Top officials at Penn State University have been criticized for turning a blind eye to sex abuse allegations against football coach Jerry Sandusky. An eight-month investigation led by former FBI Director, Louis Freeh, concluded that former Penn State president Graham Spanier, athletic director Tim Curley and vice president Gary Schultz "failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect the children who Sandusky victimized."
In a key discovery, the report also states that as far back as 1998 Penn State's head football coach, Joe Paterno knew about concerns surrounding Sandusky's possible inappropriate interactions with children. Paterno insists he was not aware of any issues at the time. Freeh's report says that Penn State's powerful leaders acted "in order to avoid the consequences of bad publicity."
As a parent, how do you discuss the possible dangers of sexual predators? Do you think this kind of conversation could cause more harm and make children unnecessarily watchful of adults? Should children, as part of their development, be left to develop their own sense of intuition when dealing with adults and other people?
Christine Carter, Ph.D., Director of Greater Good Parents at UC Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center; Author of “Raising Happiness: 10 Simple Steps for more Joyful Kids and Happier Parents, (Ballantine Books, Jan. 2010); best known for her popular website “Half Full: Science for Raising Happy Kids.”