet. Claiming that she supports victims of sexual assault, the Creed actress wrote on Wednesday, “I fully support survivors of sexual assault coming forward. My post was in no way intended to be insensitive to their truth. Personally, I know from friends and family that such abuse has lifelong residual effects. My heartfelt wish is for healing.”
I fully support survivors of sexual assault coming forward. My post was in no way intended to be insensitive to their truth. Personally, I know from friends and family that such abuse has lifelong residual effects. My heartfelt wish is for healing.
— Phylicia Rashad (@PhyliciaRashad) June 30, 2021
Still, many weren’t satisfied and went on to drag Rashad for siding with Cosby, her longtime friend.
Addressing her support of Cosby along with sexual assault victims, one user wrote on Twitter, “You can’t support both the abuser and the abused @PhyliciaRashad”
— deputy dorito dust (@zilbitch) July 1, 2021
Phylicia Rashad being excited about Bill Cosby’s release is definitely giving “I know my brother has a problem, but he’s a good man.” Phylicia and all the Rashads of the world would rather sacrifice a woman and girls than actually do the right thing.
— Golding (@GoldingGirl617) June 30, 2021
“It was more than insensitive. Defending a monster because he is a friend. Today’s decision doesn’t exonerate Cosby. He was still found guilty. He is free on a technicality. Period,” another user wrote. “Let’s hope Howard University sees the light. You should not be near our daughters.”
It was more than insensitive. Defending a monster because he is a friend. Today’s decision doesn’t exonerate Cosby. He was still found guilty. He is free on a technicality. Period.
Let’s hope Howard University sees the light. You should not be near our daughters.
— LeonbergersRedux (@LeonbergersR) June 30, 2021
The fact that you CELEBRATED the release of a rapist due to a technicality has sealed your fate. You only regret the comment you made because you miscalculated the incoming shitstorm that took place as a result of your irresponsible words.
— Brown Eyed Susan (@smc429) June 30, 2021
Howard University, who appointed Rashad as dean of the HBCU’s College of Fine Arts this past May, sent out a tweet following her controversial comments, saying in part that her “initial tweet lacked sensitivity towards survivors of sexual assault” and that they will “stand with survivors and challenge systems that would deny them justice.”
— Howard University (@HowardU) July 1, 2021
Rashad has not been fired from the university.