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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Joe Paterno: The Fall of an Idol

Our society has many idols. They all seem to rise to this pedal stool through success in scoring the winning field goal, bringing an audience to tears with their vocal ability, commanding attention to their amazing foot work on stage, or their ability to capture an audience on the big screen. This is how we measure our heroes; One’s ability to bring in high ticket sales and box office numbers. We cheer them and scream their names. We teach our children that they are what we must all aspire to.

Not one section of our measuring stick is dedicated to moral actions. So, is it really so shocking when our celebrities are found to be success hungry, money driven individuals?

Joe Paterno and Penn State are just two more examples of this long line of fallen idols. This controversy has divided a Country into two halves. Those that are shocked at the immoral stance of these icons and those that do not expect anything more than championship wins from theirs. We see this latter group violently protesting on behalf of Paterno as they take to the streets and destroy property in the name of their beloved. They do not care what he failed to do for children that were being raped. They do not shed a single tear for the fact that eight children became victims due to everyone’s refusal to step in. Has any of these Paterno supporters asked themselves how they would feel if their child had been raped in the shower by Sandusky and found that Paterno had been told but chose to only half-ass mention it to his superior, like it was “no big deal” ? Really? Did Ashton Kutcher even process that train of thought before ranting on twitter? He is step-father to children and must love them, so why was he so quick to overlook the fact that Paterno failed eight young boys who were being raped? He himself speaks out against the sex slavery of children. I guess though, this must be different because it involved his Idol and didn’t involve his step children.

The rape of a child is not to be taken lightly people! No matter who is doing it!

Paterno did EXACTLY what the Pennsylvania law required him to and nothing more, report it to his superior. Technically, that is what he did. 

However, he FAILED. He failed at being a decent human. He failed at being moral. He failed at being a man of worth.

That is why so many of us are standing against him. We know that if ever faced with that circumstance, we would risk everything to protect a child. A career would be sacrificed, happily, if needed to save a child from such horrific abuse. However, I truly believe that if Paterno had called the police and reported the attack and was then fired for it; the whole country would have stood with him in support. He would have come out so much better than now. His reputation should be destroyed forever. The failure to do something to stop child rape when you are made aware is deplorable and should bring severe consequences.

One thing this whole travesty is showing is that this type of thing can happen anywhere to anyone. No one’s child is safe from this horror unless you are fully aware and always vigilant in protecting them. Do not leave them with people you do not know, I do not care if you idolize the adult. Do not trust them with your kid. You cannot ever undo the damage. Pedophiles can be rich or poor, any race, any age, any gender, any profession. 

Citizen Out

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