It is a positive thing to have an organization exploring the LGBTQ friendliness/competency of our nation’s post-secondary education resources. I think that’s an excellent resource.
But … Penn State? Really? While I can understand that they school ranked based on criteria, I have a difficult time understanding how the atrocities of the Administrative cover up child abuse and rape doesn’t warrant an executive veto.
When I asked about it … well, that’s a story for another post. But its a mini-drama all its own – Lord help us.
Here’s my concern. Joe Paterno protected Rene Portland while she systematically harassed and abused her female basketball team. Renee was on a lesbian witchhunt and Paterno protected her. He didn’t protect the students. He didn’t hold her accountable. He didn’t stand aside and let the Administration address the situation. He protected HER and he did so right up until a lawsuit changed things.
Sound familiar? Yeah, it does and that’s what troubles me. Penn State’s LGBTQ resources could be the most amazing in the world – but it strains credibility to say that the systemic issues that protected a lesbian bashing coach and a pedophilia coach end there. Paterno left the University sphere less than a year ago. There’s simply no way that an investigation of how his reign of tyranny impacted LGBTQ students could have been thoroughly completed.
Look, it is easy to say “OMG Sue, don’t link LGBTQ to pedophilia” but that’s clearly not the point. The point is that Penn State simply hasn’t had enough time to explore and redress the impact of this systemic abuse of power on the LGBTQ community.
To suggest that there’s no connection between Paterno’s abuse of his authority and power in these two situation is just incredulous. To suggest that between Portland’s resignation in 2007 and the disclosure of the Sandusky coverup in 2011 that there were no further abuses of power with regard to homophobia seems … unlikely?
It is not “all better” and to suggest that LGBTQ students are safe on the Penn State campus is concerning. Frankly, I don’t give a damn about Penn State at this point. If the entire University sunk into a hole (and the people were okay), I would applaud. It is a horrible institution and I’m disgusted by people who continually apologize – that didn’t work so well for the Catholic Church, did it?
But I’m more troubled that asking questions is once again considered “impolitic …” That’s the mentality of false transparency that fed the Paterno reign of terror.
And that’s not safe for anyone.
We’ll continue to explore.