Howard P. Giordano, Naples
Big questions at PSU
The turn of events at Penn State and the tarnishing of the icon Joe Paterno is a tragedy.
But it represents a problem at many of our major universities that has been ongoing and growing for decades. Athletic programs, particularly football and basketball, have slipped into the driver's seat. Administrations have abdicated their role and have turned over control to the power of the athletic coaches.
It is now the tail wagging the dog.
To be sure, athletic programs have enormous influence on enrollment and contribute mightily to the school's bankbook — $60 million a year in the case of Penn State. The question is, do we send out kids to college to become educated or to be the cheering section for a bunch of overdeveloped cretins who scored their shoe size on their Scholastic Achievement Tests?
When university administrators and coaches choose to turn a blind eye to sexually abusive and perverse members of their staff for the sake of protecting the golden egg, I have to wonder.
Did the moral abyss in which this country finds itself begin in America's halls of ivy?