Posts Tagged ‘sexual abuse’

The recent scandal at Syracuse regarding assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine is not welcome news for students, faculty, alumni and the school administration, especially in wake of the debacle at Penn State University. These allegations are extremely serious and the actions taken by the university cannot be compared to those by officials at Penn State. It does not seem as though the accusing victims told officials about this nor does it appear as though any university officials witnessed any inappropriate behaviors by coach Fine. The police contacted the university and subsequently conducted their own investigation and found no wrongdoing on the part of the coach.

The difference between the allegations regarding Jeff Sandusky and the allegations concerning Bernie Fine is that school employees at Penn State actually saw Sandusky abusing children, did not report it to police and sought to cover up the crime. The accusations regarding Bernie Fine are extremely serious and have been taken as such by the university. Chancellor Nancy Cantor in her letter to the university is correct that the school has an obligation to ensure that the allegations are true and that Fine is not being falsely accused. Placing Fine on administrative leave does not conclude that he is guilty, but allows for his presence not to be a distraction for the university or basketball team.

The accusations, if true, would be detrimental not just for the university, but would mean that innocent children were victimized. But we do not have all the answers and should let the police conduct its investigation. It is important that the university fully cooperates even if the investigation sheds a harsh light on the university.

Do you think the university is handling the scandal properly?

-Brysan Brown

I will safely assume that no one has lived under a rock the last few days and has at least heard about the scandal in Penn State, if not been following it closely. Whether one agrees on whether Joe Paterno or “JoePa,” as Penn State students like to call him, should have been fired or not, you should agree that he and the other employees of Penn State should have reported the sexual abuse against children to the authorities immediately after the crime was witnessed.

As I hear each new development in this case, I  cringe.  What happened to those children was and will always be a disgrace. Penn State has a lot of damage control to do, but the violence and destruction that took place in University Park following Paterno’s firing only adds another black eye to the university. I do not know if I agree with the argument by many that the way Paterno was fired was disrespectful, but I can understand it.

However, I find it disturbing that many Penn State students who actually agreed with the firing of Paterno were too afraid to voice their opinions. And who can blame them when their peers were turning over news vans and smashing car windows? The destruction that occurred and the damage that was done does nothing to help Joe Paterno, Penn State and, more importantly, the dozens of victims of the suspect Jeff Sandusky.

On Friday night, Penn State students took a huge step in the right direction when an estimated ten thousand students came out for a candlelight vigil held not only for those victimized in this particular case, but for all victims of sexual abuse worldwide.

-Brysan Brown