I am disappointed to see that Jay Paterno spoke at THON.
The Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Dance Marathon has spent much of the past year telling public donors that they weren’t defending anyone in the Jerry Sandusky child abuse case.
But now a week after Jay Paterno does a nationwide media tour attacking the Louis Freeh report and telling the nation how Joe Paterno was not responsible for informing authorities about Jerry Sandusky’s child abuse, THON organizers had Jay Paterno speak at their largest charity event.
It was inappropriate for any fundraiser, but especially inappropriate for one that has been seeking to provide distance between its efforts and the failures of past Penn State leaders, including Joe Paterno.
If THON wants to be linked with the Paterno family, they will find a different reception outside of State College. Jay Paterno told THON participants how Penn State is unique because of its pride, praised Joe Paterno and urged THON participants to not back down from the name Penn State. This is precisely what is wrong at Penn State right now. How does pride become a focus at a fundraiser?
Fundraisers are supposed to be about humility and giving, not pride and honor. There needs to be a focus on Penn State responsibility, not the cult of Penn State pride used to rationalize injustice and failure to protect children’s safety.
Class of 1979