6.15.2012

Sandusky Trial - Feedback Friday



Maybe it's because I'm from Pennsylvania, but every conversation around here seems to turn to the Sandusky trial at one point or another.

 My local paper covers the latest testimony on the front page each morning and we all read with horror the similar stories from one young man after another. Though this information is horrible, the most heated debate seems to revolve around the role and responsibilities of assistant coach Mike McQueary, a 26 year old graduate student at the time.

In his testimony, McQueary saw the assault of a boy in the shower. He testified he saw the actual "sexual act" (without being too graphic, but you can read it yourself HERE) with his own eyes.  He made a loud noise with a locker door to break it up, looked into the eyes of the 10-12 year old boy, then left to call his dad from his office. (source)

He reported what he had seen to the head coach, Joe Paterno who reported to the Penn State athletic director, who reported to the the vice president of the university. (source)

It's Feedback Friday and here is where the debate seems to center...

My friends seem to be divided, and passionately so, about McQueary's responsibilities on that night.

Should McQueary have physically removed the child from Sandusky that night?  

Is his physical inaction excusable because he was a student and subordinate?

If you could put yourself in his shoes at the age of 26, what would you imagine your response to be - similar or different from McQueary's?



18 comments :

  1. I'm not sure how I would have acted at that age. There's not a lot of life experience yet, and it would be natural to depend upon a parent's advice before I acted especially due to the unbelievably horrid thing he saw. The status of Sandusky would have made the action even more confusing too.

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  2. I have no idea how I would have reacted and I hope I never have to find out. I do think Mr. McQueary did the best he was able to do at the time. First I cannot imagine the shock McQueary must have felt and secondly, I feel a lot of people discount how powerful the people in this circle were. What if Mr. McQueary had removed the child and Sandusky turned around and blamed him (McQueary)for assaulting the boy? I'm thankful McQueary made the effort he did. I have a feeling there are people who knew this was going on that didn't do anything.

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  3. I can't imagine seeing that and just walking away. As a mom of a son and a daughter, I think I would have just instinctively reacted and done my best to get the child away. I can't imagine just leaving and calling my parents for advice. I would have at least called the police. I understand he was young and these people were his bosses, but to leave a child while he was being assaulted is unimaginable to me.

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    1. I kind of feel the same way. I was married and had my first child by the time I was 26 years old - is it really that young? I wonder if things would have been different if it was a little girl?

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  4. My first reaction was to throw the book at him for not being man enough to take immediate action and remove the child, punch Sandusky... whatever he had to do to protect that innocent child. Then, I read a comment above that brought to mind the potential for Sandusky to turn around and paint McQueaey as the abuser... and who know if the young victim would be brave enough to speak up against Sandusky or if he would be too fearful of the consequences. It's all around a terrible situation. If nothing else, McQueary should have gone straight to the authorities and skipped the school administrators completely. At the end if the day, though, McQueary is not the one to Blane--Sandusky is the monster.

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    1. I, too, never would have thought about the tables turning and McQueary being painted as the bad guy until I read that comment.

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  5. Yes he should have. No it wasn't. And I would have said something, taken the boy away, and immediately called the police.

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    1. I wonder, was it the shock of seeing such a taboo act in person? I would love to know if he wishes he had done something different now that he has children.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  6. I am sure that McQueary ask himself this same question everyday. And I am sure this will hunt him the rest of his life. At least he tried to do something! What I would like to know is how did Sandusky wife let this happen? She had to know what was happening. And if I am remembering right, there was a victim that said it happen in the basement of their home and she was upstairs and the victim was screaming. She is a mother, what kind of mother lets that happen? May God be her judge and jury!

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    1. The testimony I read said she was right outside the door at one point asking "What is going on in there??" I don't know how she can stand by him now.

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  7. I am in that age range right now. I don't have children yet, but hope to someday... I feel like I would have at least said something to him right then. I hope I would've been able to see that the child got away then left myself. I'm not big on conflict at all, but for the sake of a child!? This whole thing is just heartbreaking and awful.

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  8. 26.... are you kidding! He knows right from wrong and he should have helped that child! Sometimes you have to not think about yourself and do the right thing. And at 26 he should have stopped it! And his wife.... don't get me started......she can't be that naive...

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  9. At 26, you should know the difference between right and wrong. Even if he didn't have the guts to physically remove the child, he was completely capable of calling the police instead of his father right then and there. The fact that he didn't speaks volumes about the deeply indoctrinated "the coach is God" phenomenon that exists in sports.

    I'm not sure how he lives with his inaction.

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  10. I am sure McQueary wishes has an inner battle and guilt he has to deal with on a daily basis. I grew up having to protect, so I personally would have stepped in and and done whatever it took to get that boy to safety. What a sick son of a gun he is!

    I cannot stand to see children hurt or mistreated, period. They often are torn by their emotions, scared and confused and don't quite know who they can tell an trust to believe them. It makes me sick to know that an adult could take advantage of and/or hurt a child, period!! As for Sandusky's wife, I cannot fathom her not knowing something was going on and not doing something to help those innocent children.

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  11. His reaction is why we have to talk about abuse, rape and other uncomfortable topics. It's easy to say how we would react if we were in that situation but I have known so many people who were abused while family members, turned a blind eye. I don't think any of them meant to condone the abuse but... they were afraid, they didn't want to hurt the abuser, they didn't know what to do, they just couldn't believe this was happening. We have to prepare ourselves for the unthinkable and "practice" what we would do. What if it was your husband?
    Sandusky didn't do enough but he did more than many others have in his situation unfortunately. This battle is not over.

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  12. I live thousands of miles away (in Greece) but I was very shocked reading your post! I am the mother of three boy, which on a daily base attend several sports or other activities. You can never be sure to whom you trust your chlidren... It's so sick...

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  13. While, I don't condone vigilante justice, I think this is a more appropriate reaction to seeing a child being raped, then making a loud noise and going to call your father:

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/father-daughter-attacker-beat-death-texas-151942957.html

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