Well, finally, once, I agree with Dethtoll.
In the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal, the NCAA has dropped trou and laid a steamy one on Penn State.
All of the college's wins between 1998 and 2011 are null and void. The college is banned from bowl games for four years, it's taking a huge hit in scholarships, and finally it has to pay a $60 million dollar fine.
This is a long, slow, painful punishment that may starve its football program and affect its place in college athletics (and academics) for years. Joe Paterno died a disgrace. Jerry Sandusky will likely go to prison for the rest of his life, possibly deep in a hole for his own protection. Penn State and college football fans are torn up by what's happened here.
All I can say is... it's not enough.
It is not enough.
The punishment falls well short of the mark. Penn State's whole sports program should be shut down permanently. Jerry Sandusky was permitted to continue molesting children because the school was afraid of a scandal that would damage their football program. The school should be punished for it, and for creating a culture in which football is more important than the well-being of children.
This is what happens when you let the cult of sports take root. Sports is an exercise in self-nullification, an activity so completely devoid of meaning that any cultural value is as empty as the Penn State staff's souls. What could anyone possibly gain from watching large hairy men slam into each other as they vie for control of balls? And why have we built an entire degenerate culture around it?
Makes me sick just thinking about it.
Well, finally, once, I agree with Dethtoll.
Well said, dethy. Well said.
Yay I agree too <3, albeit he ruined it a bit with the last paragraph. Why go diss sports in general like such?
Because it needs saying. All sports ~ except French Cricket ~ are shit.
I dunno. As an outsider, it seems to me this is going to hit them where it hurts, and hit them hard enough they will feel it for decades. They have been reduced to a non-entity in an area that was their pride.
Anyway, maybe they ought to focus on getting better at academics. Because that's what a university is for.
I'll never understand the hold sports has on society. Is it any wonder people are so fucking stupid when we devote more time and resources to watching hairy dudes play with balls than we do actually focusing on education and bettering ourselves mentally? All the physical acumen in the world's not gonna invent a rocket ship.
My problem with this is that "MOAR PUNISHMENT" doesn't...really help. The damage is already done: you can't unabuse kids by inflicting more punishment on their abusers, you can just satisfy the (apparently fairly innate) human need for VENGEANCE.
For something like the sexual abuse of children, fear of punishment probably won't stop you: if you're of the mindset to fuck kids, you're not mentally healthy. If you're already past the basic human concept of "OMFG THAT IS WRONG" (which you'd pretty much have to be to abuse kids), then you're probably waaaay past the point at which you think "oh but I'm worried about the punishment": all it's gonna do (if anything) is make you even more careful not to be caught.
I would personally prefer to see more focus on what's being done to stop this happening again (i.e. better screening, offers of confidential psychiatric help, encouraging people to come forward sooner, or establishment of anonymous helplines etc), whereas what I'm seeing is more of a "see how badly we're fucking up this school? Yeah. So if we catch any of you other fucks, we're gonna REALLY fuck you up" approach, which isn't actually the same thing.
I realise that taking any stance toward child abusers other than BURN THEM is always going to be controversial, but still: driving them further underground doesn't really help. Getting them the psychiatric help they clearly fucking need (coz mentally ill, see above), BEFORE they actually abuse children, would seem a vastly more useful approach. The ultimate aim shouldn't be to "ensure child abusers are appropriately punished", it should be to "prevent child abuse occuring".
I mean, by all means heap on the vengeance, but don't confuse it with an actual solution.
This isn't meant to punish the individuals responsible for the abuse and cover-up, though. The criminal courts are already handling that. It's meant to punish the fans and the culture surrounding university sports that both condoned and encouraged this horrible thing to be swept under the rug for a decade. If you're going to value something as useless as sports over the well-being of children, then no, you don't deserve to have any sports until you learn some goddamn priorities (and no, I don't think four years is enough; it should be another decade at the very least, the same amount of time they let Sandusky prey on kids).
It's the equivalent of cutting off a kid's WoW account until he stops flunking.
DDL, you're not seeing the bigger picture (there's a shock.)
The problem is what happened at Penn State was more than one man's sickness. It was the result of a culture built upon football and glory more than anything else. Remember, Pennsylvania is a huge football state, and Penn State was one of the biggest names in college football. Joe Paterno was considered an American hero, which is why nobody really batted an eye the time he pooped himself. The school covered up Sandusky's abuse because it valued football more than the well-being of children. When the sports cult has such a deep hold that child molestation is secondary to avoiding a scandal, it stops being about the person hurting children and it starts being about the sickening fuckups who enabled him. If anything, they're worse. Sandusky's fucking sick in the head, and as much as I like the idea of beating pedophiles until they shit themselves I recognize that they need help, even if that help involves throwing them in a deep hole for their own protection. But the people who knew it was happening, and decided to ignore it or bury it because FUCKING FOOTBALL? They deserve all the punishment they're going to get, and more.
The school's sports program should be shut down permanently. If I had my way the school itself would be shut down -- you saw same as I did the riot they had over Paterno's firing, because how dare you fire someone for not doing more to stop child abuse, HE'S JOE PA! HE'S GOD! FOOTBALL IS EVERYTHING! Anyplace that fosters that kind of culture is as sick as Sandusky and the only thing that will rectify that is to shut the whole thing down and salt the earth.
So...let's say there are other schools where this is also happening (let's be honest, it's not entirely unlikely).
Are they now going to be tempted to
A)come forward about it and have their entire sports programme ruined forever, or
B)bury that shit as deep as they can because HOLY SHIT LOOK AT THAT
You're also forgetting the basic human response of "this is horrible, but if I can just ignore this for long enough it'll be someone elses problem", which in this case is true: the punishment basically fucks over the entirety of the university's sports programme for the forseeable future. Unless you're assuming that people who haven't even registered for their sports programme yet (and who now won't anyway) are endorsing child abuse, this simply sticks a fuckton of punishment on people unconnected with the entire case.
It doesn't necessarily reduce child abuse at all, which was my point.
BlueSpiral: Punishing "the fans and the culture" sort of implies that they ALL knew this was going on (like, in their tens of thousands), that this was a wholly open secret, which thus begs the question of...seriously? I mean, in the sum total of fans of a given football team, there must be a decent few police officers and probably child support workers, which I'm assuming (if this is correct) willingly ignored this child abuse because YAY FOOTBALL.
I mean, if that IS the case, then jesus. But if that is the case then surely you want to actually charge them with something, or at the least fire them from their jobs, because (particularly in the case of police/child workers), that is a job-losing lapse in judgement.
Reading this seems to imply that very few people actually knew it was going on (and that those people have been actually charged with the actual crimes that they committed). About the worst thing I can find regarding the rest of the school is the protest in support of paterno which dethtoll mentions, but the wiki doesn't make it clear whether the child abuse allegations, or his role in them, were confirmed beyond doubt at that point. And there's a world of difference between "how dare you accuse my coach of concealing abuse" and "hey, so what if he concealed abuse: yay football!"
(though dethy suggests it's the latter, so I'll go with that)
So..while 4000 people is presumably less than the entirety of the school's current and future athletic programme, those 4000, or at least a sizable percentage of them (herd-instinct calibration factor and all) are pretty douchey, yes.
But again, they're not the entirety of the schools current and future athletic programme, so a fairly excessive degree of "cutting the nose to spite the face" seems to be going on here.
And again, it's more likely to drive other universities with similar problems into massive 'sweep under the carpet fuckin ASAP' mode than it is to foster a culture of openness. Give people the "hard but right choice" and the "easy but wrong choice" and they generally go for the wrong choice. Making the hard choice even harder doesn't help this much.
Still, before you get all raging at me dethy: I'm wholly with you on the "child abuse is bad" thing (just..you know, in case you doubted), and based on the riot it does look like at least a few people genuinely did support individuals who valued sport over stopping child abuse, which is pretty horrific. Taking their ball away will certainly punish those rioters, but also a fuckton of other fans who were probably as horrified by the abuse and the coverup as everyone else. It's like arresting a mother because her child won't behave (which, believe it or not, they have done here in the UK).
Ah...look, if I'm honest, it's pretty obvious that the school's football programme would've been irreparably tainted by this whole affair anyway, so it was already doomed, and I guess the punishment really makes what was going to happen anyway simply more official, but really: I just don't think MASSIVE PUNISHMENT is ever really the way to go.
It's reactive rather than proactive, and there's often a sense of vicarious delight in the way people react to punitive measures: BURN THEM HARDER, LONGER! KILL THEM WITH AIDS BEES, which I kinda find objectionable (hence why I'm chirping up and apparently annoying you again). The response shouldn't be a righteous "OH YOU GONNA GET IT NOW", but more "I am deeply saddened that this ever was allowed to happen", followed by putting the individuals concerned somewhere to prevent them doing it again, and trying to work out how it could've happened in the first place.
Punishment is often basically revenge, and revenge is ultimately pointless.
Plus there's the whole "driving it further underground" thing, which is a concern.
Anyway, sorry for being objectionable yet again.
Even if they didn't know it was going on, they would've been totally down with it, if the riots over Paterno getting fired are anything to go by. And yes, that shit needs punished. The only problem I see with the NCAA's stance is that it isn't going far enough. Playing sports is a privilege, not a right, and it should be treated as such. When that privilege has been abused to such a gross degree as this, it needs to be taken away. Permanently.
You are seriously trying to claim that punishing a school for covering up child abuse is only going to foster more child abuse? Really? That's your argument?
Nobody has made me scream into my hands as much as you have lately. You've got missing the point down to a science, boy.
Why is this so hard to understand? The school was punished because they knew about it and did nothing about it and tried to cover it up because they didn't want to tarnish the school's good name. All this would have been avoided if they had turned Sandusky's ass in at the very beginning. The school might've had its good name tarnished for a bit, but then life would've gone on and people would've forgotten. But no. Staff members willingly became complicit with Sandusky's crimes and because of that, they did more to drag the school's name through the mud than simply turning Sandusky in to the cops ever would have. And now Penn State is going to have to live with that. If I were an up-and-coming athlete looking for a football scholarship I wouldn't want to go to Penn State just because of how they mishandled Sandusky, let alone that I wouldn't even get to go to a bowl game.
Last edited by dethtoll; 25th Jul 2012 at 17:22.
Look, this is more then just simple punishment - the penalties here aren't merely "Nail the bad guys to the wall". The cops get to do that part of it.
These penalties are being handed down because Penn State was "football first" in everything. Straight up - It has, for years, been a Football team with a second rate university attached. The primary attraction is the football team - their merchandising, their branding, their identity - the university is built completely around their football team.
Ever head about PSU's top notch engineering program? Neither has anybody else, because the whole damn university is football centric.
That is why these are being handed down. The Football program was so central to the entire existence of the university that covering up anal rape of young boys in their showers was preferable to having their football program exposed as having a pedophile rapist coach.
That's why these penalties are being tossed down. It's that 'football first, last, and only'. This is a nuke being dropped on the culture of PSU - and it's one very well fucking needed, because it's that culture that made the coverup happen. Football at PSU has been more important to the university culture there then actual education for decades, and since it's clearly reached a point where it's also more important than child molestation, something needed to be done.
I tried to be as fucking clear as I could, and even fucking APOLOGISED to you, which I would've thought you'd jump on like the ridiculous internet angry man you are.
Seriously, it's like you go out of your way to be the most fucking idiotic kneejerk fucktard EVEN WHEN I'M FUCKING AGREEING WITH YOU.
Then by all means enlighten me, because it's clearly not as obvious to me as it is to you.
Also, if you could make it clear what it is that you THINK I'm saying (as opposed to what I'm actually saying) that would help, coz clearly dethtoll doesn't have a clue.
What the fuck is wrong with you. That isn't a question, either. Because no matter how you look at that post, you're full of shit.
Ah, ok. So you're a "KILL THEM WITH AIDS BEES" person.
Fair enough, there had to be one or two.
So imagine this hypothetical scenario:
You have an auditorium full of people, some of whom maybe are having thoughts of child abuse, or suspect that a friend or relative is having such thoughts, or maybe is already abusing children.
You say to these people:
"Ok, so if any of you are child abusers or know of any child abusers, come forward now: we'll obviously have to prevent the offenders from interacting with children, but we'll do our best to provide counselling and help."
Some whispers go around, people are undecided: it's a horrible situation to be in, but if they can get help for their friends/family, then maybe they should?
BUT! BEFORE THEY CAN REPLY
"Actually, people: scratch that. Anyone who comes forward now will be set on fire. Also we will set your family on fire because hey: that'll learn 'em to be associated with child abuse, even unknowingly."
Now the question is: are you now more or less likely to get people coming forward?
I am suggesting that you are now LESS likely to have people come forward.
Dethtoll apparently thinks I am suggesting that everyone in the auditorium then goes "HAY LETS GO RAPE KIDS THEN".
Yes, child abuse is horrific. Nobody is questioning this.
All I am suggesting, and I repeat, this is ALL I am suggesting, is that excessive punishments (such as ones that punish an entire school) are probably less likely to encourage abusers or potential abusers in other schools (or people who suspect members of their school), to come forward, than a more moderated approach. Especially because statistically this is probably not an isolated single-school incident.
You can disagree with this suggestion (and I suspect you will), but that, and only that, it what I am suggesting.
DDL: Yep. Same shit you said before, only presented in an even more mindblowingly stupid way. Stop before you hurt yourself.
FTR, I think AIDS bees are too good for pedophiles. I'd rather throw them all in a deep pit full of brown recluse spiders and let nature do its thing.
Last edited by BlueSpiral; 25th Jul 2012 at 19:54.