Penn State scandal: Why Jerry Sandusky is Most Accountable


Jerry Sandusky should be the one to blame for the Penn State scandal

Nicholas Fuller

Jerry Sandusky should be the one to blame for the Penn State scandal.

The scandal at Penn State has revealed a terrible cover up that had been happening for over a decade and triggered complete shock and sadness around the country. Firstly and rightfully so, no one deserves an explanation more than the alleged victims and their families. Every single person involved in this cover up should be held accountable, accountable for their actions, and accountable for their disregard towards the safety of children.

That being said, no one should be held more accountable for the incidents that transpired than Jerry Sandusky. The lack of reporting on part of the coaching staff is unacceptable, but it is not worse or of equal ground to the actions of  Sandusky. Although Sandusky is the person who has molested and sexually abused young boys over the past decade, he is under less scrutiny over his actions than the coaching staff at Penn State—and more specifically—Joe Paterno.

Paterno, the former 46 year coach at Penn State, has been ostracized more than Sandusky has been for sexually abusing children. Is this really right? Is it not our legal responsibility to abide by the law? Paterno received reports of the abuse and did what he was supposed to—he reported it to his superiors. Yet it is ironic that the board who he reported the incident to was the same board that fired him, the same board that did not report the incident to police. What about their legal responsibilities?

Every action has a consequence, and every consequence has a result—yet sometimes the results are not justified, or are too late. Sandusky should have been locked away in prison over a decade ago, but he was allowed to roam free amongst society. He continually disregarded the law until this point today. He is a person with a history of repeated injuries; this was not one case of a person making one bad decision and being forever sorry. Instead, this was an example of a person who continually broke the law and felt no remorse for it.

So then why is the majority of the attention being reflected away from Sandusky? One, because people argue this scandal is all about Joe Paterno, because of who he is and the legacy he has left on college football. The fact that it happened under his nose for years left a bitter taste in many people’s mouths, since Paterno’s grandfatherly image completely contradicts the elements of this scandal. His accomplishments as one of the most successful coaches in college football history are now forever tarnished.  Although this is true, that does not mean people should lose sight of what happened.  Their hate and anger of this scandal is being reflected towards the wrong person.

For instance, people argue that Sandusky was unstable, and had no control over himself.  Can anyone consciously buy that theory for a second?  If Sandusky suffers from a psychological disorder, which is not a disease, that does not mean he could not have sought out help for himself.  Also, nobody knows if he does or not.  That is all just speculation,and in my opinion,speculation is unreliable.

More and more news from this case erupt every day—the most recent being the death of Joe Paterno.  It is a good thing to see people across the nation being respectful towards the coach and his family.  Although Paterno died, some good might have come out of his death.  People have begun remembering Paterno for the good individual and role model he was for his whole life.  The nasty elements of this scandal no longer seem to be sticking to Paterno as much as people once said it would.

That being said, there is only one name you need to know—and that is Sandusky’s.  A person should receive the consequences of their actions.  People should be mad at Sandusky, and people should put more of this scandal on him than anyone else.  Instead of blaming a staff for handling the situation horribly, people should use this tragedy as an example.  Next time a person witnesses similar abuse, hopefully they will say ,”This will not happen here like at Penn State, this will not happen under my watch.”