"The accusations against Mr. Cosby have been all the more striking because his hit TV show, his commercials for Jell-O and his best-selling books about fatherhood helped him present an image of the ideal family man."
New York Times, Nov. 30, 2014
The numbers of accusations, all eerily similar and spanning many years, are growing impossible to ignore.
This is like 2011, when Joe Paterno, long valorized for moral character, was revealed to have done nothing after learning that a longtime member of his staff had abused children sexually.
We are awash in celebrities these days -- actors, athletes, models, politicians, billionaires -- but not many whom we respect personally. They mostly seem to be managing their images, parading their wealth, promoting their "brands."
We know that humans are flawed. We expect creeps to be creeps. But when the rare, admirable public figure shows himself to be less than we thought he was, the disappointment and sorrow run particularly deep.