Bill Cosby has been keeping busy in prison. In his first interview from behind bars, Cosby spoke to BlackPressUSA.com, about mentoring inmates, his sexual assault trial, and the “privileged” life at Pennsylvania’s SCI-Phoenix facility.
Last year, Cosby was sentenced to three to 10 years in prison for aggravated indecent assault. Unless he’s granted parole, the Philly native will serve out the majority of his sentence. “I have eight years and nine months left,” he said during one of a series of 15-minute phone calls to the outlet. “When I come up for parole, they’re not going to hear me say that I have remorse. I was there. I don’t care what group of people come along and talk about this when they weren’t there. They don’t know.”
Cosby called his trial fraudulent. “It’s all a set up. That whole jury thing. They were imposters.”
As for his prison accommodations, Cosby referred to his cell as a “penthouse” and added, “I’m a privileged man in prison.”
On another note, Cosby revealed that he’s dedicated to helping fellow inmates through the Mann Up Association, a prison reform program aimed at encouraging and empowering black men to “strive for self-response and dignity and to put their family first,” according to the interview.
“I got a wife, family, and friends who are so happy that I have something. I go into my penthouse and lay down and start to think about how I can relay a message and give it on Saturdays [during Mann Up sessions] so that they would hear it and feel it.”
Cosby has given several prison speeches for Mann Up, one of which was “dedicated to women,” he said while explaining how his wife, Camille Cosby, inspired the lecture.
Elsewhere in the interview, the comedian talked about The Cosby Show being pulled off air, which he alleges was a larger attempt to erase positive depictions in the black history. “Thank goodness for TV One and BET, but we’ve got to respect ourselves. We’ve got to have a very, very strong respect for our history.”
Cosby also revisited his controversial “Pound Cake” speech in 2004. Looking back, Cosby admitted that he shouldn’t have made such sweeping statements about the black community in the speech, which commemorated the 50th anniversary of Brown vs. the Board of Education. That said, Cosby noted that he still has concerns for black America.
“They are under siege. This thing with the drugs and the different pockets of the neighborhoods where it’s going on,” he said. “When you look at what drugs are doing… things that make these people drive around and shoot into crowds.
“The insanity of what is the cause to the brain by all the drugs these people are dealing with. It’s exactly what I warned them about in 2004. They’ve thrown education out the window,” Cosby continued. “They’ve thrown respect for the family out the window, and they’re blaming each other for what’s going on. There is post-traumatic stress syndrome, and there are also bad manners.”
Click here for the full interview.