Opinion: MSU Pres gets F for blame game in resignation

The world started hearing it and couldn't stop listening. Victims of Dr. Larry Nassar had held it in long enough. One by one, they described horrific appointments when a monster violated their bodies and their souls.  

For 20 years, it was permitted to happen in an environment mired with the type of bureaucratic red tape usually only found in the halls of government offices. Women complained and nothing was done.

Repeat cycle. 

Twenty years of an evil legacy and more than 150 victims deserve more than a defensive and disconnected letter from a leader. 

MSU President Lou Anna Simon submits resignation letter

President Lou Anna Simon would have been better off writing, "Members of the Board of Trustees: I humbly offer my letter of resignation.  Respectfully, Lou Anna Simon." 

Instead we got a two page lecture. An explanation that sounded more like a list of excuses.  It seemed like a written account of the way things went down in this whole "Nassar thing," as one of the Board of Trustees incorrectly referenced it just days earlier. He apologized. Two days later we get a defensive and cold letter riddled with reasoning that no one has an appetite for.

Within the first sentence of her letter, she talks about  how difficult the Larry Nassar case has been for others and for HER. By the second paragraph Simon brings the dialogue back to her plans to retire which she says date back to December of 2016:

"Then the Indianapolis Star article appeared about USAG and of the victims contacted MSU to file a complaint..." The explaining continues at a point in the letter where we are thirsty for compassion.

She explains that it was because of the investigation her retirement was postponed. In what should be a letter of early retirement becomes a lesson in public relations. 

Michigan House calls on MSU President Lou Anna Simon to step down

She says as the Nassar case closed, "more and more negative attention was focused on Michigan State University and on me." 

There's that word again.  Me. 

She then references the state lawmakers who passed a resolution asking for her to resign: "As tragedies are politicized, blame is inevitable. As President, it is only natural that I am the focus of the anger."

Perhaps the reason for the ire isn't about your position alone but about what appeared to be more energy spent on protecting your image than there was protecting the hundreds of victims under your esteemed gymnastics program.  

Senators Stabenow, Peters call on MSU president to resign

For journalism students at Michigan State University, grading a resignation letter was never part of the curricula. Perhaps it should have been, as a graded response to your resignation letter could have better described your cold and inappropriate tone: F. 


Roop Raj is a FOX 2 News anchor and reporter. Follow him on Facebook and email your thoughts at roop.raj@foxtv.com

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