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POLL: Should Joe Paterno Have Been Fired?

Share your thoughts on Penn State's decision to fire the football coach in connection to the way officials handled molestation allegations against a former assistant coach.

Iconic Penn State football coach Joe Paterno was fired late Wednesday following the outcry that resulted from the arrest of former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky on molestation charges, the Huffington Post reported.

University president Graham Spanier was also fired regarding the school’s handling of initial allegations against Sandusky.

Penn State students protested the firing of the beloved Paterno, filling the streets around campus and shouting, “We want Joe! We want Joe!” according to another report in the Huffington Post.

R. Ludlowe November 10, 2011 at 09:05 PM
Children are always more important than football. Joe forgot that.
Nutster November 10, 2011 at 10:25 PM
A couple things about the Paterno firing bother me. 1. Joe did what what was required by law and his employer's rules. Yes, it was the minimum required-- he should have done more. Nobody disputes that. But it doesn't sit will with me. Many of us in the corporate world are made to take training on how to handle different types of potential workplace issues. I would not expect to get fired for doing what the company trained me to do in those situations. 2. Joe Paterno has not been charged with any crime and has expressed remorse, and he gets fired. The two administrators who have been charged with crimes have made no statements and they are allowed to retire / take a paid leave of absence.
Truthandsoul November 11, 2011 at 12:07 AM
Many people are confusing legality and protocol with morality. It is the responsibility of every adult human being to protect the innocent, especially children. Why is there even a question of reporting something reprehensible to your immediate supervisor being enough? It seems that people have lost their moral compass and lack the ability to think rationally. It isn't that hard if you think about the context of these crimes. Tragic.
Pi November 11, 2011 at 12:50 AM
Deserved it completely. He knew what Sandusky was accused of and that he was still around children. He didn't do enough and as someone who is supposed to be a leader, he failed his players.
Joe November 11, 2011 at 05:48 AM
Paterno shouldn't have even been a part of the equation. The assistant who witnessed the abuse should have 1. stopped the abuse from taking place 2. ran to the nearest phone to call the police. Instead, he waits to the next morning to tell the football coach? Then when hearing about the abuse, Paterno passes along the info to a school official and washes his hands of the matter? How hard is it to pick up a phone and call the police when you know children are being raped? I know Paterno is highly revered as a coach, but sorry, all that goes up in smoke when his failure to alert authorities or follow up on the matter may well have resulted in 9 more years of kids being abused.
Erik November 11, 2011 at 11:05 AM
With all do respect...I think some people are stupid. The 28 year old was the one who saw the action and maybe was scared or whatever, but he went to his supervisor, (Joe) and then Joe (who did not see any of it!!!! went to his supervisors. The supervisors were the one's who did an investigation and went to the College Police. They were the one'e who did not believe they had the evidence to do anything. The thing that bothers me, is why everyone is angry at Joe. He did what he was supposed to do, you can say that he should of done more, but that would assume that he knew the charges against the assistant coach were acurate, but he didn't know. All he knew was what he had been told by a 28 year old and he did what he was supposed to do. There is a thing in this country called the right to a trial before you are guilty. I think Joe understood that, and when the other individuals above him let it go, he did as well. Firing him was in my opinion wrong and sad....I hope Penn state as their wallets ready, not only for the child victims, but also Joe. LEGALLY he did what he was supposed to, no one can argue with that. Firing him for doing his duty in reporting what he "Heard" was not grounds for firing him.
TJC November 11, 2011 at 11:36 AM
I'm not sure if your first statement was a pre-cursor for the rest of your comments, or aimed at people that agree with his firing. This was not a "single" case of someone being politically incorrect in a work setting or one of the other thousand situations that we in the corporate world are trained to deal with. This was a case where a monster of a human was doing the worst thing possible to young children. We don't know how much Joe truly knew about this, but he knew enough. He knew enough to take it to his superiors. He knew enough that when Sandusky remained in place--he should have stepped up and done more. I dont think it matters if the witness was 8, 28 or 98. He reported it and could have done more as well. Joe's firing wasnt about a legal standing. It was about ethics and morality. Joe was considered a "father figure" at Penn State--possibly more than any other coach at any other institution. As a leader of people and a father figure, he failed, and has now paid the price. Being fired from a coaching job, IMO, is NOTHING compared to what the innocent victims live and will continue to live with. Lets keep it all in perspective... with all due respect.
TBL of CT November 11, 2011 at 01:55 PM
100% correct.
TBL of CT November 11, 2011 at 02:02 PM
Paterno tried to show his humble self as usual stating he would leave on his own account and retire at the end of the season. However, his arrogance got the best of him. You cannot run a circle around the Board. While he is just a part of this disgusting disgrace, the entire program is forever tainted. Regardless of his contributions, this is what the people will remember about PSU. Though Paterno did not commit criminal misconduct, he even admitted to "wishing he had done more." Hence, a moral obligation and responsibility, not carried out and children forever damaged. Good riddance.
Pi November 11, 2011 at 02:02 PM
Oh yes, he reported it. Then he sat back and silently watched as Sandusky lured kids around campus for the next 10 years. He kept his mouth shut when his superiors swept the incident under the rug. I assure you, if I was Paterno, I would have made it my mission to make sure this incident was properly investigated by people without a vested interest in making it go away. Even if that meant losing my job or losing the respect of the school and the alumni, that's what I would have done.
Bob Melcher, Visiting Angels Senior Care November 11, 2011 at 03:24 PM
This just proves that the people who watched Kitty Genovese get murdered and did not call police had it right. If Joe and Mike had simply kept what they saw to themselves, they would have been OK. Joe took two specific actions to report this and look what happened to him. You cannot punish the innocent and think the world will become a better place.
Pi November 11, 2011 at 03:33 PM
People who sit by and let evil prevail are no better than the perpetrators themselves. I keep reading things like, "JoePa IS Penn State". Have a little pride in your school and do the right thing.
Todd Chandler November 11, 2011 at 04:06 PM
tell that to the kids and the parents... the VICTIMS of these vile and horrible crimes. If Joe and Mike had simply kept this to themselves, they would not have been OK. They would have been as disgusting as the criminal himself, and likely serving time. What you fail to realize is that Joe is not innocent. By allowing this to go on for YEARS and turning the other cheek, he is guilty of enabling this horrible situation.

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