Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

An Open Letter to Jerry Sandusky

Dear Mr. Sandusky (and I use the title Mr. not out of respect, but because I'd feel unclean addressing you by your first name),

I wasn't planning to chime in on the whole Penn State scandal, since John Scalzi had already succinctly summed up my views on the matter. But then you professed your innocence in an interview with Bob Costas Monday night and uttered, among other things, this little nugget:

"I could say I have done some of those things. I have horsed around with kids I have showered (with) after workouts. I have hugged them, and I have touched their legs without intent of sexual contact."

Now, I know it's innocent-until-proven-guilty here in America, but I call bullshit.

You showered. Naked. With prepubescent boys. That itself is extremely disturbing, if not grounds for charges of child endangerment. Yet you also hugged them. Naked. And touched their legs. I'm sorry, but no. You can try to explain away your actions as harmless horseplay all you want, but no sane person will ever believe your intentions were anything but sexual.

Let me tell you a story. In high school, I ran track and cross country, and our coach made it mandatory to shower after practice. He'd shower, too. On days when he ran with us, I suppose it made some sense, since his argument was that wearing our sweaty clothes home was unhygienic. But he'd often join us in the shower even if all he'd done was sit around waiting for us to finish our run.

A few guys — those more inclined to run around the locker room whipping towels at each other — showed no outward discomfort with this, but the rest of us did our best to wash up quickly and get out of the showers before he entered. We didn't really talk about it much, but I know most of us came to pretty much the same conclusion: Coach got his rocks off by showering with 14-to-18 year-old boys.

No one ever reported his behavior. Perhaps it was because, if he had such urges, he didn't seem the type to act on them. Unlike you, he never made any advances or touched us in any way. All we had was speculation. Nevertheless, it surprised no one when he was arrested on child endangerment charges for watching porn with 13-year-olds at the nearby Catholic school where he taught phys ed. We were lucky they caught him when they did; unchecked, his behavior may have escalated until he began doing what you now stand accused of doing.

Of course, this one instance doesn't prove all grown men who shower with young kids are pedophiles, but I guess what I'm trying to say is this: GROWN MEN SHOULD NOT SHOWER WITH YOUNG KIDS.

And if, for some asinine reason, you do shower with children, you should certainly NEVER TOUCH THEM IN ANY WAY.

If you're attracted to young boys, so be it. You can't necessarily change who you are. But you always have control over your own actions. You lost control, and you took advantage of children. Who knows how many people you've irreparably scarred along the way.

You may claim innocence, but I don't buy it. You are a weak, weak man.

And you deserve everything you're going to get.

6 comments:

  1. Well said, Nate! Agree one hundred percent.

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  2. I'm so sorry you had a creepy coach, but also glad he was caught before more damage could happen. Not so for other cases.

    And, sorry for all your winter catastrophes, already, in the season.

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  3. Thanks for the great response, everyone.

    Mary, he wasn't creepy in general; it was mostly the showering thing. Other than that, he was actually a pretty good coach.

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