Penn State: Saving Face Trumps Child Welfare
Jerry Sandusky was Penn State’s defense coordinator for 32 years until he retired in 1999. He is currently being accused of sexually abusing at least eight boys over a fifteen year period. More victims are coming forward in the wake of a grand jury report released on November 4th 2011 which details an ongoing investigation since November of 2008. The most disturbing allegation comes from Assistant Penn State Coach, Mike McQueary, who reported in March of 2002 when he was a graduate student, that he witnessed Sandusky performing anal sex on a ten year old boy in the locker room shower. Many other reports of Sandusky’s abuses including oral sex and genital fondling date back to 1994. These briefly surfaced and then submerged into back room, signed off files. Interestingly, in 1977 Sandusky founded Second Mile, a charity to help troubled youths. In addition, over the years, Sandusky and his wife Dorothy adopted and raised six children (5 of them boys) as well as took in foster children.
Predator on the Loose
Considering the overwhelming evidence it is clear that Sandusky is a diseased predator. Although he denies any wrongdoing claiming he was only “horsing around” with these children in showers and other locations, records of a laundry list of witnesses, alerted authority and disturbing evidence such as Sandusky phoning a young boy 118 times say otherwise.
Paterno and Co. Sweep it Under the Rug
In 2002, instead of going directly to the police, Mike McQueary reported the anal sex incident to renowned head coach, Joe Paterno. Paterno reported the incident to the Athletic Director Tim Curely. The incident was handled ‘in-house’ and never officially reported to outside authorities leaving Jerry Sandusky to claim open season on any boy he could snag into his web.
What was going through the minds of these men? Young lives were being ruined including Sandusky’s adopted son Matt who attempted suicide in 1995. Was the reputation of the Penn State sports program more important than the welfare of a minor? Apparently it was a decision that cost Joe Paterno and Co. their jobs, reputation and dignity.
Thinking Outside the Box
With so many witnesses over so many years might there have been more than one predator? How could so many turn a blind eye to atrocities against young boys equivalent to child sex trafficking? Take the case of Centre County DA, Ray Gricar, who chose not to prosecute Sandusky in a 1998 allegation and then mysteriously disappeared in 2005. If his now declared death was connected to the Sandusky scandal could one man have carried out his disappearance? Then there are the young boys. Any parent you speak to in the wake of this story will tell you that they hope they have taught their children how to avoid such a scenario. Were the victims ever taught this?
This black cloud is sure to hover over Penn State for years to come. Hopefully, it will make others more vigilant and swift to report future abuses against the defenseless.
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About the author: Matt Tomas
As a writer Matt enjoys tackling many subjects with impeccable research and creative humor. He also works as a Professional Actor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Licensed Process Server and Professional Drummer.