An Open Letter to Penn State Fans
Dear Penn State fans,
I address you not as football fans, but as men and women, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters. I cannot imagine how you feel. I do understand, however, what it’s like to put up one’s defenses up when my team, my university, my family is attacked. I am writing to discourage you from fighting on behalf of those who betrayed you. Do not misunderstand, this cover-up was not to protect you or the school, it was solely to selfishly protect those in power. So am I writing in hopes that you will rise up as one, as you have on so many Saturdays.
For half a century Joe Paterno has defined Penn State. No more. He has forfeited that right. It’s time for you as a fan base to define your school and your state. Let us hear the full-throated disdain of 105,000 fans in Beaver Stadium. Do not wilt and do not decry that this is too harsh a burden to put on a people, because it pales in comparison to the burden the administration has placed on several young men. It is your choice to empower yourself and the victims, to restore the pride of the University and to demand better for all those hurt.
The dye is cast for many as individuals, but not for Penn State University. You are a proud, unbending, loyal people that other fanbases across this country have always respected. That respect can remain intact, but not if you stand idly by as those in power did. If you choose to allow these people to continue to represent you, their legacy, no, their stigma will become yours to bear long after they’re gone. Roar, Lions, Roar with the force of your seven nation army and demand more. Do it for those young men and do it for yourself, we’ll all respect you for it.