When the Freeh item was first posted here, I had some reasonably eloquent diatribe about Freeh queued up to post, but I ended up deleting it. Then I saw it reported here that it was a hoax and was glad I exercised some measure of discretion. Now that his statement has apparently been verified, here is some version of what I was going to say:
What a self-aggrandizing, sanctimonious piece of bullshit. The ego on this guy to have put out a statement at all, but particularly so quickly after the verdict, is off the charts. Does his statement do anyone any good? Did he include his office phone number and website URL in his statement? What value did he just add with his “I told you so?” And his apparent need to kick a dead guy in the balls is appalling.
Children were harmed by an evil man, and that’s deplorable. Reasonably smart adults weren’t sure what to do with the small picture of what they knew at the time, and that is regrettable. They made decisions that in hindsight look unfortunate and wrong. Two of them have pled guilty to having violated a law that some people think didn’t even apply to them at the relevant time as a means to accept some personal responsibility for their actions and inactions. I find that courageous. Penn State took pretty important and substantial steps to do better and to move forward. It may not have met with everyone’s approval, but it never would.
I don’t think Joe Paterno gave a crap about his or Penn State football’s reputation in weighing what he thought he should do. He said that in hindsight he wishes that he had done more. I find that courageous as well. For not doing more, Joe was collateral damage in this whole affair. When you are a leader of an enterprise that takes a hit, sometimes you take the fall. That might not be fair, but for the institution to survive and move forward, that is often necessary. I feel for him and his family.
The person who is truly the villain in all of this is in jail and will stay there for the rest of his life. I am sorry that his horrendous criminal conduct wasn’t stopped sooner.