SNAP Blasts PA Governor Over Penn State Suit

SNAP blasts PA governor over Penn State suit

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

For immediate release January 2

Pennsylvania politicians who want the entire Penn State fine to be spent in Pennsylvania are being greedy. And anyone who wants to overturn the fine entirely is being short-sighted.

We suspect that Gov. Corbett is posturing to curry favor with Penn State staff and alums. At best, his lawsuit is frivolous. At worst, it threatens to delay or derail millions of dollars that would otherwise be devoted to protecting children.

At one level, Corbett sounds like a parochial member of Congress who just wants to “bring home the bacon” to his constituents. At another level, Corbett sounds like a misguided Penn State booster who can’t recognized that Jerry Sandusky essentially had the help of university staff in keeping his heinous child sex crimes secret.

Penn State officials have already promised that none of the fines will come from tax or tuition dollars. So Corbett’s claim that the fines may "have a devastating, long-lasting and irreparable effect on the state” seem disingenuous.

Besides, what’s the rationale for insisting that all the money be spent in Pennsylvania? At least some of the current and former Penn State staff, students and neighbors who saw, suspected, ignored, minimized or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups there aren’t now and won’t necessarily always live or work in the state.

To put it another way, Penn State attracts and recruits students and staff from everywhere. Penn State students and staff move everywhere. Penn State’s sports teams play everywhere. Kids who participated in Sandusky’s Second Mile likely live everywhere. (And we still don’t know how far reaching Sandusky’ crimes were.)

Finally, kids are vulnerable and victims are hurting everywhere.

There’s just no compelling reason for anyone to insist that Pennsylvania organizations get every nickel of this fine.

Finally, let’s be clear. Any central Pennsylvania businesses that have seen lower profits have been hurt by corrupt or self-serving Penn State officials - who ignored, minimized, concealed and enabled jerry Sandusky’s crimes - not by the NCAA.

"In the wake of this terrible scandal, Penn State was left to heal and clean up this tragedy that was created by the few," Corbett said. He neglects to mention, however, that “this terrible scandal” was, in fact, created by Penn State officials. That tragic fact should never be overlooked, and no one else should be scapegoated for it, least of all the NCAA.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 23 years and have more than 10,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, bblaine@snapnetwork.org), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, peterisely@yahoo.com), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com), Judy Jones, 636-433-2511, SNAPJudy@gmail.com

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Roger January 03, 2013 at 10:54 PM
Help us out here. What authority does NCAA have in imposing fines that come from a state supported school? I do not wish to minimize abuse of children, but how quickly this matter turned into a Sandusky matter. The focus here on a matter between the state and NCAA. The infractions that caused the NCAA could have been anything. Leave the Sandusky mess out of the discussion, and focus on the relationship between PA and NCAA. This is only the issue in the lawsuit.
John Linko January 04, 2013 at 01:49 PM
Roger - The way I understand it, the school agreed to the fine when the NCAA threatened them with the suspension of the entire football program, the so-called "death penalty". As the NCAA governs the ability of its member schools to compete in athletic leagues that it administers, that is the sway it holds over all schools that wish to compete. What I find more troubling about the lawsuit is exactly the reasons you seem to be focusing on. Why is the state suing over a loss of revenue being suffered by smaller businesses due to a change in business conditions - regardless of the reason for the change in those conditions? Can other sectors of the economy expect that the state will do the same every time a plant closes, a development deal falls through, or when an energy company leaves town after all the gas has been pulled from the earth? This smacks of an attempt at a sort of disaster relief for man-made impacts instead of natural ones - in this case, Hurricane Sandusky instead of Sandy. Add in the lame-duck Attorney General not participating in the suit, and the incoming AG being left in the dark, and you have what looks like a short-sighted attempt at political grandstanding that stands a good chance at making a great deal of symbolic impact, but perhaps not much else. Kind of like the relationship between big-time college sports and the average person getting a college education, don't you think?
hepen January 04, 2013 at 03:20 PM
I am not a follower of college football so maybe I just don't understand the situation. If Penn State is allowed to play in the regular season cames how are the local State College business being damaged, they games are being played. The post season is not being played but how many games out of the post season are played in State College? How big an impact would the post season games have on local hotels and restaurants?
same old story January 04, 2013 at 05:43 PM
Tim January 04, 2013 at 05:59 PM
The honorable guvner got the blessing of the current Attorney General to take this action. This blog offers some insight into the lawsuit and its merits. Go to: http://sports-law.blogspot.com/2013/01/penn-state-rescue-blues-initial-read-on.html?goback=%2Egde_2301658_member_200860732 Just remember...it's your tax dollars he's spending while he keeps telling us the budget is too tight to fund education and other essential programs.
Ed M January 04, 2013 at 07:15 PM
What normally happens with NCAA fine monies?
Roger January 04, 2013 at 10:16 PM
Ed, that is a good question, ... the disposition of the fine monies. If I recall correctly, when the $60M was handed down, NCAA was asked the question: What will be done with the money? At that time, they had no answer to the question. It was later they came forward with a answer: Help abused children. That was a vague enough answer to satisfy the media. We know the history of fine monies is not very good. Consider the tobacco settlement money that came to PA. The money was intended for cessation of smoking. But, it found its way into all kinds of pet projects, unrelated to smoking. Once the funds reached the state coffers, it was up for grabs. It would be no surprise to me to learn the same happens with fine monies coming to the NCAA. How many of really think the $60M will be put forward to stop child abuse? Count me on the skeptical side. What happened to SNAP? They apparently did a Patch-blast, then just walked away. Their position has no bearing on a college/NCAA relationship. They must have written this article, blasted it out because of the second-removed Sandusky story, and then walked away.
JS January 04, 2013 at 10:29 PM
The university agreed to play within the NCAA rules and reep the rewards of the NCAA organization - TV revenues for regular season and bowl games and whatever else is involved in the whole situation. For the governor to now come out and say the state wants to be involved in the sanctions of the football program is ridiculous. Penn State has collected all the proceeds of being a part of the NCAA (whether you agree with their policies or not) for many years. It's now time for them to pay the price for their allowance of a terrible crime within their organization. For the governor to get involved now, when he delayed prosecution for years while he was Attorney General, is just laughable.
Angry Bear January 04, 2013 at 10:32 PM
This has nothing to do with Penn State or trying to do the right thing and everything to do with "Corbett the Corrupt" trying to cover his "ASSets'.
MSgt. John DeLallo January 05, 2013 at 03:38 PM
Has anyone considered that Penn State agreed to NCAA's sanctions under duress? Do this, or we're pulling the plug on your football program. I believe that the NCAA, originally started under Teddy Roosevelt to resolve safety issues (mainly head injuries), has grown far too large, and lags well behind the realities of today. A kid loses a scholarship for selling a game jersey? Gimme a break. Sandusky's actions are intolerable, and he will likely die in prison. I'm still trying to play connect the dots with the SNAP reaction. Was Sandusky a pedophile priest? Mayhaps Holy Mother the Church is pissed off that Penn State may escape a draconian fine and other penalties, while the Archdiocese of Boston cannot. Sour grapes?
cc January 09, 2013 at 09:53 PM
They should of just suspended Penn State from playing football for a few years. The administration and coaches allowed Sandusky to molest children over the years. Wish Paterno would of lived to see his records taken away from him.
NE12Ukid January 09, 2013 at 10:11 PM
Angry Bear 5:32 pm on Friday, January 4, 2013 This has nothing to do with Penn State or trying to do the right thing and everything to do with "Corbett the Corrupt" trying to cover his "ASSets'. IMO you are so right, Corbett is just deflecting attention from his own part in this scandal.


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