Because it's all about Penn State
Earlier this month, Jerry Sandusky, a former American football coach at the university Penn State, was arrested on 40 counts of sexual abuse of young boys over a period of fifteen years. That's bad enough, but then it came out that his superiors at Penn State had knowledge of it and essentially took away his keys to the locker room and called it a day. One of said superiors was Joe Paterno, the head coach of the football team, who had a reputation for integrity and all around good sportsmanship. Last week Penn State's board of supervisors fired Paterno rather than let him retire at the end of the football season.
If you really want the details of the main offense (contains multiple detailed accounts of child molestation): The Grand Jury indictment against Sandusky. This Washington Post article gives a good summary of the charges and who was told what when.
Paterno first says he'll resign at the end of the season. His statement in full:
I have come to work every day for the last 61 years with one clear goal in mind: To serve the best interests of this university and the young men who have been entrusted to my care. I have the same goal today.
That’s why I have decided to announce my retirement effective at the end of this season. At this moment the Board of Trustees should not spend a single minute discussing my status. They have far more important matters to address. I want to make this as easy for them as I possibly can.
This is a tragedy. It is one of the great sorrows of my life. With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.
My goals now are to keep my commitments to my players and staff and finish the season with dignity and determination. And then I will spend the rest of my life doing everything I can to help this University.
The Board of Supervisors isn't too keen on Paterno telling them what to do and fires him instead, effective immediately.
Some of the student body reacts by rioting (NYTimes article | pictures) Choice quotes:
Paul Howard, 24, an aerospace engineering student, jeered the police.
“Of course we’re going to riot,” he said. “What do they expect when they tell us at 10 o’clock that they fired our football coach?”
Other students expressed sadness instead of anger. Kathryn Simpson walked arm-in-arm with a friend, crying.
“I’m here because I just need to be with the rest of my school right now,” she said. “This is devastating for us.”
More of the student body is disgusted by their schoolmates, and holds a candlelight vigil for the victims the next day.
Sports writers are split between "But being a great coach has to count for something!" and "What the hell, Paterno."
The Onion, in its inestimable way, points out the flaw in the focus of all this coverage: Sports Media Asks Molestation Victims What This Means For Joe Paterno's Legacy
John Scalzi spells it out in small words: Omelas State University
Charles P. Pierce reacts to the pregame prayer circle at Penn State's Saturday game (The Brutal Truth About Penn State):
That barely scratches the surface, but you get the idea.
Creepy ETA from the comments: In 2001, Sandusky published an autobiography titled Touched: The Jerry Sandusky Story
Post a comment in response:
Legal Disclaimer - Site Map