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Another reason to revoke Cosby’s degree

| Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Pull Bill Cosby’s honorary degree? In a word, yes. Do it now. Do it yesterday.

I won’t belabor the well-known disgusting facts of the current allegations, which on their own merit pulling that degree.

I want to take this opportunity to highlight another lesser-known incident no one at Notre Dame should ever forget. The incident illustrates what a despicable person Bill Cosby is.

For those who do not know the name Dean Brown, I will provide a little background. Brown, a member of the class of 1989, was an All-American football player at Notre Dame. However, he was much more than that to anyone who ever knew him. His nickname was “Big Happy,” and he was one of the most well-liked, well-respected and genuine people to ever come through Notre Dame. Brown overcame a great deal to make it to Notre Dame and become the man he was.

Bill Cosby was on campus in 1989 to speak to a group of about 50 African-American students at graduation. It was a joyous time for everyone to celebrate the hard work of the last four years. Cosby took that opportunity to bring Brown up on stage and berate him for his GPA. Upon hearing of Brown’s 2.5 GPA, Cosby angrily said, “2.5 is okay if you have a mental disorder. You should be ashamed of yourself. You should have worked harder.”

He went on to berate Brown to tears. The story is well-documented in the media, and you can read about it in more detail via a simple Google search. For the record, Cosby is a college dropout.

Notre Dame should have pulled Cosby’s degree years ago solely for the way he treated a member of our family. What has come to light regarding that man over the last year is more than enough to remove the degree and remove his association with our University.

Rest in Peace “Big Happy.” You were a true Notre Dame man and 1,000 times the man Cosby ever was or will be.

Tom Jennings
Class of 1988
Feb. 19

The views expressed in this Letter to the Editor are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.


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