I was wearing a Penn State alumni shirt the other day, and a stranger remarked, "I see you're wearing a Sandusky perv shirt."
I used up every ounce of my self control, and I'm missing the tip of my tongue, but I ignored his comment.
My concern was more for the fact that Penn State alumni will be thought of as graduates of the "Perv University." I was always proud to call Penn State my alma mater. It breaks my heart to see, experience and read about the steady decline.
I believe that Penn State can rise from the ashes of tainted reputation and emerge as a university that exhibits academic excellence and integrity.
I was once an avid Penn State football fan. Because Penn State has fumbled that ball, it's time to transform PSU's image to a university where students desire to attend because of the academic excellence not the athletic programs.
Penn State has always had some excellent academic programs, but they were always overshadowed by football.
I was a Children and Youth caseworker, teacher and school social worker. It was instilled in me that any appearance of impropriety was to be immediately and personally reported to Children and Youth authorities.
By now, most are aware as a result of the Jerry Sandusky scandal that state law mandates that required reporters who work in an institution, school, facility or agency shall immediately notify the person in charge of any suspected abuse. The person in charge has the obligation to make an immediate report to Childline. None of that is very difficult to comprehend.
It has been my experience that a sexual predator's spouse shares the culpability. Yet Dottie Sandusky is still sitting pretty. It's not unusual for an individual to desire to help children, but normally that includes children of both genders. When an individual's focus is primarily young boys, there is an abnormality.
Why didn't The Second Mile pick up on this unusual fascination with young boys - especially since it was supposed to specialize in child care?
Of course, one can only speculate as to why former Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar decided not to pursue a case against Sandusky in 1998. This is especially true since Gricar vanished April 15, 2005.
It is not too late to save PSU and concentrate on primarily academic recognition. Individuals aspire to attend Harvard, Yale and Princeton to achieve an academic education of par excellence not because of their athletic programs. That type of academic excellence can be PSU's future.
We must assure that Penn State's survival is constant. The university assures the economic survival of all surrounding communities. All must actively support the university and demonstrate to everyone that we have been and remain Penn State proud, no matter what apparently insurmountable obstacles are placed in our path.
Be proactive in your support.