Gosh darn, come on now Mr. Huxtable. Does this mean  Little Bill is a lie too?

Books are a big part of my  home.  You can find them in almost every room except  the  bathroom. With my two youngest  attending  charter school, reading is happening even more at home.

Finding my children  lost in books is never a surprise—  I came in from work last Tuesday and found my 7 year old son  sprawled across  the bedroom floor amongst  7 to 8   books. It  made me smile . On  a closer look of the titles I saw the  kid fantasy, “The Legend of Zelda”, “The Diary of a Wimpy Kid” which  is on my “bathroom talk” list  as it celebrates  the wedgie, booger and  fart loving humorous stage  only boys love to love and  which  my son currently LIVES for, and lives to tease  his 8- year old sister  with.  The other four books including  the one in his hand  were  all   “Little Bill”  book titles .


I did a double take and asked. “Hey what ya reading there ?” No answer. Finally an ‘Oh, hi mommy, I’m just reading Little Bill’s The Meanest Thing To Say’ was  his reply.


Bill Cosby, 77 is under fire for acts against women

In light of the accusations   that have been leveled against Mr Cosby by many women including former top model Janice Dickerson as seen in PEOPLE  magazine I immediately wondered did my 7- year old  hear something on the news or read something  on the computer . For me, I, wanted to know,  if he did hear something,  what , where, when  and how much. Moreover, does he understand any of it.

Whispering to my husband I asked why the  amount of Little Bills on the floor all of a sudden? What gives?  In hindsight though  had this happened  before Mr. Cosby hit the headlines  I would not have asked such a question.  Instead I would have been happy knowing that he had chosen these books—-a  book series by a black author and a  black female illustrator, the late Varnette  P. Honeywood.

Thinking aloud,  I wondered will we have to decide on the  fate of these books as many  were  deciding on the fate of the legacy of Mr. Cosby . Would  this series   of books  loved by my  children ages 22 to 7 continue to stay on our  bookshelves. My eldest son  grew up with Little Bill. They have a  more than 15-year relationship.

On Mr Cosby. I have  compartmentalized him into a few categories——the man accused of allegedly  drugging and taking advantage of  women going back more than 20 years; the man who has done great things to uplift  his race; the man with the ideal legacy; the man who stood for fatherhood.

Looking back I  remember to 2006 while still a reporter at PEOPLE  that the magazine  interviewed  five  accusers of Mr. Cosby who were at that time part of a civil lawsuit Cosby  settled  with Andrea Constand,  a former Temple University employee who claimed she was  drugged and sexually assaulted by him in his Philadelphia-area mansion in 2004. At that time 13 “Jane Does'” as they were referred to in the court papers had come forward to testify.  Fast forward  8 years later and we have celebrity faces like Dickerson and now most recently  the famed African American model Beverly Johnson speaking out  to Vanity Fair  of being drugged by him.


Famed Model Beverly Johnson

Mr Cosby  has stood  for a lot   and   his  Little Bill books stand for so much more . To  children across the world the book series by one of America’s most beloved comedians has  helped them to wrestle through the many stages of growing up.  Yes I am torn about the man and  what  he is alleged to have done. But am I going to throw my Little Bill books out ?  No,  I am not. These books. They are staying  on the bookshelf.

Our Little Bill books have a history and that is what  makes them that more special to us and especially my  small son and daughter.  Besides knowing that they are  hand-me-down books  from   big brother  Dillon. Each of  the 12 books help affirm the value of  family and friendship and  help encourage kids to  solve problems fairly.. Mr Cosby definitely knows what makes kids tick and how they relate to each other. Hmmm, maybe he needs  to take some “Little Bill” advice.

I can remember buying each and every one  of  them for Dillon.  Packed away  as he grew older  they were put  back on the shelf  when we  moved to our home in PA in 2006.  When our now  7 and 8-year olds became Cosby fans  they opted for the syndicated Cosby Show  and my  husband’s  personal library of  taped VHS Cosby Show programs.  Once  they grew older and got into   reading  chapter  books  they were quickly and easily hooked to Little Bill.  the illustrated artwork alone is a draw. .

Little Bill has taught  my black sons and daughter how to read better, how to treat their fellow man, how to cope with mean kids, the consequences of telling fibs, dealing with being afraid of the dark, and being teased about  first  crushes and more  .

All in all  Little Bill  became that  friend  in a book . An imaginary bestie that they to this  day continue to learn from

So I think Little Bill  will get to stay. Big Bill though, I am not too sure about!

4 thoughts on “TAKE A PAGE OUT OF LITTLE BILL’S BOOK MR. COSBY….BY Debra Lewis-Boothman

  1. Michael Lawrence Langan, M.D. says:

    Bill Cosby was one of my Hero’s since I was 10 years old. I used to listen to my parents record “Why is there air?” over and over again, grew up with Fat Albert and always admired his political views, good works, empathy and ostensible humanity. What a shame if this is all true. Just as shameful are those who knew for the past 30 years, could have done something about it and didn’t.


    • debralb says:

      Hi Michael: thanks for commenting. He was mine too.I remember going to see him as far back as 87′ when I was a teen .This was during his Fatherhood tour and he made such an impact. That’s why hearing all thats happening is so disappointing and why I dont want to have the conversations about him with my kids. I do know that i will have to say that he did a very bad thing, but I am holding out that I won’t have to say anything to my 7 and 8 year olds who are avid readers and can to read the headlines and banners.

      Liked by 1 person

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