Reading Eagle Joins Putz Patrol

I don’t think John Fidler of the Reading Eagle quite gets it. He’s lining up with the legions of “journalists” who are excoriating Sue Paterno for seeking the truth. He begins his article with:

I’m not sure what Sue Paterno and her family had in mind when they began their recent media blitz armed with a report by a former attorney general and governor of Pennsylvania. Resurrect infamy? Force us to recall shameful behavior by a storied college football coach? Remind us all of the culture at Penn State that, according to last year’s report commissioned by Penn State, put football before everything else, including the safety of children?

If that was their goal, then mission accomplished.

There are people who decry any mention of the Holocaust using the same type of reasoning. It is shameful behavior to be buried in the annals of history, a human anomaly that is best forgotten.

“I wonder how someone could be as tone-deaf to the absolute need to protect children as Joe Paterno and his cadre of protectors of the Penn State brand.” —John Fidler,


We need to remember these things lest they happen again. We need to face bitter truths and learn new lessons. We need to acknowledge that this is an imperfect and often cruel world.

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

Most of all, we cannot permit injustice to prevail simply because it is unpleasant to reopen old wounds. Sue Paterno and family knew they would be scorned for doing just that, but they damned the torpedoes. To this turkey, it is refreshing that there are people in this world who will stand on principle and seek justice. Whenever I see it happening, I applaud it. Writers can say what they will, but they’ll stick their scrawny necks out only so far; most will not take an unpopular stand. On the other hand, the Paterno family has put their money where their mouths are.

Sure, guys like Fidler can argue that the Paternos are employing their financial reserves to drag us all through the mud and by reopening those wounds, they further sully the image of the University we love. They can play the “vvvvviccccccccctims” card with perceived impunity. They have the flawed Freeh report in their holster and they feel compelled to draw and shoot in defense of its conclusions.

These are the same guys who participated in the original media storm that fomented the great rush to judgment of the late Joe Paterno. Now, the cowards among them feel compelled to defend their original positions. They can’t be inconvenienced by something like the Paterno report or, perhaps, by the truth.

Unlike Fidler, a few brave reporters have started to rethink their stands on the Penn State issue, risking popular disapproval. They deserve to be recognized for their departure from the horde.

I agree that prolonging the Sandusky scandal is unpleasant. So is surgery. Sometimes you just have to reopen woulds to ensure that they heal.


  1. Joe says

    Unfortunately this is my local newspaper. Fidler is not the regular beat writer covering PS-Rich Scarcella handles that assignment and provides pretty fair coverage. In fact he may be the “dean” of PS reporters-Paterno used to always let him ask the first question during his pressers and was always given a personal one on one interview by Joe before the start of each season.

    Fidler is just another long list of “opinion” journalists (I use that term very loosely), which quite frankly I wish they would keep their opinions to themselves. I don’t mind dissenting opinions, but when you just throw something out there because you think people give a shit about what you have to say without the clarity of personal analysis, well I’d rather read the coupon page.

    This clown was not worthy of a full post on this site and gives credence to the statement that opinions are like assholes, everyone’s got one!

    Perhaps you should list all of the candidates for “Putz of the Year” and we (all four of your readers and yourself) could select a winner.

  2. says

    Ya think? Well, lemme tell you, it’s because Scarcella usually puts out good stuff that I thought this was a remarkable enough departure for the Eagle that it was worthy of column space here. I tend to appreciate Scarcella as much as I do Frank Bodani of the YDR.

    I said I would bequeath the Turkey to you in my will, but that didn’t include the editorial rejection privileges inter vivos. I’ll decide what’s worthy.


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