Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Valley

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
-Edmund Burke

At first I said, NO, I’m not writing about the Penn State mess. It’s been beaten to death all week and I’m sick of it. But, I cannot ignore it.

The victims, the real victims, those boys who were molested; must be wondering why did it take so long? How could some adults know, and so many adults suspect, that something evil was happening to these children; yet do nothing about it? How can that be? I think it was because those adults decided that doing something would hurt more than doing nothing. It’s that simple. And the more one has to lose by doing something, the more it hurts and the less likely one is inclined to do anything.

Happy Valley, aka State College, aka the home of The Penn State University Nittany Lions, virtually the only big-time college football program that was still CLEAN; had a lot to lose. The Clean Football Program in The Happy Valley. Who wants to screw that up if they can avoid it? So they avoid it. But doing nothing always makes it worse in the long run. Ask the Catholic Church how well doing nothing has worked out for them?

If there is any lesson to be learned from this latest horror story, it’s that we cannot pass the buck when it comes to making a tough decision IF it’s the right decision. If you don’t make the tough decision today, you will always face a tougher decision tomorrow. Perhaps Happy Valley would not have been quite so happy for awhile had someone made the tough decision years ago. But recovery would have been quick and complete. Now the recovery will be long and painful and, perhaps never totally complete.

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