It is startling that four years after the Sandusky scandal, Penn State’s leadership continues its knee-jerk reaction to the often hysterical, uninformed and sometimes anonymous comments on social media.
Case in point is the university rescinding its invitation to decorated war veteran and West Point grad Bruce Heim to participate in the PSU vs. Army game ceremonial coin toss. Why? Because the fact that Heim once served on The Second Mile board of directors outraged a bunch of tweeters, Facebookers, bloggers, et al.
Heim, like thousands of other civic leaders and Centre County residents who actively supported The Second Mile over the years for its outstanding work with youth, did absolutely nothing wrong related to the despicable deeds of the organization’s founder, Jerry Sandusky. Yet all it took to make PSU knuckle under and rescind its invitation to Heim was some pressure on social media from folks who apparently feel “guilt by association” and “guilty until proven innocent” are admirable concepts.
Penn State hasn’t had a genuine leader since President Graham Spanier, who accomplished so much and was forced out under the same faulty rationales. How can President Eric Barron and the PSU board ask the Penn State community and alumni to “move forward” when they keep repeating their own mistake of the past — trying to avoid controversy at any cost?
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Boca Raton, Fla.