For the third time in six days another top tier university has rescinded the honorary degree given to Bill Cosby. Last Thursday, Fordham University stripped him of an honorary degree given to him in 2001 followed by Marquette University on the same day. These actions were taken over rape allegations made against Cosby by several women. Cosby has admitted in court depositions that he has given women Quaaludes in the past for the purpose of having sex with them.
Now Brown University, located in Providence, Rhode Island, has announced that it will also rescind an honorary degree given to Cosby in 1985. President Christina Paxson sent out an email on Monday. “It has become clear, by his own admission in legal depositions that became public this summer, that Mr. Cosby has engaged in conduct with women that is contrary to the values of Brown and the qualities for which he was honored by the University in 1985. The conduct that Mr. Cosby has acknowledged is wholly inconsistent with the behavior we expect of any individual associated with Brown. It is particularly troubling as our university community continues to confront the very real challenges of sexual violence on our campus and in society at large, and had it been known to the Fellows in 1985, an honorary degree … would not have been conferred,” Paxon wrote.
The school has confirmed that this is the first time it has ever rescinded an honorary degree since the year 1764. Cosby has not been charged with any crime but his legacy has been damaged, perhaps beyond repair.