Much has already been written about the wrongs committed by Penn State University officials that enabled a child molester to roam freely within its locker room showers and other football facilities.
Much more will be written about how Joe Paterno destroyed his 61-year legacy as a hall of fame football coach by conspiring with others to protect the reputation of his athletic program rather than the young boys that Jerry Sandusky would abuse over a 10-year period.
This is not an uncommon moral dilemma encountered by those responsible for public or private organizations. Leaders often struggle over balancing the interests of an organization against exposing inappropriate individual conduct.
That shouldn’t have been difficult in the Sandusky case because his actions were criminal and forever altered the lives of an unknown number of innocent children.
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The Penn State tragedy reminds us that the interests of an institution should never rise above those of a human life. Whether you have knowledge of a defective car part, life-threatening side effects of a drug or a sex predator running amok in your midst, everyone at every level must speak up to protect those in danger.
The accolades and financial benefits of a winning season or selling more product must never be allowed to comprise the better nature of those in control.
To do otherwise, is to fail as a human being.