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Archive for January 18, 2019

Jan. 18, 2019 — Another shoe drops in East Lansing

Use whatever metaphor or simile you want to describe the fallout over the Larry Nassar investigations at USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University.

They apply.

And with the latest resignation, that of interim MSU president John Engler, over some outrageous statements over the victim status of more than 300 young women athletes, enough shoes have dropped to make an Imelda Marcos starter kit.

Engler, the former three-term governor of Michigan, is the latest of nearly 20 departures, resignations, or indictments which have been linked to the arrest and conviction of Nassar, the former team doctor for Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics who has been sentenced to hundreds of years in prison for sexual assault and child molestation.

Engler did the unthinkable this week when he made remarks marginalizing the victims, implying that they were enjoying their time in the spotlight.

The words were spoken with a tone-deafness that has seemed to have enveloped the political landscape over the last few years.

Anyone who watched the ESPY Awards and the video of the Nassar hearings could have easily discerned that the women in court and on that stage would have rather been doing anything else. Only their determination put them in the public eye, even decades after being abused. Indeed, even though there were some 140 Nassar survivors attending the ESPYs and accepting the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage, there were nearly 200 more victims who were not on stage.

And there are probably dozens more who have never come forward to the authorities because they are either too traumatized or who don’t want to create extra fuss. That’s what’s mind-boggling about some of these crimes.

Though the universe of discourse of victims at trial may have been a small handful, the known impact is hundreds.

And I have a feeling a lot more suits aren’t going to have their jobs a year from now.