The University of Syracuse fired long time assistant men's basketball coach Bernie Fine after another allegation of child sex abuse is made, and a tape of Fine's wife saying she's worried that her husband is sexually abusing boys in her home, is made public.
Bernie Fine is the founding president of the Jewish coaches association.
The University of Syracuse conducted a four-month investigation of Fine six years ago and cleared him of sexually abusing the first of what is now three alleged victims who have come forward to accuse Fine of abusing them.
That alleged victim recorded the telephone conversation with Fine's wife in 2002. The university claims it did not know about the recording when it cleared Fine of abuse six years ago.
The university has retained an outside law firm to review its internal investigation process, the university's investigation that found Fine innocent, and its handling of sex abuse allegations.
What we really have here, I think, is another example of why child sex abuse allegations must be brought to law enforcement immediately, and law enforcement must be allowed to do forensic child sex abuse investigations without interference from university officials, priests or rabbis.
University presidents, Catholic priests and haredi rabbis are not qualified to assess these allegations and their conflicts of interest combined with their lack of knowledge more often than not allows pedophiles to walk free and endangers children.
Also noteworthy is that the university's move to Fire Fine came in response to ESPN's reporting. Over the weekend, ESPN broke the story of the third alleged victim and broke the story about the tape of Fine's wife.
It is the publicity and its impact and potential impact on fundraising and reputation that has done the most to protect children.
Haredim need to learn this lesson, and they need to understand that the steps taken by their rabbis (including manipulating the Patty Hearst of haredi child sex abuse survivors, Pinny Taub) to shut down public reports of child sex abuse, no matter what halakha they cite or what rationale they give, will result in more sexually abused haredi children.
Publicity – sunlight – is the best and the only real hope sexually abused children have.