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LETTERS: Lest we not forget: Lessons from Penn State

To the editor:

We have learned that Jerry Sandusky was able to maneuver within the open community of Penn State, and his charity, to further his pedophilia offenses against children. The leadership of the college, the renowned head coach nor any community member never once confronted him when they knew of victim allegations or witness reports of the pedophilia abuse of young boys.

Power, prestige and money all are a part of it. With that, Sandusky repeated his offenses at will and ruined numerous lives.

In Rome, N.Y., I grew up two blocks away from a successfully run supermarket. The problem with the store’s owner is that every five years or so he would pick up young men hitchhiking and sexually abuse them. He would normally be arrested, it would hardly make the news, he would get out on bail, and settle the issue out of court.

Despite the rape and sexual abuse of young men, people still shopped his store.

As a teenager, I was bewildered about why people kept shopping his store knowing what he did to those young boys. People let it pass, I suppose, because it didn’t affect them directly, and yes, he ran a good supermarket.

He never served time and over the years, his prestige and his business declined.

About eight years ago, the store owner, in his 70s, abused another young man. He did not have the prominence or power to clear his name, so the next day he hung himself in his garage while on bail.

As a community, we face these hard issues locally, and appropriately address those issues with our judicial system.

I applaud the courageous girls that stepped forward, the strong District Attorney and Judge Brian D. Burns because he had the principle to speak the truth in sentencing.

As part of the community, I will not let memory pass on this matter. I will have my voice and withhold my wallet, as well as my family.

It affected many young women over a period of time in a very ugly and offensive manner, and I will remember that.

Steven Adolfi

Cazenovia

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