Joe Paterno should not coach Penn State University on Saturday. He should step down immediately as head coach of the football team.
Releasing a statement saying he will retire at season’s end is arrogant, vile and a slap in the face of the alleged victims of this child sex scandal.
Here is why. Legally, Paterno complied. He was given information about Jerry Sandusky acting inappropriately with a child. Paterno ran it up to his supervisors who are being accused of covering it up.
So no, Joe shouldn’t go to jail or face any legal ramifications. But where Paterno failed miserably was in not following up on the matter.
Joe Paterno is the face of Penn State. He is the head of the football team, he is a leader in that community.
I repeat: He is the face of Penn State University.
So when someone affiliated with his program is accused of a heinous act such as this….he simply cannot just walk away and like Pontius Pilate, wash his hands to the matter.
Afterall, this wasn’t a bar fight. This wasn’t some guy having a few too many drinks and hitting a parked car. This was child abuse. Sexual molestation.
After reporting the incident Paterno should have followed up. Why does Sandusky still have an office on campus? Why is he still running an organization that involves children here on campus? Why is he on campus?
No one should survive this scandal. Everyone should go. Including Paterno. His apathy was shameful.
So what good will come of Paterno trotting out his football team on Saturday for his last home game?
No matter the result, there is no honor on that field. There can be no appropriate celebration of him and his career right now. There can’t be.
A football game should be played, don’t get me wrong. Not to give some much needed distraction. It should be played because the University has an obligation. Just like it had an obligation to report the alleged abuses happening within it’s walls.
Robert Louis Stevenson wrote: “The world has no room for cowards.” Pennsylvania State University should be a part of this world.
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