Ken Connor

At least eight lives have been scarred forever because not one adult had the courage to shout stop, or yell "what the hell do you think you are doing?" We raise our children to believe that adults have their best interests at heart, are there to protect and care for them. This is particularly true of authority figures such as coaches. Not only were these boys victimized by a man they looked to for guidance, they were betrayed by other adults who had the power to put a stop to the abuse but didn't. And why? Because the witnesses feared for their jobs? The University’s reputation? The bottom line of the football program?

It is a sad testament to the character of the Penn State organization and its students that the main concern expressed in the immediate aftermath of these revelations has been the fate of Coach Paterno's football legacy. Where are the protests on behalf of the victims? Where are the tar and feathers? Where are the adults who were supposed to protect our children? The apathy and self-centeredness that has been exposed here is breathtaking and should cause us to engage in serious moral and spiritual introspection.

It has been said that America's universities represent the future of our society. If that's true, and if Penn State is representative of other universities, then may God help us all.


Ken Connor

Ken Connor is Chairman of the Center for a Just Society in Washington, DC.