Dear Penn State Idiots…

I’m talking to you, the rioters, not the people guilty of things far worse than stupidity.

First, you clearly didn’t read my blog last week about the limits of freedom to assemble. If you want to get your message across, rolling news vans only makes you look like people who can’t control your emotions. Ok, so most of you are teenagers and saying “Teenager that can’t control his emotions” is very redundant. Still, you are not as cool as you think you are.

I know what it’s like to be young and dumb. I was young once. I even went to Penn State for a while. Ok, so see my last post on how well I went to Penn State, but I was there for a couple of years. JoePa was a coach way back then too.

There’s a subtle difference between a protest and a riot. A protest is a group of people sending a message through chants and signs and the media. A riot is a way to build and release adrenaline at the expense of society. Protests sometimes succeed in creating the change they desire.  Riots, not so much. Not that they never do, but unless your riot is a form of civil war, it’s nothing more than a dangerous annoyance.

No one is going to get re-hired because you’re out rolling cars over.

It’s not the media’s fault that someone did something to warrant and investigation that revealed some people in a position of authority did not make responsible decisions and their inaction may have led to actual permanent damage to several victims. To be clear, the media did not create the problem. The problem is not just an allegation of the media. Mr. Paterno is on record admitting to his poor decision, and admitting that it was a poor decision. That decision is what resulted in his termination.

Sure the media spread the word of the legal proceeding, putting public pressure on the Board at Penn State, which resulted in their firing Mr. Paterno. That’s the media’s job, to spread the news.

The media is an important part of what makes a free country free. Sure many media outlets tend to lean one way or another politically, but very few are out there making up falsehoods and getting people fired over them. There were no falsehoods involved here. The evidence of Mr. Paternos own admission is all the Board needed to make their decision.

You, the rioters, don’t have kids. You don’t really understand compassion for children. Winning at football is not worth allowing patterns of abuse to permanently scar young boys.

Ok, winning at football is worth scarring athletes who are out there willingly risking their health for the sport. They make the choice to risk their health. Those boys who were allegedly abused could not make that choice, if for no other reason than because they were too young. I have to say allegedly because the trial of the abuser is not concluded and he’s not yet guilty. Mr. Paterno is not unemployed because of the allegations. He is unemployed because, by his own admission, he had the opportunity and responsibility to act and did not.

So, all you rioters, you’re accomplishing nothing but expressing your rage in an uninspired and uninspiring way. No one is going to rehire a coach due to the threat of riots. Rioting accomplishes nothing if it’s after the fact. It usually accomplishes nothing if it’s in support of some kind of movement. There is no foreseeable reasonable path that leads to Mr. Paterno returning to coaching at Penn State. Accept it and get over it. Your football team will recover. Some of the real victims here may never recover.

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About wilogden

Wil Ogden was destined to be a wastrel but thwarted fate. During his second junior year in high school he discovered he had a muse and a talent for writing. Despite taking almost a decade to complete a bachelor's degree by changing majors eleven times, he managed to grow up. Along the way he worked as a blacksmith, a record store manager, a candy store manager, too many years in food service, a four year stint in the USAF, and finally settled down into Information Technology, which he uses to pay the bills and support his family of himself, his wife, son, seven daughters, two dogs, three cats, six chickens, a snake, a ferret and two parakeets.

Posted on November 10, 2011, in Tripe. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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