On November 6, the Associated Press interviewed Bill Cosby and his wife Camille. The occasion was a show at the Smithsonian's National Museum of African Art, which (currently) features an exhibition displaying Cosby's collection of African American art.
The on-camera interview took place after the multiple sexual assault allegations against the comedian (re-)gained attention; the interviewer, much like NPR's Scott Simon did in his own talk with Cosby, mentioned them, giving Cosby a chance to respond. "I didn't want to—I have to ask about your name coming up in the news recently," the reporter said.
To which Cosby gave the non-answer answer that is becoming his standard: "No, no, we don't answer that," he replied.
Later: "There's no response."
Cosby kept responding, though. "There is no comment about that," Cosby reiterated, "and I'll tell you why. I think you were told. I—I don't want to compromise your integrity. But we don't—I don't—talk about it."
I don't want to compromise your integrity. This is a strange sentiment, considering that one of a reporter's primary jobs is to adjudicate the truth. Cosby is a public figure; he is, whether he likes it or not, currently being tried in one of the oldest legal systems there is: the court of public opinion. And in that court, whether they like it or not, journalists can serve as lawyers and judges and juries, often all at the same time.