Star college soccer player suspended over Sandusky tweets
Boston College suspended a soccer player after she posted a string of tweets about Jerry Sandusky before a game against Pennsylvania State University .
Stephanie McCaffrey shared several tweets Thursday about Sandusky, a convicted child molester and former Penn State assistant football coach. She has since deleted her account, noted USA Today, but the tweets were indexed by social media search engine Topsy.
McCaffrey retweeted several messages from a Sandusky parody account, @MrSandusky_, before posting several of her own tweets related to the imprisoned 68-year-old.
Penn State student Carolyn Lasky spotted a retweet of one of McCaffrey’s tweets, and discovered others she had sent by browsing her timeline. Lasky screengrabbed those tweets and brought them to the attention of Boston College’s athletic director, Brad Bates, and its president, Fr. William Leahy.
“The comments were completely inappropriate and displayed a blatant disregard for the children's lives who were ruined by Jerry Sandusky,” she told the Daily Dot by email. “I felt it was imperative to tell McCaffrey's coaches and the leaders of Boston College about the actions of an individual whom represents their university.”
Lasky, a Labor Studies & Employment Relations major, said her goal was to help McCaffrey “realize just how egregious her comments were and for her to hopefully understand why joking about rape is never okay.” She added, “Child abuse and rape should never be the punchline of a joke, and I truly hope she has acknowledged that.”
McCaffrey sent an apology email to Lasky and her assistant coaches, in which she wrote that she realized “how inappropriate and disgusting my tweets were” and said she regretted her actions. McCaffrey, who is the second-top scorer in the Boston College women’s soccer team this season with nine goals and six assists, added that this would not happen again.
Bates said in a statement that McCaffrey displayed "very poor judgment and exhibited insensitivity." He added that such behavior is not tolerated, and that she was suspended from the team and will not play in Friday’s NCAA game against Penn State.
McCaffrey did not return a request for comment by the time of publication.
The account of Boston College football player Sean Sylvia, who retweeted McCaffrey's posts, was also deleted.
Sandusky was last month sentenced to at least 30 years in prison for 45 counts of abuse. Despite the “shadow” a few men cast over the school, Lasky argued that “Penn State students and faculty continually prove what ‘we are Penn State’ truly means.”
We are continually ranked high due to our outstanding academics. 15,000 Penn State students, participating in THON, raised over $10.6 million dollars for pediatric cancer research last year alone. Unfortunately, Penn State has been portrayed in an inaccurate way over this past year.
I'm not sure McCaffrey's tweets have any real impact on Penn State, as they are clearly comments made by an immature and insensitive individual with a compromised set of morals. These tweets were not the first Sandusky related joke or comment I have heard over this past year, but it doesn't make it okay just because she wasn't the first to make a joke.
Photo via CNN/YouTube