Tuesday, July 24, 2012
PENN STATE SCANDAL AND OUR REACTIONARY CULTURE
The great majority of us have heard about the Penn State - Jerry Sandusky scandal.
We first and foremost extend our sympathies and concern for the victims and their families. No words, punishments or money can repair what has been done.
But what we can do moving forward is to truly take a look at the culture that we have developed over the past few decades. A culture where sports and winning at all costs have simply taken over our common sense. Sports have become an end in itself. Winning is basically a deity.
This many people recognize.
But what continues to go hidden in many hearts is the fact that we are not only a Sports & Win At All Costs Culture but that we are also a Reactionary culture.
That unless a judge, jury, NCAA president or the like call a national press conference and point the finger at us to such a degree that we are forced to open our wallets ... so many of us will do nothing to change.
Unless we are fined or arrested ... all is good, all is calm, all is quiet.
But when the fines and the arrests arrive - then the national or local outrage explodes and then ... only then does something happen to foster change.
Why can't we be more pro-active about the way we build our culture? Why not BUILD instead of just repairing the damage after the fact? Why not go out of our way to teach, to mentor ... and yes spend time, money and energy doing it first instead of spending the time, money and energy to clean up the mess afterwards?
What are we so afraid of?
What the NCAA president speaks about below needs to happen at every University in the United States of America, most likely the world. Not just Penn State!
Mark Emmert, NCAA President's words are below. Two paragraphs that struck me the most are these:
"Our goal is not to be just punitive but to make sure the university establishes an athletic culture and daily mindset in which football will never again be placed ahead of educating, nurturing and protecting young people. More than 100 years ago, the NCAA was created to assure that sports are fully integrated into our colleges and universities, and that the athletic programs wholly embrace the values of higher education. "
"For the next several years now, Penn State can focus on the work of rebuilding its athletic culture not worrying about whether or not it's going to a bowl game. With the sanctions imposed today and with the new leadership, the university, we hope, indeed we intend to ensure that that will be the case. In closing, let me say that this case involves tragic and tragically unnecessary circumstances. One of the grave dangers stemming from our love of sports is that the sports themselves can become too big to fail, indeed, too big to even challenge. The result can be an erosion of academic values that are replaced by the value of hero worship and winning at all costs."
Let's be a part of pro-active change and not just the reactionary culture.
And if money is your core issue - Pro-Active Leaders spend less than Reactionary Janitors. MUCH LESS!
Posted by Lou at 3:39 PM