2011 November

Nov 09, 2011: Penn State Scandal: Putting Kids First

News outlets and commentators have been quick to remark on the story out of Penn State. Many have yet to address the most critical issue- the children who were abused by Sandusky. While we certainly agree that the recent scandal exposes gaps in accountability and demonstrates institutional failure, the focus now must be on the kids. Survivors of abuse by Sandusky must know that what happened to them was not their fault. They should not have to suffer in secrecy, silence and shame. Joe Paterno and those at Penn State who did not report despite suspicions about Sandusky’s relationships

Nov 09, 2011: UK High Court Finds Catholic Church Liable for Sexual Abuse

The High Court in the United Kingdom ruled yesterday that the Catholic Church can be liable for sexual abuse committed by its priests. This ruling, for which we are very grateful, will give great hope to survivors of sexual abuse by clergy in the United Kingdom. The High Court’s decision allows the case against the Diocese of Portsmouth that we wrote about this summer to move to trial. The case involves a woman known as “Miss E” who says she was sexually abused by Father Wilfred Baldwin at The Firs, a children’s home in Waterlooville.

Nov 09, 2011: Remember the children

This is not about Joe Paterno.

If these boys really were molested, groped and raped by a middle-aged ex-Penn State football coach, then whatever misjudgment Paterno made will be a single lit match compared to the bonfire these boys will walk in for years to come.

Nov 08, 2011: Is Penn State the Catholic Church?

If, as many people believe, the institution that is the Catholic Church should be held legally responsible for the child sexual abuse crimes perpetrated by its priests and the subsequent cover up of the worldwide scandal by their superiors, then shouldn’t Penn State — not to mention football coach Joe Paterno and other top administrators — be held similarly accountable for the alleged crimes committed by longtime assistant coach Jerry Sandusky?

Nov 07, 2011: William Mitchell College of Law Honors Jeffrey R. Anderson ’75

William Mitchell College of Law recently honored Jeffrey R. Anderson ’75 and William M. Orth ’80 at the college’s Annual DeParcq Leadership Dinner. The dinner is held in honor of William H. DeParcq ‘30, prominent Minnesota personal injury lawyer who died in 1988, to recognize those who make a difference in the lives of our students, our law school, and our community.

Nov 07, 2011: Scandal at Penn State Evokes Familiar Patterns

The parallels between the cover-up of an authority figure sexually abusing children at Penn State University and the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church are clear and disturbing.This weekend, Jerry Sandusky, former defensive coordinator of Penn State’s storied and successful football team, was arrested following a grand jury investigation into Sandusky’s sexual abuse of young boys. The grand jury indictment includes over 40 criminal counts involving the sexual abuse of eight boys between 1994 and 2009. According to the grand jury report, the University’s athletic director, Tim Curl…

Nov 07, 2011: A time to talk to children

Experts say it’s important for parents to talk openly, honestly and calmly to kids about cases like the Skip ReVille sexual molestation scandal, tailoring the information to the age and maturity of the child. For young children, it might be best to describe such situations in general terms, explaining that a bad person touched someone inappropriately in a private place. Older kids might prefer to read newspaper accounts or discuss the incidents in far greater detail. The main point is creating a safe place where children feel comfortable sharing information and feelings, knowing they won’t…