A petition urging president Obama to revoke Bill Cosby’s 2002 Presidential Medal of Freedom award has been filed by a national sexual assault prevention group.
Promoting Awareness–Victim Empowerment’s Angela Rose said in a statement:
The presidential medal of freedom is the highest honor award to an American civilian… The list of those receiving this honor include America’s finest citizens – from Mother Teresa to Eunice Kennedy Shriver to Meryl Streep. Bill Cosby’s name does not belong among the distinguished list.
The Associated Press released 2005 court documents Monday, which reveal Cosby had previously confessed to purchasing powerful Quaaludes with the intent to sedate women in order to have sex with them.
“Cosby admitted to procuring drugs to have sex with women without their consent. He has been accused of serial rape by dozens of others. We cannot yet give his accusers their day in court, but we can fight back in the court of public opinion,” Rose stated.
“As such, we urge President Obama to take the unprecedented action of revoking this award and that Bill Cosby’s name be expunged from any official list of recipients,” she continued.
According to the Washington Examiner, this is not the first time Cosby’s accolade has been targeted, but there is no formal protocol to revoke such an award.
Among the other groups and organizations to cut ties with the comedian most recently include Walt Disney World, which removed a statue of the comedian from its park, and Atlanta-based TV network Bounce and BET-owned Centric, both of which pulled Cosby reruns from its schedules this week.
The United States Navy also stripped Cosby of his title as honorary Chief Petty Officer amid the sexual assault allegations last December, saying: “The Navy is taking this action because allegations against Mr. Cosby are very serious and are in conflict with the Navy’s core values of honor, courage and commitment.”
Cosby has been accused of drugging and/or raping dozens of women during his decades-long career.