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How Could I NOT Talk About It? The Penn State Sex Offender Thing.

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

How Could I NOT Talk About It? The Penn State Sex Offender Thing.

It's worth discussing.  And since I have to come up with 30 days worth of material for this month's NaBloPoMo, this presented itself at an opportune time.

The web world is all aflutter with the Penn State Athletics Sex Scandal.  Or whatever you want to call it.

This makes me ashamed for all the times I've called Florida State's mascot the "Criminoles" and equated red sweater vests with "Liars".  What Penn State's leaders have done makes all those NCAA violations child's play.

Via e-mail, Twitter and Facebook, I'm commiserating with my PSU classmates.  We're convincing each other that the university will dust off, move on and continue to move forward.  We're pondering amongst each other what the leaders must have been thinking to cover up something like this, whether JoePa will receive any traditional retirement benefits, and all those great Linebacker U players who regarded Sandusky as a mentor right up through this year! The alumni association is pleading with their membership to continue support to the association and university.  Ironically, we received an Penn State Annual Gift letter on Tuesday.  We typically give a modest amount every year, specifically targeting the meteorology department and AFROTC.  This likely won't change...those departments still need support.

But other thoughts have entered the mothering side of my brain.  I had these same thoughts in 2008, which is when we learned through our local TV station that Jacob's soccer coach in Apex, NC was arrested on sexual misconduct charges.  Thoughts like "How can I trust any other athletic coach?" and "How do I know that ANY adult my child interacts with isn't a sexual offender?"

So now I'm getting nervous thoughts about my kids going off to school each day, going off to college in the future, headed out to Boy Scout camp -- without the parents -- by the time they're in 5th grade.

I won't want to go through life like this.  I want to trust people.  After all, I trusted a 19-year-old with my sons for a few days in September while Dave and I traveled to Omaha on AF business, right?  I trust my sons on a school bus every day, I trust them at birthday parties, at school, and at those occasional trips they take with friends' parents.  Other parents trust me with their kids.

I'm not happy with how one guy's evil, and the witnesses who did nothing about it, turned into a huge Joe Paterno drama.  Joe Paterno may be part of the cover-up problem, but he is NOT the child rapist.  Last night CNN was airing stock footage of JoePa while discussing the graphic descriptions of those terrible things Sandusky did.  I call foul on that, CNN!

JoePa was fired first, while even Sandusky continues to receive benefits from the university for his defense, since he's "innocent until proven guilty".

Pardon the babbling here, pride in my alma mater has been shattered just a little.

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