Did he do enough when his boss, whom he told, did nothing? Should he have done more? Why didn’t his boss and others who may have known do something?

The sexual harassment allegations being made against Herman Cain, exposes a peculiar phenomenon also present in the scandal that has forced Penn State Icon, Joe Paterno to retire. Although both of these men are being accused of despicable behavior, people have rallied to their sides as if they are unfortunate victims.

The revelation that Paterno, an icon in the sport of college football, had knowledge that his former coaching assistant, Jerry Sandusky, was sexually abusing boys should have been devastating to the students at Penn State. These students should have been shocked that their hero did not call police when he learned that a coaching assistant was taking sexual advantage of troubled boys enrolled in a sports program. Instead of lamenting the callous act, the students held a pep rally outside the coach’s house.

It was a disgusting display.

This article makes a comparison between this case and the way the Catholic church handles it’s sexual misconduct cases.

  1. #01- bobbo, OCCUPY DVORAK: what if "we-all" number our own posts and post seriatim ourselves? says:

    Interesting questions in the header. Let’s parse:

    Did he do enough when his boss, whom he told, did nothing? /// The article says, and I agree, the law does not require more. After that, its up to his own morality. I can imagine facts that would make me decide either way for myself. Its very sad how often people get fired and have a ruined life because they do “the right thing.” given the Coach is not right now being immediately FIRED, tugs me in the direction that the moral outrage/pragmatism for our hero would have to be very, very high to overcome what he knew would be a non responsive perhaps punitive response. Surprised, in fact, he did as much as he did.

    Should he have done more? /// Anonymous reporting perhaps. some abuse is “not that bad.” Devil lurks in the details.

    Why didn’t his boss and others who may have known do something? /// I’ll never know. It would be only the right thing to do for so many reasons. The only thing that makes sense would be some kind of negative consequence to the Coach for taking action. We don’t have enough facts. Homosexual affair between Coach and Assistant makes sense but is purely hypothetical on my part.

    • Cap'nKangaroo says:

      My belief, with the facts and statements so far, is that is more of a case of they (the administration and possibly JoePa) wanted to keep a lid on the scandal to protect the reputation of the football program and the school.

      Also, the graduate assistant never followed up after passing on what he saw in the shower.

      The cover up will probably do far, far more to sully the school’s reputation than this incident in 2002.

      • Cap'nKangaroo says:

        and in keeping with Bobbo’s current jihad, the above post was #4 and this one is #5

      • karenfaye says:

        The inaction of all possibly caused more children to be abused. I am outraged at the behavior of the staff after being made aware of a crime; and not just a crime, but what can be described as one of the worst.

    • Cursor_ says:

      When nothing was done higher up he should have reported it just as he would do with any other crime to the police.

      It was wrong that he did not report it. Those kids had it bad enough, they did not need to be molested on top of it.


  2. jpfitz says:

    Paterno shouldn’t be on the field for the game this Saturday. He knew of the raping of a ten year old boy in the shower. Disgusting and horrific actions by both the rapist and Parterno.

    Let me at him (Sandusky) with a pair of pruning shears.

  3. Cap'nKangaroo says:

    “Instead of lamenting the callous act, the students held a pep rally outside the coach’s house.”

    To be clear, some students rallied to his defense. Not all, quite possibly not even a significant minority of students.

    People rallied outside the courthouse when Michael Jackson was being prosecuted for alleged child sexual abuse. Casey Anthony had her champions.

    Of course here, Joe Paterno isn’t accused of being a perpetrator, but of not following up after passing on the information. This was in 2002, but I understand there was an even earlier incident in 1998. And while he is only the head coach of the football team, he is the undisputed face of Penn State and carries more weight in the town than the entire university administration. If he had wanted to follow up to learn what became of the investigation, he undoubtedly could have. But he chose to forget about it, if not help bury the story.

  4. brm says:

    “Legal” and “ethical” aren’t equivalent. The sooner Paterno supporters get that through their heads, the better.

    disclaimer: born and raised in PA, former PSU student.

  5. McCullough says:

    Just following orders cannot be an excuse, ever. He is as culpable as the cop who covers for his partner in a crime.

    Zero tolerance for anyone who knew and didn’t have the balls to speak up.

  6. brm says:

    Anyone else think this might just be an elaborate promo for an upcoming SVU episode?

  7. NewFormatSux says:

    I haven’t followed this too closely as to what Joe knew. He did inform someone, just not the police. If this was a friend of his, I imagine he didn’t believe the story. If it was someone I knew, I would hope it wasn’t true. I probably wouldn’t want to ask them about it.

  8. orion3014 says:

    no one gives a shit about child abuse until it happens to them…

  9. NewFormatSux says:

    Back to back headlines at Salon.
    Is the media reporting on the Penn State scandal to hurt conservatives? One insane person thinks so


    Jerry Sandusky and Joe Paterno, registered Republicans

  10. AdmFubar says:

    and he’s gonna get to retire! i wonder if he gets his retirement in one lump sum…

  11. moss says:

    “and he’s gonna get to retire” — No. Actually he was fired, tonight.

  12. What? says:

    It seems many people think the ends justify the means, especially when it comes to entertainment (to include sports).

    “Supporters” of Casey Anthony probably were more horrified by an apparently corrupt prosecution than cared for her personally. If the government brings forth a corrupt, and what should be illegal, case against someone, that government should suffer mightily. Anthony detractors were also supporters of “the ends justify the means”.

    Frak that!

    • Olo Baggins of Bywater says:

      There are contrarians for everything, those who ignore simple truths and unequivocal facts and data.

  13. Dallas says:

    “..people have rallied to their sides as if they are unfortunate victims…”

    Are we talking billionaires who are asked to pay 2% more in taxes?

  14. Observer says:

    Joe Paterno immediately reported the allegation to his superiors.

    Jerry Sandusky has not been convicted of any wrongdoing.

    Joe Paterno has been fired.

    • MikieV says:

      Joe Paterno was informed that Jerry was seen “playing the rusty trombone” on a 10-year-old in the school’s showers… and didn’t feel he needed to do anything other than pass the report upstairs, because Jerry had retired from the school’s staff.

      Joe couldn’t confront Jerry with the accusation, and see what Jerry had to say?

      Joe couldn’t bar Jerry from using school facilities until he had given a clear accounting of his actions?

      Joe did the absolute minimum he was “required to by law”, and that is why people are upset – because their hero did the “absolute minimum”.

  15. Animby says:

    “the law does not require more” I’ll let one of the lawyers actually answer but I always thought that if you were aware of a crime and did not report it then you became an accessory.

    In any case, the school and Paterno have left themselves wide open for some expensive civil suits. Of course, Paterno is eighty some years old. By the time it gets through the courts he won’t care…

  16. The0ne says:

    Good for Penn State. Good for the students supporting the coach. Not so good for the kids but hey go football right. While I enjoy sports more than you pathetic nerds here I thin this great coach should go down in flames if evidence proves he has done them. Screw the sports, screw the pride, screw all those stupid students supporting him. I wish them all burn in hell 🙂

    Remember, we’re talking about kids being abuse. I don’t care who you are, you should be dead imo.

  17. jpfitz says:

    Your point is?

    So what happened to the DA prosecuting these pederasts?
    Disappeared or put in the chipper by TPTB at (cough, cough) prestigious Penn State.

    • Hub Cap says:

      The firings so far are the tip of the iceberg. Many law suits will be fired, the Dept of Education will investigate, and I expect many PSU higher-ups who ignored the warnings will be crucified… as they should be. I wonder how many board members have something to hide?

    • Observer says:

      Facts, not opinions.

  18. Duder says:

    No one deserves to get screwed the ass at 10 years old, but those students might need to know what it’s like to see someone defend the person who screwed them in the ass.

  19. GregAllen says:

    I gotta give the Penn State Board of Trustees props for doing the unpopular but right thing.

    If only the cardinals and bishops in the Catholic church had had the same courage to do the right thing.

  20. Rick says:

    I believe Penn State deserves the NCAA Death Penalty.

  21. dvdchris says:

    One thing I have never seen answered or addressed is why on earth are there 10 or even 15 year old boys in the showers at a state university at all? Does anyone know?

  22. Rick Cain says:

    The NCAA is obligated to give PSU the death penalty. There is no worse crime than a decade long pedophilia/child rape scandal covered up by the University and the football program.


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