If there is a hell, that is where Joe Paterno currently resides.
Joe Paterno facilitated the repeated sexual abuse of young boys. Fact. In fact, Paterno knew since at least 1998. The skeletons uncovered in Happy Valley over the past year will be what that university is associated with for decades to come. Pennsylvania State University will never quite be the same. Not to us outsiders, at least.
Today the Paterno family released a statement. It closed with this:
“It can be argued that Joe Paterno should have gone further. He should have pushed his superiors to see that they were doing their jobs. We accept this criticism. At the same time, Joe Paterno and everyone else knew that Sandusky had been repeatedly investigated by authorities who approved his multiple adoptions and foster children. Joe Paterno mistakenly believed that investigators, law enforcement officials, University leaders and others would properly and fully investigate any issue and proceed as the facts dictated. This didn’t happen and everyone shares the responsibility.”
That’s a decent acknowledgement that Paterno did not do the right thing year after year. After year. After year. Good for the family, too. That’s certainly tough for of them to admit. Sadly, this is much more than many members of the Penn State community will admit.
Football at Penn State has blinded tens of thousands of otherwise intelligent people. I know that alumni aren’t going to completely renounce their loyalty to their university. Being a massive supporter of my alma matter, I understand the passion. However, the alumni must be humbled by this. In many cases a long look in the mirror is in order, coupled with some reevaluation of priorities.
Joe Paterno is dead. Literally and figuratively. The name should be banished from every Penn Staters vocabulary. Uttering it in any type of positive light can only bring grief from those outside the Penn State community.
Again, it’s baby steps. I’m realistic. Nittany Lions don’t have to hate Paterno. But they should be embarrassed. I mean, embarrassed of Paterno specifically not just Sandusky. Joe Paterno directly caused the biggest scandal in the history of collegiate athletics. He is one of the main players in the drama that caused the rest of the nation to look down upon Penn State.
I don’t want to hear how this isn’t a football scandal. Or this isn’t a Penn State scandal. The alumni sometimes act as if Sandusky went “rogue.” No! He had backup from Paterno and the rest of the administration.
Wisen-up, and act ashamed, people.
When someone negatively talks about the abomination that is this era of Penn State, hang your head. Walk away. And attempt to start moving on. Nothing you say to defend Penn State can stop the hurt that Paterno and company have caused.
Penn Staters should feel lucky that the NCAA is a joke when it comes to discipline.
I feel bad for Southern Methodist University. SMU gets the death penalty for cheating in some football games. It took that school decades to recover. The Penn State administration, mainly the athletics department, plays a role in a massive child sex abuse cover-up, and the NCAA does nothing. Pathetic.
It would feel so great if the school’s football program was given the death penalty. THAT punishment would only start to do this crime justice. Nittany Lions everywhere should feel so lucky that their school is even allowed to have a football program in 2012.
Penn State goes directly to my top 10 most hated universities in 2012. It’s not only the horrific acts that have taken place in those facilities, though. It’s the nonchalant attitude from many of those people in Happy Valley that vilifies Penn State going forward.
But, hey, go state.