Thursday, November 17, 2011

Penn State and the Crisis of Masculinity

Here's an interesting look at the Penn State scandal that seems to be dominating the news cycle of late. I was shocked when the news first broke and I saw slews of university students rioting over their outrage that Joe Paterno was stepping down from his position as head coach of Penn State's highly regarded football program rather rioting on behalf of the fact that nothing was done in support of the victims when such abuses were brought to light. This evidences an incredibly skewed since of priorities held by the students as well as the administration at Penn State.

The fact that such heinous crimes, which are perhaps the most deeply disturbing atrocities one human being can inflict upon another, were perpetrated defenseless children is sickening. However, the inclination of those who comprise the administration to protect the reputation of the institution rather than tend to the well-being of the children is even more nauseating. When reading about this, I find a lot of parallels between Penn State's reaction to the crimes committed within their institution and the reaction of the Catholic church when similar allegations were brought to light against it. It seems that priority number one is: Protect the reputation and credibility of the institution at all costs.


Anyways, the article I attached takes a look similar approach to the issue to that of our class. Writer Niobe Way examines the role that masculinity played in reaction to the scandal. I think she may be on to something here and the point she makes should lead us to a long needed conversation on the role of masculinity within our culture. Very interesting.

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