Sure, we know that Jerry Sandusky — possibly the most hated man in America since his November arrest on dozens of child molestation charges — is not known for his judgment. Let’s ignore the whole child molestation stuff, for a moment.
Sandusky hired media whore Joe Amendola as his attorney. Bad judgment.
He chose to be interviewed — on a cold call, mind you — by a seasoned interviewer, Bob Costas. One of the worst judgment calls ever.
He speaks to the media…he uses sports metaphors to describe his situation…he wore Penn State gear when he was arrested in December — and it was all caught on camera. All exercises in poor judgment.
Then, when Joe Paterno died in the morning hours of January 22, of metastatic lung cancer, what did Jerry Sandusky do?
He issued a statement.
It’s hard to ignore the fact that Sandusky’s alleged monstrosities against children led to the devastation of Joe Paterno’s beloved program, the Penn State Nittany Lions. That the Sandusky scandal cost Paterno his job. That it cast a dark shadow over Paterno’s legacy and reputation.
But to issue a statement regarding the death of Joe Paterno? I’m not even sure where this dude’s head is at. He is the last person who should speak out. His statement was made through his attorney (of course!), in an e-mail.
“This is a sad day! Our family, Dottie and I would like to convey our deepest sympathy to Sue and her family. Nobody did more for the academic reputation of Penn State than Joe Paterno. He maintained a high standard in a very difficult profession. Joe preached toughness, hard work and clean competition.
Most importantly, he had the courage to practice what he preached. Nobody will be able to take away the memories we all shared of a great man, his family, and all the wonderful people who were a part of his life.”
What a douchebag.
For starters, you don’t use exclamation points in a condolence. Does this statement even need to be dissected? It truly is douchebaggery of the highest order. I can only wonder about the comment regarding Joe Paterno’s “courage to practice what he preached.” After all, that was at the heart of the debate surrounding Paterno’s involvement in the Sandusky scandal. While no one can argue that Paterno set high standards for his program and his players, his failure to live up to that standard when he was most needed leaves us disappointed, bewildered, and saddened.
When Joe Paterno granted an interview in the weeks before his death, giving him the ideal opportunity to blast Sandusky — to lay him out in the media — he did not. He said nothing derogatory about Jerry Sandusky, the man who had destroyed everything and everyone in his path.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think that Joe Paterno was a scapegoat. He had an obligation to do far more than he did. As a man, as a coach, as a leader, as a devout Catholic, as a hero to so many…he had a duty to the right, albeit difficult, thing. He failed everyone with his inaction and his silence.
And while Jerry Sandusky is to blame for his actions, Joe Paterno is to blame for his own inaction.
It sure would have been nice if Sandusky had practiced good judgment (for a change) in this debacle and kept his mouth shut regarding Joe Paterno. No one wants to hear anything he has to say, not today, not now. Not ever, actually.