College Athletics and Sexual Misconduct

You guys have already seen the details surrounding the Michigan State scandal. It’s all over the internet, the news, everywhere. So I’m not going to sit here and rehash stories and information in an effort to avoid journalistic redundancy. But the bigger issue is this; it’s not just MSU. It seems to be happening on campuses across the country. We’ve all read the front page incidents. Penn State, Baylor, and now Sparty. This is a problem that starts long before classes begin. This is a problem with our culture.

Here’s the good news; it looks like the culture is starting to change. God bless those women who spoke up. They made a change. Not just in regards to the Olympics or MSU, but they made a change in their lives. I’m not going to sit here and pretend to know what they went through. But I feel for them. They are truly victims in every sense of the word.

This is an issue that is resonating throughout the film and entertainment industry as well. Women are fed up, decent people are fed up. This isn’t 16th century England, it’s 2018. We need to collectively act like it. For every story that comes out, there is someone who went through a horrible situation. Yes, sometimes we roll our eyes at the next story that breaks. It has a ‘been there done that’ feel to it. But we can’t allow ourselves to become numb to it. We need to fix it. It starts at home.

When I read these stories, I’m thankful I don’t have a daughter. No one should have to go through this. No parent should ever get this kind of news. I have 2 boys. Was I perfect in every aspect while raising them? No. Did they turn out perfect? No. But I can say this with my head held high; they respect people. They respect the women they have dated, they respect law enforcement, they respect their peers. To this day, even when I do them the smallest favor, they say thank you. To me, their dad. My first thought is always ‘I’m your dad, you don’t have to thank me’. But that’s who they are. They’re respectful. Again, we’re not perfect, but I’m a proud parent because of them.

The change in culture needs to start at home. Raise your sons to treat others with respect. Teach them to be real men. And raise your daughters to be strong and independent. The women that have come forward, not just against Larry Nassar, exhibit the strength that we all need. You want a hero today? Turn your eyes away from the game for a minute and look around you. I bet you’ll find one right beside you. I was fortunate to grow up in the same household with mine. My dad was everything that I’ve strived to be. I can only hope I’ve set the same example. We should all want that.

Change starts with us, each and every one of us. We can talk about it all we want, but we have to act on it in order to make any positive changes. My hope is that we can sit down to watch a game without the collateral drama that has seemed to infect the games we love. It starts with us, it starts with me, it starts with you.

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