The media are a bunch of hypocrites. Plan and simple, and this is the truth. The same people that lambasted the man for "not doing enough" months ago are now posting heartwarming articles like the one at http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/news?slug=dw-wetzel_joe_paterno_obituary_012212 saying aww - he was a great man with that one bad thing. But now that he died, let's put it aside and remember the great man he was.
Bullcrap. You didn't care to remember his legacy in October. NOW you want to honor him? Take a look in the mirror, you vultures. The man was dying of cancer and you turned on him like a pack of wolves. Have any of you seen someone struggling with lung cancer? I have. A friend of mine at church lost a year long battle with lung cancer on my birthday in August. It was hell to watch. Absolutely awful. I beg my co-worker that smokes to please stop because I've seen how lung cancer literally eats you alive. It's ugly, painful and brutal. And while Paterno was going through that, the media ripped his reputation and legacy to shreds because "he could have done more."
So is that where we're going now? We're going to charge people for not being their brother's keeper? For not acting when we BELIEVE they should have acted? Ok then, when I was 12 my grandmother died. I was devistated. I turned to many adults to find out how to cope. You know what they said? "It's just a grandparent. This is worse for your mother. Get over it. Others are suffering more."
Ok then, at age 36 I still believe that was a rude and completely inappropriate response to a 12 year old reaching out for help. Say "I don't know" if you're stumped, but don't get your attitude on, especially with a kid. Can I haul those people in and charge them with psychological damage?
Or how about this - when my job was transferred a couple of years ago, it came to light that many things that should have been done weren't. In fact, in some aspects of my job I was improperly trained. Corners were cute and some mistakes of huge proportions were made because the programs were not being given the support they were supposed to have. Can I haul my former colleagues in and charge them with sabatoging these programs and my professional integrity for not handling them properly and for making me look like an igit to my new colleagues? Can I bring them and hold them responsible for me and my current colleagues having to go into a second year of cleaning up things that were messed up, lost or forgotten because of their negligence?
In both of these examples, I believe you'd hear more squawking than an avery with a snake in it.
And on the flip side, I'm not sure I'd even want to go there. I can think of times when I could have done better and didn't. Like Paterno, I can think of times when I just didn't know what to do, so I tried to turn it over to those that I believed had more knowledge and power, only to find that they didn't. I've failed to take responsibility. I've let people down. If everybody I failed hauled me in and held me responsible, I believe every person I ever knew would have a case against me.
The point is that we're all human and we make mistakes. We make errors in judgement that have adverse impacts on others. We hurt others with bad decisions. We let other people down by not doing enough or by letting things go when we should act but fear to because we don't know what to do. We fail people by passing off responsibility for things we should act on because we believe others are more competent to handle it. We all fall short. We all fail. If we're going to get into charging people for not doing "good enough," then we're all guilty. So what then? What do you do when every human being on earth is guilty of hurting others? What's the penalty? What's fair? What's right?
I believe that the powers that be in the Paterno case were looking for a big name scapgoat and they found it in Paterno. That was a pretty lame charge to fire him on. He admitted his fault. To tarnish him when he was humble enough to admit what he did wrong makes the accusers more guilty than he was. They played God, and they showed the whole world why they were woefully incompetent in playing the role of the Almighty.
Well, Paterno is with God now. The truth is known and the "big picture" impact of his role in this situation is determined. We on earth can no longer judge him or hold him accountable because he's already answered to the ultimate authority. So now it leaves the rest of us in the awkward situation (of our own making) to determine Paterno's legacy. Will we have the grace to remember him as the great man he was, or will we continue to be hypocrites and judge him guilty for this one error? Whatever happens, it will reflect on those of us left behind throughout the ages.
And as for the rest of it, well, I suppose this forces the media to focus on Sandusky, the real villian in this story, and not a side character.