Coach Paterno – WDTPRS POLL

UPDATE 10 Nov 0320 GMT:

I just saw a news flash that Penn State has sacked Joe Paterno effective immediately.  I’ll close the poll, below.


Hugh Hewitt tonight is covering the situation with Penn State and Joe Paterno.  There is also a lot of discussion of the scandals that have torn at the Church.

I have read a bit of the grand jury report on Jerry Sandusky, to which Hewitt linked, and I had to stop.

Paterno knew everything.  Paterno had been told about Sandusky when he was seen … I don’t even want to write it.

Mr. Hewitt is asking callers …

Should Coach Joe Paterno be allowed to coach the rest of the season?

  • No. (76%, 319 Votes)
  • Yes. (25%, 106 Votes)

Total Voters: 421

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  1. Jacob says:

    Paterno needs to go. The top brass of Penn State need to go. The people on the board of trustees who have been playing fast and loose since the crisis began need to go.

    As my brother said yesterday when we were talking about it, these people in athletics and the university are just completely divorced from reality. The perfect example is the grad assistant who witnessed the alleged act in 2002. He went home to talk to his dad and then they went to see Paternal to the next day. Just completely divorced from reality.

    God help these people, God help us all.

  2. Jacob: That’s all I needed to hear. I voted no.

  3. Peggy R says:

    Strange that these abuses were first found out about the same time the Catholic Church was reeling from similar abuses. But Penn State stayed silent. I don’t follow NCAA football, but I know who Joe Paterno is. I’d heard of Sandusky too. (Are they Catholics? Their names sound Italian and Polish, respectively.)

  4. Will D. says:

    Heads need to roll over this. The crimes that Sandusky is accused of are wicked, indeed. Had the school done the right thing, and sacked him and reported him to the police at the earliest opportunity, they might have remained untainted. By turning a blind eye and playing dumb, they’ve made themselves culpable as well.
    Sadly, this is similar to what happened in parts of the Church. If the rotten apples had been dealt with promptly and severely, everyone would have been better off. Instead, the abusers were naively believed to be rehabilitated and the incidents hushed up.
    Lord, have mercy.

  5. ThomasL says:

    In fairness to Mr. Paterno, it’s misleading to say “Paterno knew everything.” He knew of one alleged incident from the grand jury report (all of which is highly disturbing). With that said, he should’ve done more given what he knew.

    If I have the time later, I’ll explain my “yes” vote to the question.

  6. bbmoe says:

    Paterno hasn’t literally coached any game for years. He’s not exactly a figurehead, but his listing as “head coach” is primarily for the record books. He is, without a doubt the most powerful person at PSU. My point is, forget the coaching question. He should have his “records” stripped retroactively to March 2002. He should be listed anywhere and everywhere with a big fat asterisk next to his name. The PSU program should be shuttered.

    What gets me: no one bothered to even find out who the little boy was. He was a little boy, and these guys who had it all, had the adoration of millions, the respect and fear of their professional colleagues, and money out the wazoo, would not ever know his name. He was just a piece of meat to them like he was to Sandusky.

    MacQueary has learned a horrible lesson. He did the right thing, at first, but I’m sure he came to understand that he was forced to live with the disgusting morals of his superiors because he waited for them to do the right thing. He will live the rest of his life wishing he had gone to the police himself.

  7. LarryPGH says:


    The AD and the VP “knew of one alleged incident”, and their lack of action in that context was sufficient to have them indicted.

    Is Paterno legally culpable here? It seems that the answer is ‘no’. However, is he morally culpable? Sufficiently so to warrant his dismissal from his position? That answer seems to be ‘yes’. Why give him additional time with the team?

  8. albinus1 says:

    As someone snarkily commented on Rod Dreher’s blog: If only football coaches were allowed to get married, this would never happen.

  9. PostCatholic says:

    Paterno is a paragon of Catholic leadership of his generation. He only did as hundreds of bishops his own age did–or rather, didn’t as hundreds of bishops his own age didn’t.

  10. Random Friar says:

    @PostCatholic: This seem sad phenomenon has occurred in multiple school districts across the country (in much higher rates), in the Boy Scouts, in any kind of organization that serves youth, especially, although not limited to that. I have no idea what was in anyone’s mind. I really wish I did.

  11. Catholicman says:

    Paterno is being scapegoated. He was made aware of an allegation against a long time friend and did exactly what he was supposed to do. He reports it to his direct superior and the head of campus police (in PA, campus police have the same authority as municipal police). Remember, at this point, it would basically have been one man’s word against another’s (and the victim, if he came forward). Paterno is told the situation will be investigated and he would have no reason to believe it wouldn’t be. We don’t know what, if anything, he was told was the result of any investigation. Clearly nothing happened to Sandusky, so should Paterno have gone back to the AD and police captain and asked what the result was or did he believe that meant there was nothing to the allegation? Maybe he should have asked, but people are saying that now with perfect 20/20 hindsight. It’s easy to pass moral judgement now, 9 years later, that he should have done this or that but the reality is none of us were in the situation.

  12. nola catholic says:

    As one of the posters said above, it’s completely unfair to Paterno to say he “knew everything.” Everyone involved has conceded that Paterno did not “know everything.” Did he know enough to report to the police? The Penn State board certainly thought so. What is perplexing is the way the board handled this, despite indications that Paterno was concerned about it, alerted those who had the ability to do something about it, was assured that something would be done about it, and that he did not have very much information. Paterno’s testimony that his knowledge was limited apparently correlated with the testimony of the grad student who notified him. Pennsylvania law says that the head of the school or institution (i.e. the President and the AD) is responsible for notifying the police when such events are reported by a staff member. Paterno reported them to the AD and he and the administration failed in their duty to report it to the police, while assuring those below them that the events would be handled properly and looked into.

  13. Cavaliere says:

    A Virginia Congressman is calling for an investigation into the Penn State scandal citing the Federal Clery Act.

    Clery Act (20 USC § 1092(f)) requires colleges and universities to prepare, publish and distribute an annual security report in which there is a disclosure of all criminal offenses reported to campus security authorities or local police agencies. University officials are required to report suspected criminal offenses to campus security authorities. Additionally, each institution of higher education is required to develop and distribute a statement of policy regarding the procedures followed once a sex offense has occurred. Clery Act compliance is the responsibility of the U.S. Department of Education.

    The failure to report the 2002 allegations would appear to break Penn State’s own reporting methods for sexual abuse on campus. According to the publication “Policies, Safety, & U” at Pennsylvania State University, 2011-2012, the University Police are responsible for compiling the annual report required by 20 USC § 1092(f). The report further states that “this document is prepared by information provided by University Police, local law enforcement agencies surrounding main campus and alternate sites such as, Student Affairs, Residence Life, and the Athletics Department. Each entity provides updated statistical information.”

    And as Nola Catholic also stated above, Joe Paterno did exactly what he was supposed to do. He reported what was told to him to the Campus Police, in this case that official was also the Athletic Director. Thus it would seem there was no further need for him to contact outside law enforcement because according to PSU policy that would then be the job of the Campus Police.

    Further it should be rememebered that at this point no matter how heinous these crimes appear to be, Jerry Sandusky has not yet been convicted and is free on bail until he receives his day in court. If guilty he should be punished to the full extant and may God have mercy on him if indeed these disturbing accusations are true. However it is also true there have been prominent cases in the past where horrible cases of abuse had been claimed, families and communities torn apart, and yet the accused were acquitted. Therefore it would be wise to wait until the case is heard in court and not the media before lighting the bonfire.

  14. Cavaliere says:

    I’m sorry I meant a Pennsylvania congressman in my previous post.

  15. LaudemGloriae says:

    Read the Grand Jury Presentment. There are sufficient testimonies, witnesses, and victims to safely conclude the guilt of the accused. A trial will only establish how many counts and how many years. Expect Sandusky to plead guilty.

    A very shaken and upset first-hand eye-witness came to Paterno’s home to tell him that he saw Sandusky having anal intercourse with a boy who looked to be 10, pinned against a wall in the athletic facility showers. This same witness was declared “very credible” by the grand jury. At a later time a janitor saw a similar scene and apparently discussed it with several on the janitorial staff. The thing was known. As for Paterno, or anyone else with knowledge of the accusations … regardless of who you did or didn’t pass the information to … could you continue to work with such a man? Could you look at him every day and not care whether or not he was raping 10 year old boys in the shower room where you both worked? Could you remain silent as he publically ran his charity for vulnerable boys, bringing them to Penn State football games and media events?

    It is a shocking indifference in the face of great evil. And now the Penn State students riot.

    Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us…

  16. PostCatholic says:

    I guess Penn State didn’t have any archpriest positions available.

  17. bbmoe says:

    The grand jury report makes it clear that the eyewitness to the crime was very explicit when he told Paterno and the other administrators what he’d seen. The administrators have now been arrested for perjury. We’ll see what happens to Paterno.

    Surely it’s ridiculous to say that Paterno, indisputably the most powerful person at PSU, “did the right thing” by merely “reporting” the incident to men who were only nominally his superiors. If he had wanted the right thing to be done, it would have happened. As it is, there was so little interest in the victim that no one bothered to find out who he was.

    As to the action of the board of trustees: they acted quickly to limit liability, but at least they acted.

  18. I wonder how the mainstream media would react if Penn State issued the following statement:

    Because the sexual abuse victims were male, the role of homosexuality has been a notable question. It is possible, however, that although Sandusky’s victims are male, thus defining the acts as homosexual, Sandusky did not at any time recognize his identity as homosexual.

    It appears Sandusky had certain vulnerabilities to commit abuse (for example, emotional congruence with children or adolescents), experienced increased stressors from work (for example, having recently received more coaching responsibilities, such as becoming a coordinator), and had opportunities to abuse (for example, unguarded access to minors).

  19. Andy Milam says:

    I have not read every response, so I may be parroting others here, if that is the case, I apologize.

    I think that under the circumstances, Joe Paterno needed to be relieved of his duties as head coach. Even if he had direct knowledge of one incident, he should have reported it to his superiors AND to the police. The abuse of the innocent is unconscionable. There is no excuse for what Sandusky did, but there is also no excuse for what JoPa didn’t do.

    It has been a very difficult situation for me, personally as I vetted this in my head. I was in seminary during a time when all of the allegations about sexual abuse were hush, hush. I know of instances in which priests did deviant things, but it was all heresay, in other words, I had no direct knowledge of any instance, save one. And that instance had already been dealt with by the proper authorities.

    As I weighed in my mind the correlation between PSU and the Catholic Church, which is similar, I came to the conclusion that if the clergy were being shown no quarter (by and large) by the authorities, then neither should the leadership at PSU. So, Joe Paterno had to go. Graham Spanier had to go. Mike McQueary has to go. Anyone who has had any knowledge AND didn’t act should be at the very least relieved of his duties all the way up to and including prosecution, if necessary.

    So, looking at this from a Catholic point of view, I think that several things need to be accounted for:

    1. 100% accountability
    2. An independent body should investigate the whole of PSU athletics
    3. Findings should be made public, it is a public institution
    4. Any person having any knowledge and failing to act should be summarily dismissed.
    5. We need to be merciful, we should forgive those who have done wrong and help them to find peace, in a just way. If justice means losing a job, ok. If justice means prosecution, ok. If justice means something in between, ok.

    JoPa is not above the law. While he may have been a “god” at PSU, he is one man. And one man cannot be more than the whole. Should he have been able to retire and save face? Well, my answer to that is no. That hasn’t been the case for any Catholic priest, bishop, or cardinal, so why should it be the same for JoPa? We as a society must be consistent.

    All of that aside, we must focus on the well being of the vicitims. Many now are young adults and those young people should be taken care of, their needs should be met, their rehabilitation should be assumed by Penn State.

    Most of this will be vetted over the coming months and this certainly isn’t the end of the story, but I can honestly say, JoPa needed to go. Immediately.

    N.B. For those out there that think Card. Law got off easy for being made Archpriest, I would seriously take a closer look. He lost one of the most influential positions in the Church, certainly in the Church in America. He had to relocate halfway around the world, to a position which is purely ceremonial. Card. Law has no real voice and he has no real authority any longer. Also, he is close to the Holy Father. While I cannot speak perfectly about this, I would be willing to put dollars toward donuts that Pope Benedict is frequently checking up on him. So, let’s not think that Card. Law got a free pass. I, for one, don’t think that he did.

  20. Catholicman says:

    Isn’t it amazing that we can definitively declare what Paterno should have done 9 years ago? Perfect 20/20 hindsight is such a wonderful thing, isn’t it? There must be 2 very different grand jury reports as the one I read does NOT make it clear that the grad assistant was explicit in what he told Paterno. The grad assistant is explicit in what he told the grand jury, but Paterno’s testimony is that there were vague references to “horsing around” and “fondling” and perhaps “something of a sexual nature”. Based on what he was told, he reported the allegation to the AD and the head of campus police and was told it would be investigated and dealt with. What else do you want him to do? If he had called the municipal police instead, would that absolve him in people’s eyes? Was he just supposed to believe an allegation against a long time friend without any supporting evidence? Should he have done his own independent investigation? We in the Church rightfully complain about how the media and others rush to judgment about bishops or priests based on an allegation but here many of us are villifying Paterno immediately. I think of the allegations against now deceased Bishop Paul Dudley about 10 years ago. He was raked over the coals in front page news here in Minnesota. When it was discovered that his accuser made it all up, that was reported on page 8 in the bottom corner. Also, I’d encourage people to actually know the facts before saying things like “The administrators have now been arrested for perjury. We’ll see what happens to Paterno.” Joe Paterno was explicitly cleared of any criminal wrongdoing in this case (from the mouth of the Attorney General of Pennsylvania). He was not indicted and there is no evidence that he will be in the future. The Board of Trustees, the media and many people are simply smearing Paterno as the scapegoat here. The Trustees spokesman was asked last night what Joe Paterno did wrong to be fired. His response was “I’m not sure I can tell you specifically. In our view, we thought a change was necessary.” Translation: “We really can’t find anything that Joe did wrong here but we need to cover our backsides because of all the heat we are getting.” As a college football fan, I know they have been trying to oust Paterno for years and now here is there chance. Instead of focusing anger and disgust at Jerry Sandusky and the actual men who covered it up, people are blaming Paterno. Sad.

  21. jarhead462 says:

    BTW I think EVERYONE involved dropped the ball big time here.
    If I were a 28 year-old graduate student, and saw THAT in a shower, I would like to think I would CALL THE POLICE, but not before I put a dent in that guy’s head.

    Semper Fi!

  22. jhayes says:

    The trustees met and the AD and the College Preident were gone.

    Now if the Church can learn how to take equally swift action.

  23. disco says:

    As for those who say that Paterno knew nothing. He knew a hell of a lot more about way worse things than Bishop Finn did and Finn was indicted. There would be a serious miscarriage of justice if Paterno and the entire PennState administration were not similarly indicted.

  24. Re: dent in the head

    I think that when it’s a case of someone you like, love, or admire, especially if obedience to authority is involved, people tend to freeze and run away and either try to forget it or try to talk and get support for their actions. Shame over seeing people naked and over seeing a crime take place is also involved. (People don’t realize how intense and how unhelpful the emotion of shame can be.) People are also trained to not get angry with people they respect and work for, so there’s that.

    But if you do see something happen like this, I think that violent action to save the kid is a lot more important than any other consideration. “What do you think you’re doing?!” and “How dare you, you scum!” are also valid if less violent responses. Anger is constructive in this situation, because it holds off all the temptations to pretend it didn’t happen and enables you to act swiftly and confidently. “Righteous anger” is an ally, even though unrighteous wrath usually is a foe.

  25. but not before I put a dent in that guy’s head.

    I agree 100%, jarhead. This isn’t the venue to go into a rant on the topic, but we’ve witnessed an alarming decrease in masculinity in the last several decades, and this is a good example of it – and I am not talking about Sandusky, but rather the 28 year old man who walked in on the rape. (I see in this de-masculinization a deliberate strategy on the part of Satan; something I am currently writing about for a Catholic News Agency column.)

    So… your point is well taken; what kind of man fails to physically and immediately defend this small child who is in the midst of being sodomized? I guess the answer is the “new male” that seems to predominate in the current feminized culture in which we live.

  26. irishgirl says:

    What jarhead and Louie V said!
    This entire thing is so sad. I’ve been listening to all the sides of the story on a local station which is affiliated with ESPN. And the anger of a lot of the callers is palpable!
    My question is: where were the parents of these young kids? Why are they not stepping up to the plate and being responsible for their whereabouts? Why did they let their children hang around with an adult male who is not their father? And where especially were these kids’ fathers in all this?
    If I were male, and I saw what [allegedly] happened in that shower, I would have run in, thrown a towel around the kid, and spirited him out of there! And after that, deck the pervert who took this child’s innocence! And finally, find out who the parents were and given THEM a good talkin’ to!
    But then, I’m only a mere female….

  27. PostCatholic says:

    He lost one of the most influential positions in the Church, certainly in the Church in America.

    Yes, some of that is true–he lost the supervision of one of the largest Catholic dioceses in North America and the attendant access and power with which it came. And he probably lost a good deal of influence in appointments made within the American church.

    He had to relocate halfway around the world, to a position which is purely ceremonial.

    What Mr.* Law did not lose was his authority in Rome. Despite covering up sexual abuse of children and even a homocide, he remained in Rome a member of eight dicasteries, including the Congregation for the Clergy, the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, the Congregation for Catholic Education, The Congregation for Bishops and a member Pontifical Council for the Family.

    Card. Law has no real voice and he has no real authority any longer. Also, he is close to the Holy Father. While I cannot speak perfectly about this, I would be willing to put dollars toward donuts that Pope Benedict is frequently checking up on him.

    Just plain not true. Mr. Law has been very involved in the work of the Congregation for Bishops and being in Rome has attended meetings of those dicasteries much more frequently. If anything, his power within the universal church has expanded. He should have stayed in Clinton Maryland as a chaplain to a convent of nuns. Instead, two popes have installed him at the top levels of church governance.

    *Mister, because I refuse to think of that man as being in anyway reverential. [I am no fan or apologist Card. Law, but I don’t want to see this approach here.]

  28. AvantiBev says:

    I do not know what Mr. Paterno knew or did not know. I do know what I KNOW!
    1. Once again we have an act of homosexual ephebophilia purposely misclassified as “pedophilia”.
    2. Once again the victims were overwhelmingly boys approaching puberty who lived with divorced or never married moms; i.e., the favorite prey of the homosexual ephebophile the fatherless served up by America’s women on a platter.
    3. Once again we are told Paterno should have “protected the children” by a media which was only a few years ago only too happy to report that a Bush nominee to the Courts was unacceptable to his Democrat Senate inquisators because he admitted that he and his wife refused to take their children to Disney on GAY DAYS weekend.
    4. We want total tolerance and non-judmentalism on lifestyle choices, orientations and acting out but we want the ugly consequences of that unrestrained behavior to be blamed without benefit of trial on a heterosexual who “should have known better” not the ephebophile,the clueless mothers, the absent fathers, or the teachers/educ establishment who every year present more and more graphic lessons on “tolerance” of the gay lifestyle to school children.
    5. We must allow every June the “pride” parades to march through our streets in all kinds of lewd, crude and disgusting get ups but we must never question how many of those parading are members of NAMBLA (North American Man Boy Love Assn) nor how much funding the parade organizers receive from NAMBLA.
    6. I KNOW that my nation has become a schizophrenic, a basket case.
    Full Disclosure: I am an ItaloAmerican, ROMAN Catholic, single woman, professional ACTRESS (well, trying to be as I struggle through the Obama depression), and I work for divorce lawyers. All of this colors how I see this case and the others.

  29. jarhead462 says:

    Louie V:

    Hear, Hear!
    I have been on this for sometime now. We do not raise MEN anymore, just besotted adolesents, walking around in “clothes” emblazoned with team logos.

    Semper Fi! (Happy Birthday, USMC!)

  30. Supertradmum says:;_ylt=AqrZM0yKrdVjuW0RyhPyHQ6MvMJ_?slug=ap-pennstateabuse-students

    So football is more important than the abused lives of perhaps hundreds of young boys…I am sick of these students and the entire system which allowed all this to happen.

  31. AvantiBev says:

    Supertradmum: That is not how I see it. These kids recognize scapegoating and another high tech lynching when they see it. These 19 to 21 year olds have had gay rights, gay days and tolerance for every kind of sexual perversity stuffed down their throats for most of their school years. (oops, pun not intended) As an actress, I must stay anonymous to continue to work but these kids are as sick and tired of it all as I am, and they are lashing out. They recognize the schizophrenia of a culture which has been telling them for 16 + years that every twisted thing is natural and normal and now turning on an 84 year old for not stopping a FORMER employee from engaging in those “normal and natural” acts.

  32. Supertradmum says:

    The news reports I read said that the students were in favor of keeping Joe, not in getting rid of him. Of course, he must go, and anyone else who knew of this. I will respectfully disagree and state that they were protesting to keep him because football is more important than abused children.

  33. AvantiBev says:

    “Abused children” is a phrase that delights the gay agenda activists because they can hide behind it and continue to call it “pedophilia” even when they victims are overwhelmingly pubescent males as they were in the American Catholic priests’ scandal.

  34. Monica says:

    The child that McGeavey witnessed being raped was 10 years old. My 10-year old son is not going through puberty. This particular rape indeed involved pedophilia, AvantiBev.

  35. Andy Milam says:

    What Mr.* Law did not lose was his authority in Rome. Despite covering up sexual abuse of children and even a homocide, he remained in Rome a member of eight dicasteries, including the Congregation for the Clergy, the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, the Congregation for Catholic Education, The Congregation for Bishops and a member Pontifical Council for the Family.

    Cardinal Law may be part of eight dicasteries, but he has no contact with children or is put into a position where he can influence those who do come into direct contact with children. As for decision making, I don’t see his name coming out on many of the documents from any of said dicasteries.

    As for Cardinal Law remaining in Clinton, Maryland…well, I don’t think that made much of a difference either, now did it. He was still visible.

    Given my druthers, I would have him in a Carthusian monestary, but alas, I think that he role as Archpriest of St. Mary Major is suitable….he is no longer an Ordinary, he may sit on a bunch of boards, but his voice became one of many, as opposed to one of one, and finally for most of Americans (unless one of us go looking) he is inconsequential.

    Then again, this isn’t about Cardinal Law, now is it. What do you think of the rest of my post, above? You didn’t comment on that.

    May God keep you close.

  36. Supertradmum says:


    I have nothing against the term “abused children” as there were four in my family, all children abused by a priest.

  37. Ef-lover says:

    LaudemGloriae says:
    10 November 2011 at 8:14 am
    Read the Grand Jury Presentment. There are sufficient testimonies, witnesses, and victims to safely conclude the guilt of the accused. A trial will only establish how many counts and how many years. Expect Sandusky to plead guilty.

    Please note a Grand jury report does not indicate or conclude on a persons guilt of a crime . A Grand Jury is called together by the DA to present evidence that one should be indicted and that there is enough evidence to stand trial, that is what the members of a Grand Jury vote for , if a case should go to trial or not. A Grand Jury is one sided you only get to hear what the DA wants you to hear.

  38. buffaloknit says:

    I have a couple of questions about this issue which others have not yet mentioned, but first I’d like to repeat what some others have said about Joe Paterno: besides follow the protocol and report things that need to be reported to the appropriate authority, what more does the law require him to do?

    Some other questions: Why exactly did Penn State allow Sandusky to keep his office after he was no longer employed by Penn state? Eventually, he was prohibited from working with folks under 18, officially, by Penn State-as someone who has more time to follow this, than I do-told me. I don’t know if this was Joe Paterno’s or his bosses’ decision, but someone certainly knew about something and was attempting to make CYA decisions. I think ultimately Penn State upper management is more at fault here than Joe Paterno with regard to *that* series of bad decisions.

    I have actually read a few pages into the linked PDF document, because as a linguist, I am interested in how people report and talk about sex abuse. I’m continually disgusted by how the media reports, well, forcible penetrative sexual assaults on women differently than those committed against men. Another disturbing level to this mess, is how Paterno and the other assistant coach talked about ‘inappropriate’ contact. Perhaps that is part of the problem? Like another commentator mentioned, the definition of “girly men” is someone who doesn’t feel shame about some things, and has a much higher tolerance for bad behavior. However, I would not have expected Joe Paterno to be the sort of de-masculinized man who uses this sort of touchy/feeling vocabulary. Who in the right-mind calls ‘anal rape’ inappropriate touching? It is one thing to use a euphemism on TV during the dinner hour, but another thing to use a euphemism in an official report.

    Call a spade a spade already.

    Finally, I would like to quickly share a conspiracy theory I recently heard, because this is after all, the internet. Penn State is the ONLY school in the Big Ten that would vote AGAINST altering NCAA rules to lift the ban on paying athletes. This is a very big deal especially since there is a giant sum of $$$ involved. Perhaps the fix was in?

  39. PostCatholic says:

    I would honestly not worry about Bernard Law being near children. He was never accused of personally abusing any, and having known and met with him on several occasions I would put such an action very far past him. What does concern me is that perhaps the worst church administrator in American history was moved to headquarters to become still more involved and that kept voting on the selection of your bishops. He is a man who loved an institution to pathological extent more than the people who comprised it, and yet he has been a large part of deciding who leads it and how. Why doesn’t that offend you? It seems to me a quiet retirement would have been much more appropriate.

    As to the rest of your post: I concur with you, fully. And in a very rare occurrence, I fully agree with Supertradmum and her analysis of the mob violence last night. It’s disgusting and depraved that some put football that far ahead of child welfare. I offer her my sincere wishes for the healthy recovery of her family members.

    Rev. Zuhlsdorf: Point taken, I can understand that I have offended. I hope I have done better by omitting honorifics instead of substituting for them.

  40. jesusthroughmary says:

    Paterno did inform his direct superior (Curley) and the police (Schultz) of a second hand report of [who knows what he actually heard]. He was then told by his direct superior and the police that the issue had been resolved. He wasn’t there, how can he insist that not enough was done? It’s hearsay coming from him. McQueary was the only actual witness, and he still has a job. After 61 years of service to hundreds of thousands of students and untold millions flowing into that school because of him for the benefit of not just sports but academics, he deserves better than a media hit job. The only reason Paterno lost his job is because the media has stirred up a frenzied bloodlust like they do whenever child sex is mentioned, and he’s the only one anyone recognizes, so his head has to roll.

    I also concur with AvantiBev.

  41. jesusthroughmary says:

    Also, Louie V, my reaction was the same. When somebody said to me the other day that McQueary should be charged as well, I said what he should have been charged with – and acquitted of – is aggravated assault. Then we wouldn’t be having this discussion. How a 6’4, 220 pound man only five years removed from being a Division I quarterback can walk in on a 58-year-old man raping a 10-year-boy and not break any of his bones is incomprehensible to me. I’m only 5’8″ and never played football and I’m going in swinging.

  42. LaudemGloriae says:

    What haunts me in the case (as revealed so far) is that two grown men on separate occasions, witnessed the rape of young boys and walked away. One of the witnesses a war veteran who described what he saw as worse than the violence of war. Even he did not so much as call the police. How, HOW do you not rescue the child and dial 911? Forget what was reported to whom. How do these two men who saw it with their own eyes not go to the police?

  43. Supertradmum says:

    I am not a football fan. I was at ND for six years and only went to a game when I was able to sit with the faculty, so I did not have to sit with the crazed students. Money and sports are gods, and even if the reaction of the Board of Trustees seems unfair to some, the entire staff should be replaced. Why do men make gods out of sports personnel, even to the expense of clarification over sex abuse of children? Anyone who knew anything should go. Period.

  44. Andy Milam says:


    Why doesn’t that offend you? It seems to me a quiet retirement would have been much more appropriate.

    Look at what I happen to think should have happened to him. I am offended, offended at what he did while the Archbishop of Boston. I think that his actions and lack of action warrant him to be confined to a life of prayer and reflection, in a Carthusian monestary where he can say Mass (he is a priest after all) and have the support of monks who will undoubtedly pray for him. As it is, the Holy Father chose a different path for him. While I don’t like it, I will accept the action of the Holy Father. Several reasons:

    1. He has no input toward children
    2. He has no archdiocese to run
    3. He is largely a figurehead with no pastoral responsibility
    a. He gets the smells and bells, but he really isn’t all that High Church, so it is kinda moot.
    b. He gets to say Holy Mass or preside if a lesser prelate/priest celebrates
    4. While he is part of dicasteries, he is only one voice among equals. There is nothing that he can directly influence, by his rank as Cardinal.
    5. He is close to the Vatican, where the Holy Father or his dignitaries can keep a watchful eye on him.

    I want to be clear, I am offended. I have been since I first heard about it. The reality is this though, with Card. Law, I think that being displaced and made simply one voice of many, his candle was largely snuffed out. As for JoPa, I am saddened, upset, but I understand that it was necessary. I pray for the victims and I hope that they can find some sort of solace.

  45. Phillip says:

    @AvantiBev at 12:15PM:

    I just read the indictment/grand jury report/whatever it is – which was harder to get through than I expected, and I have a pretty strong stomach – and I would disagree with your assertion that the allegations against Mr. Sandusky don’t involve pedophilia. He is alleged to have fondled at least one boy as young as 7 or 8, and to have been witnessed engaging in penetrative intercourse with a ten year old boy. I would not consider a typical ten year old an “adolescent.” I certainly would not consider a seven year old an adolescent. If either allegation is true, it does seem to constitute pedophilia. If the latter one I mentioned is true, he’s not merely a pedophile, but a rapist as well. This has nothing to do with the “gay lifestyle.” This is about an adult man preying on children. If the victims were girls, I doubt you would label it “heterosexual ephebophilia.” If I had children, I probably wouldn’t take them to “Gay Days” at Disney World, either. But I wouldn’t view them as needing “protection” from them in the same way as they’d need protection from a man like Mr. Sandusky. I don’t know why you’re treating these things as if they indicate a double standard. I don’t see one.

  46. AvantiBev says:

    “I don’t know why you’re treating these things as if they indicate a double standard. I don’t see one”
    I view us as a nation spending 365/24/7 declaring our non-judgmentalism toward every sexual activity; even rubbing our children’s noses in it with books written to show abnormal behavior as perfectly acceptable. Then when they are so trusting that they follow a man into a shower WE ARE SHOCKED, SHOCKED. Why? We say Paterno didn’t do enough to protect the children from pedophilia (and the teens from ephebophilia) but we surround kids with this sewage in our popular culture, our tv, our films, even books in the children’s area of our libraries and then pat ourselves on the backs for being “charitable” toward diversity.

    Meanwhile, moms turn to mentoring programs for their boys after kicking dads out or being abandoned by them. There is no father there to go looking for Junior and kick the crap out of someone he finds raping Junior. We set these kids up. There is nothing shocking about predators taking advantage of our young in this morally relativistic and over sexualized culture.

  47. arb5489 says:

    Catholicman: Thank you. The scapegoating of Joe Paterno is, at the very least, tragic, and fueled by the twisted and perverted versions of the case being portrayed in the national (and international) media. As an undergrad at Penn State that has lived in State College for most of my life, I can say that very few people outside of here understand very well just what’s going on.

    Supertradmum: In regards to the student rioters, as someone who was there last night (not participating, merely present and observing…) know that while those hell-raisers were certainly present and out of control, the vast majority of the students there were there because they are fed up with the mishandling this from both the university administration and from the poor reporting and twisting by the media.

  48. PostCatholic says:

    Andy Milam, thanks for the dialogue. The only point I differ with you on is in accepting the popes’ actions. Eight dicasteries is an extraordinary number of memberships, and Law was allowed a seat on all three which appoint–and importantly, correct–bishops. It used to be that at age 80 that one had to resign their curial work; I assume now at last Law won’t be in a role to exercise his (I’ll concede diminished) influence. As one who is now a non-Catholic, I’m much less inclined to assume wisdom in papal decisions like this, but I remember a younger self who was more trusting. In any event, I applaud your sense of your justice.

  49. Joe Paterno, meet Pete Rose. Charlie Hustle thought he was famous enough to get away with it – look where that got him. I know Paterno did no gambling that I know of, and Rose wasn’t a sickie. But the same principle applies – you break the rules, you take the penalty, no matter how rich you are.

  50. oddfisher says:

    It’s disturbing that so many Catholics seem to have one, (or sometimes both), of two knee-jerk responses to any claim of sexual abuse. 1. They couldn’t help it; it’s the culture’s fault. 2. The claim probably a lie, or at least something blown way out of proportion.

    Is there hypocrisy in a culture that sexualizes children, relativizes sexual morality, and then reacts with outrage when children are abused? Of course. Does that mitigate the guilt of Sandusky *and* the men who either chose not to know the extent of what happened, or knew and looked the other way? Not in the least.

  51. irishgirl says:

    AvantiBev @ 6:25: thank you! You said it much better than I did in my comment!
    Parents have to take responsibility for their kids–not ‘mentoring programs’! And fathers have to start BEING MEN AND NOT ARRESTED ADOLESCENTS!

  52. Supertradmum says:


    Never blame parents for the abuse of children,never. There are excellent, Catholic, caring parents who were duped by priests or boy scout leaders, or even lay teachers, and had no idea their children were in danger. It is so wrong to blame someone who loves and cares for their children. The people in my family were abused in the Sacrament of Confession, over a period of years. Take care of your judgments, please.

  53. Cavaliere says:


    But the same principle applies – you break the rules, you take the penalty, no matter how rich you are.

    Except Joe Paterno didn’t break any rules.

  54. oddfisher says:

    Cavaliere: Except Joe Paterno didn’t break any rules

    Right. He kept himself legally covered. Let’s give him a medal.

  55. Lakeside says:

    If the testimony of the graduate assistant was true, that he did in fact see Sandusky raping a boy in the shower, and that he informed Paterno of this, then, yes, Paterno should be fired. But if the graduate assistant, McQuery, saw a child being raped, why didn’t he try to stop Sandusky or why didn’t he call the police? Why is this guy getting a free pass on this? It doesn’t make sense that a grown man who actually saw a child being assaulted would not call the police but would call his father to ask what to do and then, following his father’s advice, call Joe Paterno. Remember that in 2002 Sandusky had already retired and was no longer an employee of Penn State.

    However, McQuery’s testimony might not be true. Maybe he did not actually see Sandusky raping the boy but just saw the two of them in the locker room shower area, which would have been suspicious but not a crime. Then his not contacting the police or intervening (like a man) would make sense. Then it would make sense for him to call his father and then report the incident to Paterno.

  56. oddfisher says:

    Lakeside: He may be getting a free pass from the police because they need his testimony. As for his employers, who knows? They’ve already proven the quality of their judgment. It’s hard to imagine he would make up a story about seeing a child being raped and then running away to call daddy. Evidently the grand jury found him believable. How could he have done such a thing? My guess is the answer has something to do with original sin.

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