I’ve been avoiding this but the people defending joe paterno are annoying the hell out of me. They keep saying he did nothing wrong, that he told someone and that means he was the kind of man he always told people he was. Paterno may not have done anything wrong, but he didn’t do anything right either.
Let’s leave the Freeh report out of this for a moment. In 1998, there was an accusation of child molestation against jerry sandusky. The police investigated and found nothing. Ok, at that point, maybe you don’t do anything and let it go. BUT, three years later, someone comes to you and says they saw sandusky touching a child in the showers and all you do is tell the your boss.
If paterno really had given a damn about that boy the way he did about his reputation then he should have done more. He should have kicked sandusky off campus for good and ran screaming to the police. If there is even one accusation of child molestation against someone, it should be investigated. This was the second. How the hell do you tell two people and let the matter drop? You don’t. You can’t. Children are more important than anything and they can’t always protect themselves. That where we as adults must step in, but nothing was done for eleven more years. Eleven more years of victims. Eleven more years of lives shattered. How can anyone look at that as anything but a gross failure to protect the innocent?
Even if joe paterno didn’t actively cover up for a child predator, he still burried his head in the sand. And THAT is just as bad.
So, before you open your mouth the defend paterno, ask yourself if that had been a child you knew and cared about, would you have wanted him to do more to protect that child?