Sex scandal or no sex scandal, Florida loves Bill Cosby. Despite snowballing allegations of rape that prompted Netflix to delay the comedian’s Thanksgiving Day special and NBC to drop his family comedy pilot, the comedian received two standing ovations at the beginning and end of his Melbourne, Florida set as well as screams of encouragement from a packed house, CNN reports.
Addressing reports of the assertions by several women that they had been drugged and sexually assaulted by him, Cosby told a Florida Today reporter backstage, “I know people are tired of me not saying anything, but a guy doesn’t have to answer to innuendos. People should fact check. People shouldn’t have to go through that and shouldn’t answer to innuendos.” Cosby did not comment on the allegations during his show.
Cosby also told Florida Today that he was aware of a local radio station offering prizes to attendees to heckle him during his set. “The thing is, these people are prodding and pushing people and asking people to have a frat house mentality. Now suppose someone brings a weapon or decided to do more foolishness. There will be announcements made and the stations made some disclaimers, but what if people don’t listen to what they said and they entice violence? That’s not good for anyone,” Florida Today quoted him as saying. There were three peaceful protesters at the show, who didn’t make any disruptions inside.
“When you go to a civil rights march or something like that, at least there are meetings and some organization to it and people understand how to behave,” Cosby told Florida Today about the radio station’s challenge. “There may be people coming to [my] show that don’t know exactly what to do; there is no organization to it all.”
To date, six Cosby performances have been canceled, including a Nov. 28 show at Treasure Island in Las Vegas. Cosby is scheduled to perform 36 shows between now and May 2015.