First of all if you don't understand the big fuss, just understand that Joe Paterno wields so much influence in that school and the town State College, Pennsylvania that is beyond most people's comprehension.
Any adult that lives out their sexual desire on any child is so wrong but you don't need me to tell you that. Many of you if not all of you are extremely disgusted at the thought of the perpetration of such an act. Well I am here to offer you perspective on something worse. That is the institutional consent for that disgusting episode to continue and spread. Perspective from my life experience.
I thank God that the only person to ever sexually abuse me is myself. But I know a little bit about institutional cover up of such horrific acts.
I won't bore you with facts you already know about this case but in case you don't have them just google "Penn State Sandusky" and all you need to know will be there. Nobody is accusing Joe Paterno of molesting a child. For now know that he has 17 grandchildren. He is a very beloved figure in his local community and up until recently an admired figure in the world of major college football. Grandpa Joe has the public reputation that is actually sadly rare in major college football. That he succeeds in football yet he puts football in perspective of the broader university mandate . Football is just a part of the university and it is not the university. Which makes the whole mess even sadder.
Paterno was king in Penn State. Sometimes silence speaks the loudest and his relative silence cost several young boys their childhood and their sanity.
If you heard a story of something happening in your domain involving a 58 year old man and a ten year old boy resembling the squeal like a pig scene from Deliverance I would hope you would do more than Paterno did. The facts show that Paterno informed his superiors and thus absolving himself from criminal liability as far as I have read. Morally though he failed the kids. Joe technically had superiors but make no mistake Paterno is king of his school and of that town. He failed those kids. What is worse is how can you look at the perpetrator of man to child rape on a regular basis? Why did you not at least quietly banish him from your Kingdom? The cliche is that bad men have their way when good men do nothing. Well in the simplest terms Sandusky was Sandusky (if the allegations are true) because King Paterno did nothing.
So far everything I told you , can be gathered reading a few editorials on this case. But the time has come to explain why I can give a personal spin on this. For me, this basic hurt compounded because of an institutional cover up. And I was privy to such a cover up being imposed to my personal situation.
Mount Cashel was an all boys orphanage run by the Christian Brothers. The orphanage was located in Newfoundland which is Canada's easternmost point. You may Google the background of their covert child sex abuse saga yourself but I have provided links. Just like Sandusky should have been disavowed by Penn State, the perpetrators of the child abuse ( both physical and sexual) should have been cut loose by the Christian Brothers. Instead they were sent to Canada's western most tip but not to an orphanage but to an elementary / high school for boys called Vancouver College. A school I attended from 1980 to 1985.
I enjoyed my five years there and I felt I learned a lot from being there. Like not to swallow the company line. The company line of Vancouver College and the Christian Brothers was "no comment". Even the author of the definitive book on this scandal said in an interview that the people involved were taking their cue from their lawyers and not from God.
I truly forgot what the first leak in the dam was in the mid 80s but it was a kick in the stomach. The same way some people are feeling about Penn State. My cry back then was these guys were supposed to be in jail instead they were teaching us. That is the crux of the Penn State issue is the cover up and the further spread of the Sandusky sickness. Sorry, but that is why Paterno has some responsibility. He is not as guilty as Sundusky of course but he is partly responsible for victims post 2002. Maybe I have a different perspective than most because of where I was but it makes me ache for everybody else who had to suffer in silence and in a somewhat detached way, I am a little closer to what they are feeling.
If PDFs not found go to
1) PDF Grand Jury Sandusky
2) PDF Inquiry to the Mount Cashel Orphanage sexual abuse .
Can be found here.
Sexual abuse of children is not a laughing matter. The fact that it is institutionally consented upon is worse. For those of you still not clear what Paterno and the Penn State executives should have done was look at the big picture how the whole organization could be affected. If they did that, this would have stopped eight years ago. Which brings to mind discussion you will see here. Substitute:
Hank- Jerry Sandusky
Larry Sanders - Joe Paterno
Artie- Tim Curley (Penn State Athletic Director)
and you might be able to visualize how this should have gone down.