Thursday, November 10, 2011

Shower of filth

Locker room showers

I have been sick to my stomach since yesterday morning when I read Maureen Dowd's column about the Penn State child sexual abuse cases.  She deftly wove a child's perspective throughout the paragraphs and, at one point, I literally threw the newspaper down because I was so distressed by the explicit description of one of the incidences of rape.  Yes, rape.  I'm sure you're aware that there was an eye witness to one of the crimes.   After hearing and then investigating the source of a repeated "slapping" noise, a 28 year-old coaching assistant witnessed a ten year-old boy being subjected to anal intercourse in the shower.  His response? He walked away.

Now, imagine that ten-year old boy is you (or one of your three sons).  Put a face on that child and consider for a moment that maybe, even with the noises being emitted by the running water and the disgusting old man who is raping you, he managed to hear the witness to this crime as he approached the horror scene.  Now, accept the fact that your could be hero, savior, walked away and left you to be brutalized by a pedophile.  

There isn't enough water in all the world's showers to wash away the filth that was knowingly present in Penn State's football program.  Perhaps those supporters of the program, and their rightfully shamed head coach, should consider who the innocent victims were in this situation and riot on behalf of the children whose only crime was being involved with an organization designed to provide them with "help and hope."


  1. I can't help but think this is more of a societal problem than a Penn State problem, really. The reaction being wrong, and consistently wrong, signals to me we, as a society, have lost our way. We've become too insulated, too isolated and when we come together it seems to be in outrage.

  2. There we have it - both the reason to moderate comments and the reason to not moderate comments. Thoughtless and thoughtful. Thank you both.

    @toyfoto - I agree. We've become a society that is perpetually connected electronically but socially separated. Time for some changes, I hope.

  3. That a grown man could walk in, see that scene and leave to call his dad is just staggering. It boggles the mind. I'm not sure what my father would have said to me if I made that call, but I am certain that the tone in his voice over my inaction would have been the kind of deep, deep disappointment that no son ever wants to hear in his father's voice. "You just left?"

    I'm not a big sports fan, but I spent a lot of time driving this past week and heard a lot of sports talk radio. The sports world is reeling. Paterno was admired by so many. Really idolized as a guy that turned boys into men. Good men. The general feeling is that Paterno may have done enough to satisfy the letter of the law by reporting the incident to his superiors, but he completely and totally failed in his moral obligations. He could have and should have done more. Do you think Paterno would have let any of his grandsons spend some time alone with Sandusky?

  4. @toyfoto- people have been covering up rapes for a long, long time. I actually think that our society is finally getting a handle on how to approach this problem. The focus is more and more going to the children: making sure they understand what is inappropriate, understand they are not at fault and shouldn't be ashamed if something does happen, and understand that they should tell someone they trust and keep telling till it stops. I'm not saying that we live in a society where kids don't get abused, but comparing today to 50 years ago, we've come a long way.