Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cruel and Unusual Punishment

Monday morning, the National Collegiate Athletic Association threw out its own rule book to join the mob of those demanding punishment for Penn State University.
This was an act of bureaucratic lawlessness and was justified by NCAA President Mark Emmert as he assumed his new job as NCAA judge, jury and executioner.
Wallowing in guilt and shame, PSU meekly accepted its punishment, which was spectacular in its potential legal pitfalls. The university handed Emmert the rope with which to lynch its legendary football program and the NCAA president took a zealot’s delight at the opportunity.
One man's opinion: Mine! Read it all here.

The NCAA has a constitution. If it had a Supreme Court this decision would have been thrown out 9-0.

UPDATE: From the comments:
"
Does something have to be written in a rulebook for us to know the difference between right and wrong?"
We have rulebooks, due process and laws for a reason and it's not always to punish the guilty. As made clear by Sir Thomas More in A Man for All Seasons.
William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law! 
Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?
William Roper: Yes, I'd cut down every law in England to do that!
Sir Thomas More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man's laws, not God's! And if you cut them down, and you're just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake! 
Chew on that for a while. The More of Robert Bolt's play was truly a man for all seasons. Including, football season.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you Gil. The reference to A Man For All Seasons was a good one. However, I disagree with you about almost everything else.

July 25, 2012 at 1:20 PM 
Blogger CharlieSix said...

Thanks for a very thoughtful and well written article on the NCAA/Penn State disaster. Your thoughtful articulation of how the NCAA over-stepped its bounds makes it clear that there was a rush to judgment by that august body. And you make it very understandable that the president of Penn State made a huge mistake in accepting the sanctions without having had the benefit of the NCAA's due process. He can claim that there was a threat of more stringent sanctions, such as the so-called Death Sentence, but that does not justify his rolling over. Nor does he reasonably explain why it was his decision without submitting the matter to the Board of Trustees as a whole. If the NCAA wants to hold the Board of Trustees responsible, why should not President Rodney Erickson involve them in the sanctions? THe NCAA & Erickson are a bad team.

July 25, 2012 at 8:07 PM 
Blogger jake said...

Now it's being reported that the Freeh Report is being updated to correct several errors.

The year has been corrected from 1998 to 2001 as the year AD Curley met with Sandusky. That's a pretty significant error.

An email has been corrected to eliminate VP Schultz's denial of awareness about Sandusky's activities. Again, a huge difference in alleged criminality.

Supposedly, seven errors in total are being corrected, though only these two have been reported.

It is incomprehensible that this superficial, now confirmed-to-be- flawed report has been accepted by the Trustees,the NCAA, and the general public as the defining document on a great man and a wonderful university.

July 26, 2012 at 12:09 PM 

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