Beverly Johnson made history when she rose to fame as the first black model to appear on the cover of American Vogue in August 1974. A year later, she became the first black woman to appear on the cover of the French edition of Elle. She carved out a path. She is successful in her own right. She does not need money.
Now she is joining an infamous list. The list of those who accuse Bill Cosby of acting inappropriately. She wrote an essay for Vanity Fair and started it like this:
Like most Americans, I spent the 60s, 70s, and part of the 80s in awe of Bill Cosby and his total domination of popular culture. He was the first African American to star in a dramatic television series, I Spy, a show my family in Buffalo, New York, always watched. Cosby cut a striking figure on-screen then. He was funny, smart, and even elegant—all those wonderful things many white Americans did not associate with people of color. In fact, as I thought of going public with what follows, a voice in my head kept whispering, “Black men have enough enemies out there already, they certainly don’t need someone like you, an African American with a familiar face and a famous name, fanning the flames.”
She goes on to explain the horrible nightmare she endured at the hands of Bill Cosby at what was one of the most vulnerable times of her life.
She follows it up by saying:
Looking back, that first invite from Cosby to his home seems like part of a perfectly laid out plan, a way to make me feel secure with him at all times. It worked like a charm. Cosby suggested I come back to his house a few days later to read for the part. I agreed, and one late afternoon the following week I returned. His staff served a light dinner and Bill and I talked more about my plans for the future.
Read the rest here.
Sad. very very sad.