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Over the last few months there have been numerous diaries concerning the pedophile scandal at Penn State University (PSU).  The  primary focus of almost every diary has been to place the majority of blame on Joe Paterno and the unmitigated power he and the football program held over PSU.  Each diary, and the subsequent comments, then attempt to use the scandal as a reason to end the football program and destroy what little is left of Paterno's reputation.  

I believe both Paterno and the football program deserve condemnation, however, it is my concern that this is a short-sighted focus allowing for many more responsible parties to escape scrunity.

If the goal is to simply take down the biggest name, or push an agenda that college football has become to powerful, than this attack has merit. However, if the goal is to determine how this scandal unfolded, and put in place practices and programs to prevent child abuse in the future, we need to broaden our examination of what occurred.

Over 20 years ago, the state of Pennsylvania (Pa.) allowed Jerry Sandusky to set up and operate a foundation to help disadvantaged youth called The 2nd Mile.  Over the years, this foundation grew to become one of the largest and most financially successful philanthropies in Pa. Thousands of children were placed into 2nd Mile, all under the review and approval of the state Child Welfare leadership.  2nd Mile employed numerous individuals, supposedly trained to identify "high risk", dangerous adults, and preceive signs of abuse in children.  To this date, there has been no evidence of anyone at the state level, or at 2nd Mile, who voiced any concerns revolving around Sandusky or his actions.  This is extremely distrubing.  People who's life purpose, education, and training was to recognize the signs of both child abuse and pedophilia, failed to ever raise a single concern.

For over 20 years, Jerry Sandusky was approved by the Pa. Child Welfare leadership to have over 20+ foster children placed in his home.  Again, there is no evidence anyone from the state raised any concerns.  Apparently, not one background check, home visit, or interview with any children raised even a single "red flag". Again, this is extremely distrubing.  Again, experts with all the training required to preceive signs of abuse failed.

After almost 30 years of working at PSU, and over 20 years of being a state approved caretaker of children, Sandusky is accused of inappropriate contact with a child in 1998.  This is the first time evidence can be sighted of someone questioning Sandusky.  Prior to '98, there is nothing in Sandusky's record except glowing accounts of his charity.  The '98 investigation is conducted by both the PSU police and Childrens Welfare Services.  All charges are determined to be unfounded and the case is dropped. According to both the 3 year Attorney General (AG) investigation and the 6 month Freeh investigation, PSU does not influence any part of the investigation.  However, Children's Services either ignores or breaks the law by not informing Sandusky's foundation, 2nd Mile, that an investigation took place.  The PSU police department, decides to bury the report as unfounded and do not notify PSU Human Resources, as is required by law.  

The '98 accusations and investigation results seem extremely important.  This was the first opportunity to stop Sandusky.  Again, trained professionals missed all the signs that Sandusky was a pedophile.  Two psychologists examined the evidence.  One stated Sandusky simply had "boundary issues".  The other psychologist stated Sandusky showed all the signs of a pedophile who "groomed" children by rewarding them.  Child Welfare only shared the "boundary issue" report and never shared the report that Sandusky was a potential pedophile.  Again, trained professionals failed to see Sandusky as he is. It appears all future PSU decisions regarding Sandusky are made with the resuts of this investigation lingering in the backs of their minds.

In 2001, a 28 yr old graduate assistant (McQueary), reports to his father, a family friend who is an MD, Paterno, the Athletic Director (Curley) and a PSU Vice President (Shultz) he witnessed "something sexual", involving Sandusky and a child in the PSU showers.  However, whatever he witnessed, and whatever he told them, especially his Physician Asst. father and the family friend doctor, does not concern them enough to call the police.  Two of these men work in the medical field and certainly understand reporting laws concerning child abuse.  It seems McQueary's report does not, in their minds, rise to the level of a crime.  And it seems PSU leadership see this as the same type of report made in '98.  

It is the actions of Paterno and PSU leadership from this point, that has brought all of them down.  Paterno waits 24 hours and reports McQueary's account (a Sunday) to his superiors.  Curley and Shultz, prior to meeting with McQueary, discuss the accusation with PSU President Spainer and PSU legal council that Sunday, according to legal billing reports.  It is decided at that time to not report Sandusky, but to confront him and see that he receives help.  Paterno was not in this meeting.  It appears he is later consulted about their proposed actions and he signs off on them.  From this point on, PSU does nothing to prohibit Sandusky from using the facilities, and never reports the McQueary account.  PSU legal council (Baldwin) even later advises the University to do nothing negative to Sandusky for fear of a lawsuit.  She states he has never committed a crime, and therefore must retain all of his privileges.  And the Freeh report finds no evidence PSU made any decisions regarding Sandusky's future based on any previous accuations.    

Finally (I know), the AG conducts a 3 year investigation, starting in 2008, into Sandusky being a pedophile.  For the entire 3 years, Sandusky is allowed to roam free and prey on children.  And while the investigation includes 2nd Mile, the AG (now govenor), accepts large donations to his campaign from 2nd Mile.

Based on the entire saga, I do not believe Paterno or football are the main players in this scandal.  If we truly want to find the root causes for how a pedophile existed as long as he did, there needs to be a complete overhaul of the Child Welfare System in Pa.  This is the program that should be shutdown and rebuilt. The police and welfare workers involved in the '98 investigation need to be held to account.  The AG needs to explain why Sanduskyy was allowed to roam free for 3 years while being investigated, and why he accepted money from a foundation he was actively investigating.  The lawyers for PSU need to be investigated for malpractice.  2nd Mile needs to be shutdown and investigated about what they knew and what they did/did not report.  Finally, the Paterno statue should be removed.

Again, my concern with everyone blaming Paterno and football is that the bigger picture is being missed.  Destroying Paterno or shutting down the football program may feel good, but it does not protect a single child in the future. A more detailed evaluation of the roles of the many people and institutions involved in this scandal might save the next child.

That is what we all really want, right?    

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Comment Preferences

  •  Shut it down. The rot goes to the top. Meanwhile, (12+ / 0-)

    The Governor (former AG) needs to be investigated, too.

    A lot of people at a lot of levels were involved, but that football program is BROKEN.

    Shut it down and start over in 4 years.  Or 10.

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 08:46:31 AM PDT

    •  I just don't see how shutting down football (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jim P, raincrow

      protects a sindle child from future abuse.

      I would like to see decisions based on the future protection of children rather than just 'shutting it down', to make us feel better.

      •  Deterrence plain and simple. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        polecat, WheninRome, Crabby Abbey, a2nite

        I would abolish football at PSU for two generations (50 years) as the equivalent of the Romans salting the earth of Carthage. Nobody's father will have played at PSU, there will be nobody to rally to the support of criminals.

        The next member of a big time program must know that failure to protect the child will result in utter calamity for him or her personally as well as their co-workers and the program they serve. Absolute calamity.

        There will surely be collateral damage, that is unfortunate but also is part of the deterrent.

        "Who is John Galt?" A two dimensional character in a third rate novel.

        by Inventor on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:26:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Imagine your kid in that program... (5+ / 0-)

        would you have ANY confidence at all that he'd be taken care of properly?

        Educationally?
        Physically? (what if there's an injury)
        Mentally?

        There are both smoke and fire here.  The decisions the staff made were to protect their hierarchy and the golden goose, not the children and I assert not the athletes.

        Death Penalty.

        Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
        I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
        —Spike Milligan

        by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:27:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Programs have been shut down for FAR less (4+ / 0-)

        and you think PSU should get a pass?

        Tell that to SMU.  Or UK.  Or Southwest Louisiana.

        re SMU:

        The infractions committee cited the need to "eliminate a program that was built on a legacy of wrongdoing, deceit and rule violations" as a factor in what is still the harshest penalty ever meted out to any major collegiate program.
        And this is LESS serious by any measure than THOSE?

        /facepalm

        Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
        I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
        —Spike Milligan

        by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:38:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  never said anyone deserved "a pass" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          raincrow
          •  No, you said that they shouldn't be shut down./nt (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            a2nite, shaharazade

            Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
            I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
            —Spike Milligan

            by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:50:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I simply believe shutting down football does (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              raincrow

              nothing to resolve this or protect children.  PSU isn't getting a pass from me.  I simply think this is more than football

              •  Of course it is more than football. Culpability is (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                a2nite, Back In Blue, shaharazade

                wide-spread on this one.

                The former AG/now governor is culpable.  People in the PSU hierarchy that allowed this to continue are culpable.

                But that football program was a prime cause for it to continue for as long as it did -- and fear of crossing someone in power within it.

                No one.  Absolutely NO ONE is saying that the only move should be to shut down PSU's football program.  It should be part of the solution, to be sure, but not the only move.

                A new board of governors would be appropriate, too.

                If this happened at my Alma Mater, I'd be asking for the University President's head on a platter, just for a start. Of course the Athletic Director and staff... And then that AG...  

                Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
                I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
                —Spike Milligan

                by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:03:10 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  PSU should get kicked out of the Big-10, IMHO. /nt (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                shaharazade

                Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
                I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
                —Spike Milligan

                by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:03:59 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  All of these reactiions are understandable (0+ / 0-)

                  "kill football", "kick them out",  However i still believe it hides the larger scandal.

                  Place football in the proper context of this scandal.

                  Courts will decide how much this costs PSU and who is guilty of what.

                  The NCAA and B10 will do something to let the public know they take it seriously.  However, i think PSU football will survive (in the B10).

                  The answers to how this happened and what corrective actions can be put in place to protect children will involve much more than PSU football

                  •  The point is MONEY and MOTIVE. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    a2nite

                    PSU football is common element.

                    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
                    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
                    —Spike Milligan

                    by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:15:37 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  They are both elements, but who was affected (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      polecat

                      by the money.  The money hasn't abbated; the players are still coming; the stadium will be sold out every home game.

                      I'm still not sure who the PSU leaders thought they were protecting, but I doubt they ever worried about financial support drying up.  They knew their base.

                      To look at it logically, they would have had to known there was a much bigger risk in covering up a crime instead of exposing it.  They had to know that.  I keep wondering if they really believed Sandusky, while strange and had "boundary issues", never really thought he was a pedophile.

        •  There is a difference with those examples (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          taffers

          They involve the kind of thing that the NCAA is designed to deal with - actions that undermine fair sportsmanship and give unfair advantage for one team over another. NCAA is really not equipped to respond to something as out of the ordinary as the Penn State mess. Obviously, they perceive they probably need to do something, but it's not as clear cut in terms of their role as it is with the programs you mentioned.

          from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

          by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:01:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Isn't the safety of the kids in the program (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Catte Nappe

            within their purview?

            This directly goes to the safety of the athletes.  If the powers-that-be are more willing to cover something up than to protect the kids they work with...

            Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
            I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
            —Spike Milligan

            by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:07:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Safety of what athletes? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              taffers

              The victims were not athletes in the football program. They weren't even directly participating in the football program. They were participating in a non-profit program that had unique and high level access to football program facilities and events, but they weren't part of the football program themselves. Diarist is correct that in that respect the charity (2nd Mile) and any certifying or placement entity like Children's Services, has more direct responsibility than did the Penn State football program.

              from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

              by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:18:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  ?Coverup wasn't part of the PSU football program? (0+ / 0-)

                Did I just hear you right?

                Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
                I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
                —Spike Milligan

                by polecat on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:21:32 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You certainly did not hear me right (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  polecat, taffers

                  You suggested the NCAA had responsibility for the safety of the athletes of the football program. I pointed out that the victims were not athletes of the football program, and technically are not part of the NCAA's jurisdiction.

                  Any given day kids from all over are loaded on to buses by their schools or recreation centers or churches etc. and taken to college campuses for sports camps and similar "enrichment" excursions. The primary responsibilty for keeping those children safe rests with school/rec center/church etc. The host college has secondary responsiblity to maintain a safe environment for those visitors, and any others to the campus. NCAA or accrediting bodies don't get too involved in those events, even when a kid is injured or even abused.  What happened at Penn State is unprecedented and extraordinary, and thus NCAA is taking a rather unprecedented and extraordinary look at how they can have an impact.

                  As to the cover-up, or the looking the other way, or the river of denial - no doubt the pride in the football program and importance (financially and otherwise) it played for both school and community, and the "fame" of its coaches all contributed to folks acting like the "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil" monkeys.

                  from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

                  by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:41:25 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

    •  and check the diarist's comment history. (0+ / 0-)

      Just sayin'....

      "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

      by G2geek on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:20:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I disagree........strongly. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sunspots, happymisanthropy

    Paterno had knowledge and clout. He failed to use it for anything other than himself.  

    The system can't work when the participants are greedy self centered glory hounds. MFers.

  •  You are asking people to think deeply about (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers, ChurchofBruce, ebohlman

    a topic they've been trained to react to purely emotionally.

    Noble, but probably futile. Especially around here.

    You can call it "class warfare" -- we call it "common sense"

    by kenlac on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 08:51:53 AM PDT

    •  But we need to "think deeply" if we want true (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hardhatmama, raincrow

      reform.  Thank you

    •  Here's how it protects kids in the future (6+ / 0-)

      That football program clearly has gotten so big, so important that the prospect of coming forward to protect kids from being raped paled in comparison to it.  

      Don't believe that?  The janitor who witnessed the act said that it would have been like going against the President of the United States.  Don't believe him?  How about the fact that donations to Penn State INCREASED after the allegations and charges became public.

      Everyone needs so distance and some perspective.  The way to get it is to take away the distraction of winning games and building legacies.  Does it somehow punish people who are not directly or indirectly responsible for the abuse and it continuing? Yes.  But the vitimization of losing a team is NOT on equal footing with the pain and suffering of the real victims.  And I think that's the lesson that needs to be learned.

      •  I'm not arguing that football must stay because (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        raincrow

        possibly innocent people will be harmed.

        I'm arguing that if we make this all about football, we will miss the real opportunities to protect future children

        •  No, i get it. It's not about football (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          taffers, ahumbleopinion

          But it's not NOT about football.  If a less popular, less pedigreed sport had been involved, the pressure to cover up, look the other way and generally ignore evidence or speculation probably wouldn't have been as intense.  

        •  but (0+ / 0-)

          as long as football is more important than protecting children, children will never be safe.

          That is why Sandusky was covered up for so  many decades, because they wanted to protect football at the expense of children.

          To deter criminality, you must be able to threaten what the criminals care about.

          Medic Alert: Do not resuscitate under a Republican administration.

          by happymisanthropy on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:32:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Even if PSU only covered up for Sandusky (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ChurchofBruce

            because of football (which I still am not certain--there is evidence these guys stupidly believed he wasn't a pedophile and thought they could handle it better than the professionals), how were Child Welfare workers who investigated the 98 report cover up for football.

            I think we are being unfair to a large group of people who allowed Sandusky to exist to say they cared more about football than children.

            We need to look into how people are trained and what procedures are in place when an accuation is received.

            PSU should never have even had an opportunity to "cover up".  If the proper professionals would have seen the signs earlier, this may all have been avoided.

      •  Problem is (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        taffers, Catte Nappe, Back In Blue

        you just described every big-time college football program in the country.

        Football programs are too big. It's a societal thing, not a Penn State thing.

        "Maybe: it's a vicious little word that could slay me"--Sara Bareilles

        by ChurchofBruce on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:53:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I wasn't "trained" to react in any way. (4+ / 0-)

      My reaction is from knowledge about what happens to many children who survive sexual abuse at the hands of the people they believe they can trust.  To worsen the problem, even the people who were responsible to make sure things like this don't happen, turned their backs for fear of losing that almighty dollar.


      The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

      by nupstateny on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:32:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There's nothing wrong with an emotional reaction (4+ / 0-)

        but if that reaction is not accompanied by thought, then solutions do not occur.

        Certainly we should all react with horror. But if we feel that retribution by itself solves anything but our personal need for catharsis, we will be letting down other children long into the future.

        I wouldn't try to convince anyone not to shut down Penn State football. But I'd consider them badly naive if they thought it was going to prevent anything like this from happening again somewhere else. Justice should be a combination of the punitive and the preventative. By focusing solely on the punitive we lose the opportunity for systemic change. Punish, yes, but don't let that be the end of the process. I fear that for too many people the focus on personalities and reputations is the entirety of their interest.

        You can call it "class warfare" -- we call it "common sense"

        by kenlac on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:43:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Very well said--said in a paragraph (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          raincrow, Catte Nappe

          what i've been trying to say with a novel

        •  No, you're absolutely right. Shutting down (0+ / 0-)

          the football program wouldn't even prevent it from happening there, what alone anywhere else.  It would drain the swamp so that they can start over on the right foot.

          You can't prevent it from happening, but you can take steps to try to stop the abusers, and they didn't.


          The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

          by nupstateny on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 12:31:24 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Interesting blame shift (4+ / 0-)

    So, PA has a rampant disregard in the area of protection of children?  Proof?  Link?

    My I remind you that PSU still had the implementation of the Cleary Act in draft form in November of 2011 -- nearly a decade after passage.  And, the Athletic Dept/Football program had refused to participate in any of the "training" that PSU conducted with other Depts?

    Name another charity besides Second Mile embroiled in a similar fiasco?  Just a question.

    Despite your "support" of PSU sanctions, expanding the indictment to the entire State as the "root" of the problem strikes me as a reach.

    Somebody said Party! I got excited. I love Parties! Especially Parties with exclamation marks! Now I'm sad because there's not a Party! h/t AnnetteK ;-)

    by EdMass on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 08:56:25 AM PDT

  •  You raise some good points (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers

    It was really the Second Mile program that should have been protecting the kids. Most youth and children's programs are supposed to have stringent guidelines and education on identifying and reporting such problems, and it should have been expected more so in an organization that specifically worked with at risk kids. As to Children's Services lapses, I'm more inlcined to cut them some at least a little slack, knowing the challenges staff in those government agencies face. Not to say they shouldn't be facing some examination and correction.

    On the donations to the AG/Gov, that doesn't seem to be from the foundation, but from board members of the foundation. Still shady, but not as outright illegal as it would be for a non-profit to be directly making campaing donations. ;)

    from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

    by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:04:13 AM PDT

  •  Thank you! A very thoughtful and well argued (5+ / 0-)

    diary.  My husband is a PSU grad and for years he, like many others, revered Paterno.  And, like many of his cohort, he is disgusted over the way PSU handled the whole Sandusky scandal.  But I do think Taffers is spot on.  Where was the school system when one of the victims reported abuse, but the mother was told that 2nd Mile supported their football program and reporting it would mess up things for other kids?  Where were social services when Sandusky's foster/adopted son was being abused?  I agree that PSU needs to be slapped hard in this matter.  They need to lose their football program.  And they should not be allowed to restart a football program for at least 10 years.  But, to ignore all the other agencies and government officials who should have been vigilant during the time Sandusky was allowed to prey on children, would be doing exactly what PSU officials did -- hiding their heads in the sand and hoping the matter would simply go away.  If you live in PA you should be vocal that a full investigation of Sandusky's crimes, beginning with the Governor be started immediately and not stop until every agency or official involved is accounted for.

    •  It bothers me that the trained professionals (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Catte Nappe

      throughout this scandal have not been the focus of how this guy continued to gain access to these poor children.

      PSU and Paterno screwed up morally and legally.  They deserve all possible anger and disdain.  but we need to focus on the professionals who actually are trained to see and stop this.  He founded a Children's Charity for crying out loud.  The state placed over 20 kids in his home.  Paterno failed, but so did many others.

      •  This strikes me as a "tree falling in forest" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WheninRome

        argument.

        No one publicly complains, PSU officials conceal what they know, suppress complaints, State agencies follow their protocols and review reporting requirements for child welfare charities.  

        Nah, this is all about PSU.

        Somebody said Party! I got excited. I love Parties! Especially Parties with exclamation marks! Now I'm sad because there's not a Party! h/t AnnetteK ;-)

        by EdMass on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:25:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  As the Freeh report stated (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      taffers, S F Hippie, raincrow

      It was PSU officials that blocked the involvement of "other agencies and government officials"  involvement.

      Somebody said Party! I got excited. I love Parties! Especially Parties with exclamation marks! Now I'm sad because there's not a Party! h/t AnnetteK ;-)

      by EdMass on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:19:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  PSU hands are not clean--I readily admit this (0+ / 0-)

        However, the Freeh report states PSU in no way interferred with the 98 investigation.  This was the lost opportunity for the professionals to stop him.

        And I never understood which agencies Freeh was referring too.  Because PSU decided to not report the 2001 accusation, i didn't understand how they "blocked" anyone.  They did worse by not reporting.

        •  Victim 6 (0+ / 0-)

          1998

          Jerry Sandusky Trial: "Victim 6" testifies about "icky" shower encounter

          After Victim 6 testified, the prosecution called Ronald Schreffler, a former detective for the PSU police department, to the stand. Schreffler testified that he took Victim 6's mother's complaint about the shower incident in 1998 and said that he had eavesdropped on two conversations between Sandusky and the boy's mother.

          Schreffler said he heard Sandusky tell the mother, "I wish I could ask for forgiveness. I know I will not get it from you. I wish I were dead."

          Suppression by PSU...

          Somebody said Party! I got excited. I love Parties! Especially Parties with exclamation marks! Now I'm sad because there's not a Party! h/t AnnetteK ;-)

          by EdMass on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:37:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The police department is like any city police (0+ / 0-)

            department.  Freeh's report states no one at PSU influenced the outcome of the investigation.  

            •  Then why (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              shaharazade

              did the PSU Detective not report this to the "appropriate" non-PSU police and agencies.

              Tired of your excuses.

              Bye

              Somebody said Party! I got excited. I love Parties! Especially Parties with exclamation marks! Now I'm sad because there's not a Party! h/t AnnetteK ;-)

              by EdMass on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:49:06 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  This continues to be the problem. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ChurchofBruce

                When someone disagrees with the approach and penalities, they are attacked as apologists and excuse makers.

                This diary quickly devolved into "kill football", and not, "how did so many miss for so long".  

                While it might feel better to "kill football", it will actually be better if we fix how Sandusky fooled so many (and not just PSU)

    •  Does anyone understand (4+ / 0-)

      that thousands of people in central PA will be out of jobs after PSU loses football "for at least 10 years?"

      Does anyone understand there aren't any alternative employers there, and never have been?

      Does anyone give a crap that people completely unrelated to PSU and its football program will lose their homes and their futures because other people who live snugly in other places have decided that they should pay the price for abuses committed by Sandusky et al,  PSU, Second Mile and the state of Pa's hubris?

      Killing off PSU football is symbolism, nothing more.  It won't stop  child abuse or child rape ... hell, it won't even stop child rape in Central County.  Logic dictates that if you want to help that, you should start with the stupid people at the school who tried to talk a victim's mom out of reporting Sandusky; and with the people who were hired by the state specifically to help children, who can't seem to find their hands in the dark, much less a molester.  

      And killing football at PSU won't send a message to other football programs, because  no one ever believes their program, their employer is at fault.  Besides that, we know that the "death penalty" isn't a deterrent in crime, is it?

      But it will kill the dreams of families who did nothing worse the live in Central Pa by killing their jobs.


      My disclaimer:  I don't give a rat's ass about football.  Anybody's football.  I just don't like that the shit from this storm is going to fall on the innocent instead of the guilty.

      •  Nobody gives a rat's ass (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Progressive Mom, ebohlman

        Not around here.

        Because, you know, those people are guilty by association for having staked their livelihood to college football. Which is, of course, the root of all evil. So, yeah, fuck their football-dependent asses.

        Do I really have to put here?

        I'm in favor of a one-year death penalty, just as a message. But the "kill the program" crowd just hates football.

        "Maybe: it's a vicious little word that could slay me"--Sara Bareilles

        by ChurchofBruce on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 11:00:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I don't think that anyone is gleefully (0+ / 0-)

        anticipating a loss of jobs by people this program may employ.  But the fault of jobs being in jeopardy isn't the fault of people calling for the programs dismantling.  The fault lies squarely with those who let the program down by operating it in such an irresponsible way.  

        •  I honestly believe, if even 1 child would (0+ / 0-)

          benefit from shutting down PSU football, nobody would argue for anything less.

          I simply have not seen any evidence that ending football will remotely resolve how this happened, or prevent another victim.

          I do see the potential for a comprehensive investigation into everyone and everything revolving around Sandusky to create viable corrections and preventions.

          •  Yes, you've made your position quite clear. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            taffers

            And I don't think that a broader scope of investigation and shutting down the football program are mutually exclusive.  The fact that you don't see how one child could potentially be helped in the future is not evidence of a factual claim.  

            If you are unwilling to admit that major mistakes on the part of the football program and administratio require major consequences, that's your opinion.  but to say that the football program shoud remain untouched just because you can't see the benefit in shutting it down is kind of short sighted.  

        •  That sounds a bit like (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          taffers

          "those people who lost their jobs because of Bain Capital didn't lose them because of Bain.  They lost them because their own management sold them to Bain in such an irresponsible way."

          Yes, the fault of jobs being in jeopardy in State College falls squarely and directly on those who call for the program's dismantling.

          I'm pretty sure no one is going to send Sandusky's neighbors to jail for his crimes.  Or his wife, even, apparently.

          Why are some people so eager to hurt the residents of Center County over the crimes of someone they didn't even know?

  •  Without the money flowing to the (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers, WheninRome, polecat

    football program, those responsible for monitoring the activities of their employees would not have looked the other way.

    It was that program that allowed this tragedy to not only happen, but to thrive.

    Shut it down.


    The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

    by nupstateny on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:23:38 AM PDT

  •  Why not both/and? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers, Catte Nappe, Kentucky Kid

    Placing Paterno's blame squarely on him does not mean that we cannot also pursue other invertigations. There is a thread that runs all the way through ... from not enough funding for things like the state agency to the charity turning a blind eye on its founder and biggest fundraiser to the university worshipping Paterno and the football program.

    I used to think that we should not kill the football program but have changed my mind with all the other information that has come out. The whole program was based on using the players and turning a blind eye on anything that in, any way, detracted from the program. I do not believe that what happened, both Sandusky and the the discioline of the players was a secret.  It was unvoiced officially but people talk. The program only taught everyone, from the coaches to the players to the janitors to any critics, that people are inconsequential to the ultimate glory of the game. In whatever circle this is taught ... sports, business (Enron, Bain, etc), research (Tuskegee, Nazi human experimentations) ... the only thng that has any credibility is to shut that particular program down. It does not always happen ... actually is does not usually happen, but that is neither here nor there.

    I had in my own small way tried to justify the program, but I will no longer be an apologist for the PSU football progam.

    "Life without liberty is like a body without spirit. Liberty without thought is like a disturbed spirit." Kahlil Gibran, 'The Vision'

    by CorinaR on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:30:06 AM PDT

    •  I'm not apologizing for anyone, and agree PSU (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ebohlman

      deserves all the outrage it is receiving.  But, as you say, there needs to be other investigations, and I haven't read about anything other than "end the program" talk.

      If we continue to make it about football, those who do not follow this closely will believe it was a football scandal and believe everything is now fixed.  PSU football is over.

      We can't let that happen

      •  You are right (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        taffers, Catte Nappe

        Somehow, in my mind, your second paragraph got squeezed between the first and the third.  That should be your lead ... but I was wrong, so I apologize.

        We are on the same page.

        If there were rumors, they were shut down and fast ... read about the former head of student discipline, remember what the janitors said, the grad student who timidly reported (and as hired when others were more qualified), the mother who was stonewalled.  It took uncommon guts for the victims to come forth.

        "Life without liberty is like a body without spirit. Liberty without thought is like a disturbed spirit." Kahlil Gibran, 'The Vision'

        by CorinaR on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:49:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Also, if there were 'rumors', why didn't any of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Progressive Mom

      daily reporters assigned to PSU ever look into any of it.  It would have been the story of a lifetime

  •  Looks like 2nd mile is terminating itself (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers, raincrow
    May 25, 2012 – The Second Mile, a 35-year-old nonprofit dedicated to helping young people reach their full potential, has requested court approval to transfer its programs to Arrow Child & Family Ministries, interim CEO David Woodle said today.
    Under this proposal, approximately $2 million in current cash assets will be transferred to Houston-based Arrow to fund programs in Pennsylvania for about one and half to two years, Woodle said. Additionally, an on-going program Endowment and some program related non-cash assets will be transferred. On May 25, attorneys for The Second Mile submitted a petition in the Court of Common Pleas of Centre County, Orphans' Court Division, outlining the proposed transfer of programs and dissolution of The Second Mile. Court approval could take several months.
    http://www.thesecondmile.org/...

    From the agency taking over:

    [6/23/12] “I founded Arrow Child & Family Ministries 20 years ago because of my personal experience growing up in the foster care
    system. And while I have been very open about the trauma and abuse I experienced as a child at the hand of my mother’s
    live-in boyfriend, it wasn’t until two years ago that I was able to speak about the sexual abuse I endured. For victims of
    child sexual abuse, healing is a life-long journey, but I pray the Sandusky victims will find the strength and forgiveness
    needed to walk that path.
    “I also want to commend Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly and the people of Bellefonte and Central
    Pennsylvania for their willingness to believe a child. Puzzling actions or subtle words are often signs of deeply hidden and
    embarrassing pain. We as a nation must listen to these innocent cries and stand strong against child predators regardless
    of their social, economic or church status.
    http://www.arrow.org/

    from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

    by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 09:34:49 AM PDT

    •  This is a good step. Hopefully, they will not (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Catte Nappe, raincrow

      be able to hide what they knew and how they handled reports

      •  Looks like they plan to remain accountable (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        taffers, raincrow

        From the same statement

        After this transfer of assets and programs, The Second Mile will continue as a legal entity and will continue to cooperate fully with any investigations. In addition, The Second Mile is now in the process of selling property. After that sale is completed, The Second Mile will prepare a Petition to the Court proposing a final disposition of the remaining assets,

        from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

        by Catte Nappe on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:03:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Odd how many commentators seem to miss (5+ / 0-)

    the salient point of your diary: if the authorities responsible for protecting against Sandusky missed him, how many other pedophiles are being missed by these same people? Playing football, not playing football, famous, not famous... all of this is secondary to the question of "what else is NOW going wrong in Pennsylvania?"


    The Internet is just the tail of the Corporate Media dog.

    by Jim P on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 10:49:21 AM PDT

    •  Your statement is exactly where the focus needs (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      raincrow, Jim P, ebohlman

      to be.  All else is secondary to the fact that a pedophile operated right under the noses of those best equipped to stop him.

      Unless the lessons of how are learned, and the fixes put in place, nothing that happens to PSU will help protect 1 child.  but the danger will be everyone patting themselves on the back because they took down a big name or program, and everone believing they have "sloved the problem" of how it occurred.

  •  Have to leave now but I will check back later if (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe

    there are any comments I can answer.  Appreciate the discussion

  •  Penn State won't be losing football even for a day (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers

    That option is on the table, as they say, like nationalization of our banks was on the table in September 2008.  

    Mitt Romney '12: Berlusconi without the sex and alcohol!

    by Rich in PA on Fri Jul 20, 2012 at 11:32:31 AM PDT

    •  I do agree with this statement. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rich in PA

      Both the NCAA and the B10 are simply protecting themselves from having to "take a position".  by saying "everything is on the table", they have built a wall to stop anyone from attacking them for taking any position.

      As time goes on, I believe both will announce some type of punishment, but fall far short of ending football.  But they will be able to claim they really considered it as possible.

  •  Yeah, you are right, sorta... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taffers

    ...definitely about Second Mile and accountability. The questions need to be asked, and an investigation similar to that Mr. Freeh did needs to be done with regard to who knew what and did what when.

    Having said that, though, I think you are overlooking the major way in which football is central to the story. Sandusky would have been just another nobody if he didn't have his connections to the school, the team, and Paterno. Everything the football program touched was sacrosanct. Without it, the perp wouldn't have gotten his non-profit, his access to children, or his protection. To say that football was only part of the story is to overlook this one crucial element. I think Second Mile is a much bigger part of the story than we have seen in the media--you're right there--but by no means does this make PSU a lesser part. There's plenty of guilt to go around without making the assignment of it a zero-sum game!

    As I've said elsewhere, the maddening part of the whole story for me is that I could not get away with what the school and the coach--and evidently the non-profit--did, or rather didn't, do. I'm a mandatory reporter, and I would be criminally liable if I chose to ignore even the hint of a report that something even bordering abuse of a minor had taken place. In fact, two weeks ago I had to turn over a third-hand report of abuse where I barely had a name of the abused. The law is what it is precisely because of who people like Sandusky are: predators who try to use their power and reputation to get the rest of us to question what children say. What he used for leverage was football. Paterno, the school, and Second Mile apparently were willing to let him use that leverage. I don't know about the whole football program. But I would sure like to think that there are a few people connected with it whose stomach is just not in the program right now, seeing how it had been used.

    •  I agree with you--it is not a zero-sum game... (0+ / 0-)

      However, how many articles have you read about this scandal that involve anyone or any program other than Paterno and PSU football?

      If the overall coverage changes and allows those that haven't followed this as close as many here to understand that this about so much more than a coach and a team.  That this is so much more than just a football scandal the way Ohio State selling jerseys was a football scandal.  Then I have no issues with the football focus as a portion of the whole.

      As I've stated, my fear is that people will think, PSU football has been shut down; well that solves that issue.

      I just haven't seen any accountability assigned to anyone or any program besides PSU football, Paterno and the 3 leaders of PSU.  

      However, it appears 2nd Mile and a few others will soon receive some scrunity, as the victims begin to look for justice.  This scrunity should have come earlier and from Pa. legal reps--not victims lawyers.

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