"Two major events have occurred since the firing of Joe Paterno which prove that the news media are not only incompetent and dishonest but hypocritical beyond anything anyone would have thought possible.
And both revelations are about as damning as could be imagined both against ESPN, whose commentators condemnation of Paterno and demands for his firing were some of the loudest, and the school officials at Central Mountain high school, where Sandusky's Victim One went to school.
The first revelation concerns the molestation charges against Syracuse assistant coach Bernie Fine.One of Fine's accusers secretly tape recorded a phone conversation he had with Fine's wife in 2002 in which the sexual contact with Fine was discussed and where Fine's wife admitted she knew everything her husband had been doing. Fine's accuser says he took the tape to the Syracuse Post Standard in 2002 along with his allegations against Fine and played the audio tape for them. The newspaper declined to report the allegations saying that, even with the tape they wanted more corroborating evidence before they would report it. In other words the Syracuse Post Standard gave more of the benefit of the doubt to an accused child molester than the news media in general gave to Joe Paterno, a man with a polished solid gold reputation for 60 years. And there has been no outcry by any of the sanctimonious self-serving members of the media who railed against Joe Paterno focused on the Post Standard for "having knowledge of" sexual abuse and not reporting it.
It gets a lot worse. It has also been revealed that the victim took the same audio tape to ESPN more than ten years ago with his allegations against Fine and played the tape for them, No one at ESPN did a thing. For ten years. They didnt talk to their own lawyers.They didnt refer it to any child protective agency. They didnt refer it to any law enforcement agency. They did nothing.
This is the same ESPN whose commentators called for Joe Paterno's firing immediately for, in their factually challenged hypocritical world, "not going to the authorities". The same ESPN whose commentators said Joe Paterno going to the administrative head of campus police the next day with McQueary's non-specific report wasn't enough. The same ESPN who accused Joe Paterno without a shred of proof, of being aware of child sexual abuse and "not doing enough". The same ESPN that had an audio tape confirming from the mouth of the abuser's own wife, the sexual abuse of a ball boy at Syracuse university. And did nothing.
And are the same sanctimonious self-righteous group of journalists insisting that anyone at ESPN who had been aware of those tapes for the last ten years and who is still with ESPN be fired? No. Of course not.
We now know that the same media types both on television and in print who smeared Joe Paterno on their front pages with the word "Shame", without a shred of proof, did absolutely nothing when put in Paterno's shoes.
Unfortunately the second set of revelations makes it even worse for the media
New revelations were made by the mother of Sandsusky's Victim One that will forever shame even further everyone in the news media who attacked Paterno as well as the trustees of Penn State who buckled under the pressure exerted by the media mob and threw Paterno over the side to quiet them down.
Keep in mind that the fictional narrative by the press in their attack on Paterno, their reason for demanding he be fired was that he had knowledge of sexual abuse and didn't do enough when it came to reporting it, ( something that has already been proved to be completely false).
According to the mother, in a piece that can be read here, the principal of the high school her son attended, Karen Probst, was present in 2002 when her son openly accused Sandusky of molesting him and not only did the the school principle do nothing, according to the mother the principle actually tried to talk her and her son out of reporting it.
Additionally, according to the mother, Steve Turchetta, the boy's high school coach in 2002, repeatedly allowed Sandusky to come to the school and take the boy out of school not only without parental consent but without even any parental notification. And Turchetta continued to allow Sandusky to take the boy out of school even after the mother found out and protested.
The mother states that eventually there was a meeting at the school after the boy had told all to a school counselor and had gotten so emotional they finally believed him. At that meeting the mother states that when she insisted they go to the police, the school officials tried to talk her out of it. They told her to think about it and think about what the accusations could do to her family.
All of this information was available at any time any real journalist wanted to take the time to actually investigate and learn the facts. But all of them, like Sean Gregory at Time Magazine, Andy Staples at Sports Illustrated and just about everyone at ESPN except Lou Holtz, were too busy smearing Paterno to bother. It was Paterno they went after. Because it was Joe Paterno's picture that sold newspapers and got web hits, not Karen Probst's.It was going after Paterno that made the very small and sanctimonious feel very big.
The irony is, that in the end, Joe Paterno did more and with less knowledge, and did it faster than anyone connected to either the Sandusky allegations or the Bernie Fine allegations, all of whom had more knowledge that he did.
And isn't it ironic ( or perhaps par for the course) that ESPN, whose commentators like Jay Bailes and others were some of the most vocal for saying Paterno didn't do enough, had an audio tape that contained an admission of the sexual abuse of a Syracuse ball boy for ten years and did nothing.
So what will ESPN do now? Will they accuse themselves of "not doing enough"? Will they accuse themselves of allowing a sexual predator to remain free? Will there be any media condemnation by others of ESPN?Anyone hear any media condemnation? Anyone demanding people at ESPN be fired? Or will they all hide under their sheets?
So now class lets review the facts: Joe Paterno the day after getting a non-specific non detailed sanitized version of events from McQueary went to the administrative head of the Penn State campus police with Mc Queary's allegations against a man he knew and worked with closely for 26 years, without hesitating or calling Sandusky to get his side of the story. Karen Probst, Victim One's high school principle, Steve Turchetta his high school coach, the school's assistant principle, the school guidance counselor, Ray Gricar, the DA at the time who declined to prosecute, the Syracuse Post-Standard, and ESPN all had specific allegations and in the case of the Fine, a tape recorded admission of child sexual abuse and did absolutely nothing for years. These are some of the people who yelled the loudest about Joe Paterno and moral responsibility. These are some of the people who demanded Joe Paterno be fired for not doing more.
People are angry about what happened to Paterno. They should be angrier now and should demand not only the restoration of Paterno's reputation, they should demand retribution.
Journalists who falsely accused Paterno should be fired And so should anyone who had knowledge of the events surrounding Sandusky and Bernie Fine. That includes journalists and school officials.
Tom in Paine
There should be demands that Sean Gregory at Time Magazine who wrote that Joe Paterno "knew a ten year old boy was being raped in a shower and didn't report it to authorities" with no evidence to substantiate it be fired. So should his editor for allowing Gregory's dishonest report to be printed. So should an ESPN columnist named Jemele Hill who wrote her own dishonest column about Paterno simply parroting the false reporting of other journalists and making the same false claims. Anyone at ESPN with knowledge of the Bernie Fine tape should be suspended or fired. The two senators in Pennsylvania, Democrat Bob Casey and Republican Pat Toomey should be eviscerated, their offices deluged with phone calls for withdrawing their sponsorship of Paterno for the Medal of Freedom without any facts, just acting like spineless politicians reacting to the mob . And last but not least every trustee at Penn State who voted to fire Joe Paterno, which is all of them, should resign. They are the people who disgraced Penn State, not Joe Paterno.
The Penn State trustees made a mockery of every value that a university tries to instill in its students and proved, ironically that the trustees can't be trusted. They should all in good conscience, resign. If not their resignations should be demanded since it was they, not Joe Paterno who betrayed the values of Penn State,denying Paterno any form of due process and capitulating to a dishonest incompetent mob of journalists.
The day after Paterno was fired, students at Penn State demonstrated and demonstrated angrily. They knew, as college students tend to know, that a gross injustice had been done to Joe Paterno and they were motivated by something that the Penn State trustees and those in the news media either lost a long time ago or never had in the first place -- ideals.
The students at Penn State saw that the ideals preached at Penn State were trampled on by a mob of out of control self-serving journalists and a spineless collection of trustees. And they were justifiably angry. They knew a gross injustice had been done. The factually challenged Stuart Scott, reporting on the demonstrations for ESPN said of the demonstrators, "Don't they get it"? Here is a flash to Stuart Scott and the rest of the news media. They got it. You didn't.
When Paterno was given the sanitized version of the event in the shower by McQueary he went straight to the administrative head of campus police, the police agency that had the jurisdiction over any crime committed on the campus of Penn State. Joe Paterno went to the proper authority, he went immediately and he went as high as he could go. The news media, the Penn State trustees, the politicians, ESPN and everyone else who attacked Joe Paterno, given the opportunity, went as low as they could go. They will be remembered for it. And they should all lose their jobs. But before they go, they owe Joe Paterno one big apology."
Tom in Paine