I’ve listened to individuals around me state that this ‘hazing’ has got to stop. Hazing wasn’t the reason for the turn of events in the death of Timothy Piazza. It was the catalyst, however, what actually caused the death was these eight young men who thought they could ‘beat’ the system and cover up their obnoxious and callous behavior by attempting to ignore the fact that a fellow ‘human’ was dying. They didn’t want to get the ER or the Police involved because they would get in trouble….yes, they would have….but not nearly as much trouble as they are certainly in now.
Two (2) of these individuals are from Chester County, Pennsylvania....where I grew up....one from Malvern, PA and one from Downingtown, PA. I think a good deal of the parents who lost a son and my heart goes out to them but I also spend time thinking of the parents who raised these immature, insensitive individuals who sat/stood by in their own drunkenness (but not drunk enough to shy away from sending texts to each other during the cover up) and watched this fellow ‘human’ die. Do these parents feel that they have any contribution to the lack of responsibility that their child displayed or are they going to take that ‘low’ road and blame it on the ‘system’ and lament that their child’s future is ‘over’ because of one (1) mistake? Or are they going to bring a law suit against Penn State University because Penn State permitted the ‘residency’ culture that ‘spawned’ this behavior? Or will they own up to the fact that they could have done a better 'job' at the only 'job' worth having in life?
The culture of Centre County, Pennsylvania, State College, Pennsylvania and Penn State University are all intertwined in one big, ugly, entitled web. I feel bad for the members of academia at Penn State that cannot abide the ‘football’ mentality but believe that someday in some way, things will change. I don’t even know if it is the ‘average’ member of the community; I believe not, but I know enough members of the State College community that have nothing to do with the University other than work or have a business in the town who are pathetically driven by the successes of the Penn State sport teams and the culture of the Greek life.
The Sandusky scandal ‘tore’ the community into splinter groups….everyone had an opinion and half of the people defend Joe Paterno to this day. Many individuals still believe that he was right and nothing he did was justification for his treatment. From the President of a local business association who felt entitled to ‘whore’ to get marketers to support his organization to the average citizen who still places photos of Joe Paterno and the Penn State lion on his facebook page, there is a sense of entitlement that transgresses gender, age and genre which is so strong it is perverse….and I know for a fact it continues to this day.