Abused children take back seat to Joe Pa's 'legacy'

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Abused children take back seat to Joe Pa's 'legacy'

Garret McDowell

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Joe Paterno is no saint. If you cover up child sexual abuse, then I don’t care who you are or what you did. You do not deserve applause or celebration. You deserve some kind of punishment. I am a horribly ashamed college football fan, for this blind allegiance looks bad on us all. We look like idiotic, depraved hooligans that have no morals or dignity. I hope Penn State loses the rest of its games due to this reprehensible and ill-placed support.
For those of you who have been living under a rock, Joe Paterno was found to have covered up a series of child sexual abuse cases, committed by his assistant coach, for years. It was determined that he knew and did not alert the legal authorities, merely the athletic director. It is this kind of ridiculous behavior that caused one of the greatest coaches in college football history to fall from grace.
I hope you can tell that I really can’t stand Joe Paterno anymore. It is a sad day when anyone does these despicable acts to a defenseless child. It is a worse day when people who know keep quiet. However, it is even sadder when someone who could have stopped it is celebrated by the masses in spite of his or her actions. I hope Paterno faces legal action of accessory to the abuse or something similar.
More than 400 wins does not excuse your behavior any more than paying millions of dollars to a victim’s family. Penn State needs a wake-up call. I could care less about legacy and tradition. That university needs to reevaluate what kind of example they are setting to the rest of the nation. I firmly believe that the university must stamp out any support for Paterno or the other dismissed officials. We can only move on when they aren’t in the forefront.
Sadly, the real tragedy here is that more people are concerned with the legacy and job status of “Saint” Joe Paterno as opposed to the health and well-being of the victims. Even I have ranted for over 300 words about the situation before bringing up the victims. It makes me sad and distresses me greatly. These poor children have been reduced to nothing more than statistics and cases which have cost people their jobs. When their struggle is the one that should be in the limelight, they’re brushed aside as collateral damage.
I am not sure how to proceed, if I were in charge at the university. With Paterno hiring a team of defense lawyers, the victims are even less likely to be the focus of the news. While I do not wish to make a spectacle of their problems, there should be more worry and care concerning them and not what the perpetrators are doing. I have started boycotting ESPN when Paterno coverage comes on. I know I’m just one viewer, but I have my integrity by not watching for programming or the advertisements surrounding Paterno.
I hope everyone sees and can understand the point I’m trying to get across. Do not give Paterno or his cronies the time of day. Instead, worry about the real victims, for they are the ones that really matter.

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