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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Running The Rapids At Tear Creek (Happy Valley)

Nittany Lion Shrine - Penn State panorama
Photo: Bill Ames

Tonight Joe Paterno was fired as the Head Coach of Penn State. Last night I posted on this subject and I was more angry at the press and the way they were handling this whole had become a feeding frenzy. But tonight I feel differently.

Paterno, in my opinion was not guilty of a crime but he failed those children who were raped on moral grounds...he should have called the police. He could have prevented...God knows how many more sexual assaults on children by just calling law enforcement but no, for whatever reason he chose to look the other way.

In 2002, according to his OWN Grand Jury Testimony...a Graduate Assistant Coach Mike McQueary walked into the Football Locker Room Showers at Penn State and caught former Penn State Defensive Coordinator Jerry Sandusky sodomizing a 10 year old boy while both were in the showers. McQueary is a former Football Player, he is nearly 6'4" and well over 200lbs but instead of helping that boy, he left him there with Sandusky and went to his office to call his Dad...I really have questions about how a 28 year old man could abandon this helpless child...
Mount Nittany in fall
Photo: Bill Ames

His Dad (again this comes from McQueary's OWN GJ Testimony)  told him to come see him right away at his home so he did, he left the building.  The next day they met with Paterno and told him what had happened. Joe then passed the info to his boss, the Athletic Director...which was his minimum legal requirement/responsibility then promptly FORGOT about the whole incident allowing Sandusky to still hang around the Football Program until 2 WEEKS AGO! That is over 9 more years since that boy was raped in the shower. just seems like more could have been done but hey, that's the way it happened.

And here is what's worse...Sandusky was allowed to bring more boys on campus through his Charity The Second Mile...that whole's unforgivable...and for me, impossible to understand. I don't know if Paterno (and school officials who had also been informed of the shower incident) didn't fully understand the seriousness of all that had happened or perhaps they are all losing their marbles and don't understand. Maybe...and this seems VERY unlikely...they just didn't care. No matter what or how though...It should  have NEVER happened!                                                                                       Beaver Stadium white out Notre Dame Penn State
The Trustees had to fire JoPa tonight and not let him coach Saturday. Some will say that is unfair...that he did so much good for the university...and he did. That he did deserve a send off for all he has done for the school....But there are more then a dozen former victims out there and it would be unthinkable to allow a 105,000 people Pep Rally, fans cheering and chanting his name. No..he blew it and it's just SAD. 
Penn State University Old Main in Summer
Photo: Bill Ames

All he had to do was make one phone call to the police and Sandusky more then likely would have NEVER raped a boy again. It makes my blood boil...But I do understand how awful that situation must have been for that GA to walk into that scene and witness that. 
I am not totally sure but in my own situation, I believe a witness stumbled onto the scene as I was being beaten and raped because I recall some commotion, voices and  shouting  while it was going on...but that's it. I don't know what would have happened if someone would have tried to stop my particular situation...and we will never know. Aand neither will the folks at Penn State....                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             


  1. So many conflicting thoughts are going through my mind now...

    I have to say, there is something very strange in that none of the PSU employees and officials went to the police but reported the allegations to the higher instance within the institution. It's almost like they refused to acknowledge what was going on. And if you're the top dog in the hierarchy, by the time it reaches you third, fourth or fifth hand, it doesn't even sound like an eye-witness account, but like a rumor.

    Predators do not always come in the "simple" evil form of physical violence; very often victims are manipulated, coaxed or intimidated into some form of consent or thinking that they somehow share the responsibility for what happened. Did McQueary hope that what he saw wasn't what he thought/knew he saw?

    However, the fact that they did report it seems to indicate that yes, they did indeed know what was going on and recognized it for what it was. It is therefore no wonder that the entire chain of command is going down now, all the way to Spanier. Paterno just happens to be the biggest figure of them all and thus gets the most publicity, although one has to say, "really, Joe? this is how you're going down??" And I just read that the police did investigate Sandusky a few years ago, but that no charges were pressed. How does that happen?

    I am not condoning anyone's actions here and I usually even refuse to form an opinion until an official investigation has been carried out because only those who were actually there know what happened. I am just trying to wrap my head around the whole nasty thing, and hoping that it gets resolved for the sake of the victims and their families.

  2. C- You are of course correct...the "fog of war" syndrome applies here in that when something so horrific, hard to understand occurs our minds want to tells us we are seeing something all together differ.

    The damning aspect of this whole thing concerning McQueary and Paterno is the information came from their OWN Grand Jury Testimony which has been released publicly.In it, McQueary states graphically and in GREAT, disturbing detail what he witnessed, And then what he did after that as far as speaking to his father, leaving the building and telling Paterno the NEXT day. So this was NO rumor, this was a first hand eye witness account and Paterno's statements backed up McQueary's.

    So it is impossible for me to understand why these men didn't act more forcefully to either help that boy as it was happening (McQueary) or report it to the police the very next day (Paterno,School Officials) is a tragic mess.

  3. It would be nice if you gave me photo credit for the three photos you use in this article ;-)

    1. Bill My sincere apologies. I credited the 3 photos taken on the ground to you. Let me know if you took the aerial photo as well but per your comment, you mentioned 3 photos so I made an assumption on which 3 they were. Thank you for contacting me, they are lovely photos and I appreciate them very much....T