Paterno fired from Penn State

This past week, Joe Paterno received a good bye letter in the mail. As a college student myself, I am very proud of Penn State’s decision, but many other students weren’t. There were riots that seemed to have gone on forever hailing their ‘hero.’ Why? Because he’s the all-time winningest coach? This is beyond appalling. He raped many children while he was there, and he wasn’t held accountable (reminds me of the Catholic priest scandal still going on). Why is rape being lifted up as a normal part of life, as though women have less worth than a man of the same age.

Just recently, Facebook finally deleted all the ‘rape-joke’ pages, after numerous bouts of pressure from women about how many teenagers have accounts and what we’re teaching them as a society. Facebook silently deleted the pages, without an announcement to the public. It just goes to show how far we still have to come to overcome rape culture.

Many fans of those ‘rape-joke’ pages said that feminists are destroying the fun of life. What is so fun about rape? What is so fun about having your body violated? When a little boy or man gets raped, people tend to go up in outrage. When a woman or girl gets raped, people get angry, but in a sense it is seen as a normal part of life.

Rape is not a normal part of life. It is the greatest hate crime against women that is being committed right now. And sometimes, people are being enablers without even sincerely knowing it.  It is very common to call someone a ‘B,’ a whore, slut, etc., just to get a point across. These derogatory words need to be stopped and out of America’s vocabulary.

Students at Penn State outright cheered for a man who molested children just because he’s an all time-winning coach (but kudos to those students who were wearing blue shirts who protested the rioting students). In a few years, many of these rioting students will become parents themselves, and will wake up one day to what they were cheering for. But why do we have to wait for these Penn State students to become parents before teaching them about simple justice? We don’t. We can work to end rape culture together, and it will take every man, woman, and child to band together to achieve this.

Disclaimer: This post was written by a Feministing Community user and does not necessarily reflect the views of any Feministing columnist, editor, or executive director.

Join the Conversation