“The allegations about a former coach are troubling, and it is appropriate that they be investigated thoroughly. Protecting children requires the utmost vigilance. ”
Graham Spanier, Penn State University President
I am ashamed.
Not for anything I have done but rather for reading a report that has me sick to my stomach.
If you have not heard, there is a story coming out on Penn State University that leaves me dumbfounded. Former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, is accused of using both his university position as well as his charitable work, to sexually abuse young boys. **BE WARNED: the story is very disturbing on so many levels. The grand jury investigation report is available here.
As with any news story of this nature, it must be stated that these are “allegations” only. The legal process will play out and should be allowed to do so. Until proven otherwise, Mr. Sandusky is ‘innocent’. Let me, however, say this. IF THIS PROVES TO BE TRUE, there is no excuse for the actions of Penn St officials not taking this further with authorities.
When watching a live sporting event and something “controversial” happens that may not be sufficient for kids to see, we hear the question loosely asked: “What about the kids?”. I am here to ask Penn St officials: WHAT ABOUT THE KIDS?
Again, IF these allegations are true, is it not enough that a child was involved? Shouldn’t the fact that a child was involved prompt more than a response of “not that serious”? Isn’t a child’s welfare more important than the reputation of your university? It wasn’t a child that reported it to you, it was a Graduate Assistant…a Penn Stater, if you will.
Did you even do an investigation? Or was it simply a matter of, ‘We know Jerry Sandusky. He would never do such a thing. He helps kids. He’d never do that.’. Was that the extent of it to come to the conclusion this was “not that serious”? What would have happened if you HAD reported the 2002 incident to university police?Would your public relations nightmare be at the level it is today if you had taken it serious?
One last question: What happens if more victims come forward? It isn’t easy for children to make sense of what has happened to them. Often times, it isn’t until they are adults when they can comprehend the horrific memories of the abuse. Will there be more victims? Nobody knows. But what then Penn St? What happens if it happened to someone in 2003 or 2004, after it was reported to you? What then? Will your reputation be worth the years of torment a child suffered when they lay in bed at night? If allegations are true, I’m sure your thoughts are clear when you lay in bed at night, right?
An educational institution such as yourself whose own alma mater contains these words:
May no act of ours bring shame
To one heart that loves thy name,
May our lives but swell thy fame,
Dear old State, dear old State.
May no act of ours bring shame.
Here is what the Twitterverse said about this story so far: