The Penn State trustees are wrong to hold off on an apology to the Paterno family.
The position they found themselves in Nov. 9 was of their own doing.
Instead of taking a deep breath, the board of trustees panicked, and to blame anyone else is simply wrong. They are solely responsible for their actions that evening.
At a time when Penn State most needed a strong voice, we had none. The university had no crisis-management plan, and the board, as the governing body of Penn State, must accept complete responsibility for this.
On Nov. 9, the only known details of Joe Paternos handling of the information given to him by Mike McQueary were found in a flawed 23-page grand jury presentment. That information alone was insufficient to fire Paterno. Instead, the university should have issued a strongly worded response in defense of Paterno. After all, we had 61 years of empirical evidence to suggest his integrity and character were beyond reproach.
To say Paterno would jeopardize the wellbeing of a child to protect a football program is preposterous. Yet, in spite of his firing, Paterno is the only one to show strength of character by saying, With the benefit of hindsight, I wish Id done more.
Fran Ganter had no difficulty walking to the front door of the Paterno home to deliver the now infamous handwritten note with John Surmas name and a phone number.
Steve Garban or John Surma could have and should have met with Paterno before making a decision. He deserved that much.
Why did the trustees act at 10 p.m.? What was the hurry? Was the risk of inciting the entire campus at that hour really worth it?
For the Penn State community to heal and move forward, an apology from the board of trustees to the Paterno family is essential. As many of the trustees, including Gov. Tom Corbett, have said, they do regret the manner in which these events were handled. Why wait to apologize? The board should demonstrate Paternos strength of character by doing so now.
Waiting does not change their mishandling. It does, however, unnecessarily prolong a healing process that must begin today.
Anthony Lubrano Exton
The writer is one of three candidates recently elected to the Penn State board of trustees.