Sports has always been a part of the daily life for millions of fans throughout the world. But, when they turn on ESPN or any other sports network, seeing another sexual abuse scandal, it hits them. These fans have followed sports since they were little kids and would never believe in their right minds something so tragic would ever happen. They just can’t seem to get their behinds off the couch. The words “sexual” affect sports fans in unbelievable ways, ways that shouldn’t even be there to begin with.
Sexual abuse has been growing throughout the past several months in sports. The increasing knowledge of this he country has raised questions and concerns for families and athletes. Many are scared. Scared to enter a field. Scared to enter a locker room. Scared to talk to their coaches. Some are even scared to talk to their own teammates, peers that they grew up with their entire life.
(get quote from someone on a team on the idea of the possibility of being sexually abused)
One of the largest sexual abuse cases in sports throughout the past decade occurred within the past recent months. Former Penn State Assistant Coach, Jerry Sandusky, was charged with sexual abuse towards roughly ten young men, rather boys. These charges scared millions. No one in their right minds would think that a person of high authority in such a prominent school would be capable of doing something so disgraceful. Not only did this make people wary of abuse throughout college athletics throughout the world. But, it enabled hundreds, if not thousands of people to come out to the public and say what is needed to be said.
“Accusations of abuse last week against a major figure in amateur athletics have renewed concerns that the dynamics of youth sports could provide predators easy access to children in an environment where abuse could go undetected,” stated Lauren Keiper of Reuters.com.
In sports, sexual abuse is just like any other case. But the public breakdown of these cases has a tendency to grow, just like it should. Joe Paterno was the Head Coach at Penn State for 46 years, the same school as Sandusky. The school fired him because of “reports” that he didn’t do what he should have in 2002 when Sandusky supposedly had sexual abused a young man. These are just accusations, whether they are true or not is not the same as how they affected the actual people in house. After hearing something so disgruntling, athletes can never be too safe. Not only does it violate student safety, but it violates student trust.
Many sexual abusers are amongst people throughout all types of places. Student athletes are easily accessible whether it seems clear or not. The safety and sanctity of young adults is at an all time risk. No one wants to see people being abused, especially sexually. The slight thought that a person with a great potential ending up being abused makes people shiver. The harsh reality and brutality the world is facing continues to change day in and day out.
Coaches are supposed to be some of the lone soul’s that can be trusted throughout the sports world. Being able to trust a coach is just more than trusting any close friend. It’s being able to trust someone that an athlete sees daily. It is utterly disgraceful that athletes can’t even trust their coaches. Not only is this becoming an unwanted trend, but it’s becoming a scary situation. Athletes are scared. Their worried. No one can blame them, the world is becoming a scary place. The safety of young men and women needs to be protected. Background checks are always happening when people are hired for important roles which is just a matter of trust. Trusting the people who are hired. Trusting the people around the neighboring homes.
No one knows what else can happen in the sports world. Every day there’s a new headline on the cover of The New York Times. Some days there are exciting to read ones, but others are scary to look at. When athletes enter the locker rooms, they must be careful. No one tells them not to joke around, but being aware of their surroundings is always key. The beginning of a traitorous trend is facing the sporting world, hopefully it will die out quickly like the NFL lockout over the summer months. Or it can be long and drawn out like the NBA lockout taking it’s course of several months. Safety is what’s at stake, hopefully that safety can be reassured.