Over the past few years, it has saddened me to hear of my cultural heroes being accused of criminal activity or have their lives cut short due to prescription medications. People like Bill Cosby, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston, just to name a few. And now, the news that Felicity Huffman, a brilliant actress and one of my favorites, has pled guilty to paying thousands of dollars to have her child’s SAT scores fixed. When I discuss this issue with others, many of them become angry, just for the mere fact that they have been betrayed by those who they revered. In addition, I feel there is a sense of comfort and feeling of “home” that has been taken away with this betrayal and that the individual is not who we thought they were. Our troubles seemed to disappear for a while whenever we would enjoy their work. So, of course anger is an immediate emotion, and completely justifiable, but is it impossible to not remember all of the good work and the pleasure they brought to millions outside of their illegal activities? Even though they themselves did not live the example set by their brilliant work, does that completely diminish the impact their work had on our society? Thursday was a fantastic day growing up, especially when 8PM rolled around.  Those nights on NBC were a welcome visit to the Huxatble household where the patriarch set an example for his children and those watching.  I can’t help but think that many people who watched “The Cosby Show” turned their lives around by realizing there was more they could do for themselves. And I still can’t help but smile when I listen to “Thriller” or “Whitney” and think about how happy that music has made me, as well as millions of others.

These individuals aren’t and weren’t perfect, but they were in our eyes.  And I guess we felt they could do no wrong nor could they harm anyone else or themselves. My local heroes at home were far from perfect, but that does not diminish the wonderful times they gave me and the brilliant memories I have. So as unforgiveable as those acts are that made Mr. Cosby and Mr. Jackson to be classified as criminals, in a world where there is so much hate and distrust between people, I have to try to find the good. And I can’t help but consider their work in music, film and television to be nothing short of a miracle and treasures they have left us with. Good memories are a wonderful source of comfort, regardless of who helped make them.