On Leaders, Organizations and Reputation

This article is written in light of the many cases which appeared in the news in the last year or so, regarding corrupt and immoral leaders within organizations in which we (people in the western world especially) put much hope and energy in. Here, I wish to talk about Mr. Jerry Sandusky (former football coach at Penn State University), Mr. Jimmy Savile (television presenter and media personality, in Great Britain) and in general I will mention the countless Catholic sex abuse cases which pedophile priests have been part of, in the recent past. I chose these examples because they are widely known but these are not the only cases in which leaders of respected organizations abuse their power and/or abuse others. I will mention others as well.

The main problem I see with all of these cases is the issue of cover-ups. Organizations such as the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) or the Catholic Church have an incredibly wide audience, world-wide. They receive a great deal of support, in many different ways (not only monetary) and the people who work for them enjoy a high level of respect. Thus, the reputation of the leaders of such organizations is also quite high; they are looked-up to and with time their reputation sky-rockets. In some cases, they are seen as heroes. We only have to think of Mr. Lance Armstrong here and his Livestrong organization, which helps people whom are fighting cancer: http://www.livestrong.org/. I will return to this later though.

In regard to sport organizations, I would like to say that I think it is ridiculous how much attention, time and money we give, in order to watch a few guys (or girls) play a sport, be that basketball, football, hockey or anything else. And precisely because of this point, I think the importance of these organizations grows and with that, the reputation of the leaders of these organizations also grows, exponentially at times.

Mr. Jerry Sandusky may have been the best football strategist ever, I do not know. What I do know is that he abused children and that his abuse of children went on and on and on. And even when reported, the allegations were discredited by the organizations’ authorities; as one victim said at the trial of Mr. Sandusky: “they didn’t believe me”. The victim was not believed because Mr. Sandusky’s reputation was greater than that of the victim. Yet, who gives the reputation to people as Mr. Sandusky? We do - those who indulge in such organizations as if they are the end to all means. Many of us, flock to football games like flies on a piece of ... You know what. I know people who are really upset that there is no hockey season this year – these people are actually upset, no kidding. I usually laugh but when I see how much importance is given to these organizations and the leaders of these organizations then, I begin to understand that this is actually a problem and not exactly a laughing matter.

Mr. Jimmy Savile mesmerized people for decades. The truth about his pedophile tendencies did not come to light until after his death. He’ll probably be reincarnated into a cockroach but that’s beside the point. People loved him off like some sort of saint or something ... to me this is disgusting: the love of celebrities – the putting on a pedestal of individuals. I look up to some personalities too. I can say I learned a lot from Napoleon, or from my ancient King Decebal but not even them, do I hold to such high esteem as some people held Mr. Savile.

At the moment there are resignations at the BBC left, right and center. It is believed that the cover-up there was due to the fact that the BBC had too much to lose; its reputation was too great. Therefore, a sexual predator’s actions were overlooked or even dismissed perhaps. People were abused for decades and the truth about this was hidden for endless years in order to protect the reputation of an organization ... this makes no sense in my mind.

Sexual abuse within the Catholic Church is probably as old as the religion itself. One has only to do a quick “Google search” on “Catholic sex abuse cases” to get hundreds of results. I am honestly not making this up. Anyone can verify what I am saying here, it is no secret.

The same thing plays itself over and over again. The Catholic Church and its administrators would quicker cover-up cases of sexual abuse or corruption (the recent case of the Pope’s butler comes to mind) so as not to undermine the reputation of the Catholic Church as an Institution. This is a clear example of what I call: “stepping on people’s heads to get higher” – as long as the plate of collection fills-up every Sunday, who cares who gets molested or abused? Keep the reputation high at all costs.

What many people do not realize, is that we are the reason why some organizations become great. Mr. Lance Armstrong’s organization Livestrong, has helped countless people. That help was from donations of people like You and I. We make Livestrong strong! Not Mr. Lance Armstrong. Sure, he started it and he was a spokesman for it but our donations made it grow and our support made it flourish, not just Mr. Armstrong. Without the help of the general public Livestrong would not be where it is and it would not have been able to have the impact it did.

University football organizations, religious institutions, non-profit organizations and any other such group is only as important as we make it to be and the same may be said about their leaders. If we glorify football coaches so much then, yes I suppose the well-being of the football team ends-up depending on them but that is not how it must be, or it is necessary to be

Livestrong will live-on, even without Mr. Lance Armstrong. Penn State football will continue without Mr. Sandusky and Catholicism will go on even when this crooked Pope will vanish. I do wish we can learn from our past and that we will stop putting leaders up onto pedestals, as we have been indulging in doing. Organizations are founded on ideas and not on people – we have to hold those good ideas dear to our hearts and not necessarily those who come-up with those ideas. As in: value what I have said here, not me as whoever I am ...

I wish everyone well. Cheers!

Note: My photograph, France, Paris 2010

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Comments 24 comments

Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

When investigating a potential witness to a matter of importance I always look first to see if they are "too Clean". A drug charge and speeding tickets at least let you know the fellow was alive and making some mistakes in the '80's. But a perfect record for anyone is suspect.

But you address much more important matters, great hub.


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

I enjoyed reading this thoughtful piece, Mr. Happy. But I doubt that we, human behavior being what it is, will learn that much from the past. Especially as pertains to our leaders. They exemplify Lord Acton's famous quote: "Power corrupts. And absolute power corrupts absolutely." Appears that may be hardwired into most all of our brains.

Cheers backatcha.


cclitgirl profile image

cclitgirl 4 years ago from Western NC

Interesting hub. I am one of those people who never watches sports, except for the Olympics. Even then, I'll watch snippets of swimming in the summer and skiing in the winter. I can't.stand.football. Maybe playing it with friends outside would be fun, but...I just don't like watching sports. I wonder how so many do and fund it so. These "leaders" have become so corrupt and is it the money that does it? The power? The temptation? I have no idea but you give great food for thought. :)


shivanchirakkal10 profile image

shivanchirakkal10 4 years ago

Good job. congrat Mr.Happy. In politics or any other field, now a days people trying to get position or leadership is become only to make money and other wealth, to enjoy sex and other unsocial activities. As leaders, their followers will support all his illegal activities. So, the number of such activities increasing day by day. No nation is exempted from this.

In think the deaf and dump followers are the main reason for this.

The reacting people can only do some to change this.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

"A drug charge and speeding tickets at least let you know the fellow was alive and making some mistakes in the '80's." - You made a good point here Mr. Eric Dierker but I think there is a difference between a drug charge or a speeding ticket and say, a cocaine addicted drunk, who failed in the oil business, the baseball business and so one, who ultimately becomes President of the United States and goes around the world invading countries. Take a wild guess whom I am speaking of lol ...

You made a great point though: nobody is perfect.

Thank You for the comment. : )

Cheers!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

"Power corrupts. And absolute power corrupts absolutely." - Not everyone is corruptible, Mr. Drbj. Depends what the intent in one's heart is.

Indeed there may have been a malfunction in the hard-wiring - I'm on that. You may certainly join-in to help if You wish - thank You.

I am happy You enjoyed the read.

Thank You for taking the time to read and comment.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

lol We do have some things in common, Cclitgirl - I do not go to sports games myself and it is because the prices are so ridiculously expensive. Actually baseball tickets are not bad (can get a seat up in the clouds for about ten bucks) - I have been to a couple of those. Out of principle though, I will not pay a hundred dollars for a hockey-game or basketball game ... why? So these "celebrity players" and league owners can buy another Lamborghini? No thank You (lol).

Thanks for the conversation. : )

All the best!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Mr. Shivanchirakkal10,

You are quite right in saying that it is the followers of corrupt and immoral leaders who give them the power and opportunity to be immoral and corrupt. That is why I wrote this article - we all have to be aware of whom our leaders are, in politics as well as in our communities, place of work, etc. We can all play a part in making this world a better place for all of us, in my opinion.

Thank You for the visit.

Cheers!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Mr. Happy...This hub is absolutely spot-on. I agree with all you have said, 100%. It is a relief to me, to read the words of someone who feels exactly as I always have on this very topic.

I have never been one to worship or idolize ordinary people, regardless of their title or status.......they ARE just human beings and as such, capable of human faults and frailties. More often than not, they do not deserve the dedication and loyalty of the masses. The public too easily is sucked in by a lot of hoopla and just jump on a band wagon, without specific knowledge.

"Cover-ups".....IMO.....are worse than original crime. Cover-ups keep the public blind, and allow a perpetrator to continue abusing. Such deceit is an egregious blow against everyone involved. The very thing these organizations hope to keep under the rug, is what causes the most disrespect and permanent distrust, when they are ultimately exposed.......and they ARE exposed, in time.

Thank you for this, Mr. Happy. Your hub is a must read, voted up UI and shared!


angel115707 profile image

angel115707 4 years ago from Galveston, TX

Glad this was shared so I could read this, and I agree with you. Why is it that more money is spent rehabilitating and taking care of criminals than victims? Will society ever put the victims first? Not any time soon... and about the Catholic Church... I've read the Bible through and through, it tells you to get Married if have passions that need to be fulfilled in a decent manner.... but the Catholic Church, unlike Jesus or the first apostles ever wanted, made tons of new laws and rules, forfeiting the verses that we are no longer under law but grace, then forcing men to be celibate? Forcing a man to keep to himself when he has natural desires backfires until he is on overload and has unnatural desires...why can't the church see the monsters they have created? Put a cookie in front of a hungry person and lets see how long it takes before the get a bite....oh sick! The Church should know this but they are too prideful to change their stinking laws!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Mrs. Fpherj48 - My apology for my delayed answer, as I have not been around much lately - around Hub-ages that is.

Cover-ups are indeed very troubling though. Especially when they involve the general public - in the end, we all end-up suffering. A good example was the financial meltdown: when a few bankers managed to mess-up the entire world ... now we all have to swallow austerity measures ... wonderful ...

Well, I just try to raise awareness. We all need to work together for anything to really change. I am glad people are at least chatting about such issues. It is encouraging.

Thank You for your comment. And thank You for sharing my article.

Cheers!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

And my apology to You as well, Mrs. Angel115707 for taking so long to respond.

I am happy You enjoyed the read. I like your comment about: The Church should know this but they are too prideful to change".

The Church knows many things but many of its leaders indulge in Fear and when one indulges in Fear, their thinking becomes clouded. The response is often violent and malicious (i.e. the Inquisition, Witch Hunts, etc.)

Thank You for your comment - I appreciate it.

All the best!


junko profile image

junko 3 years ago

Mr. happy, I hope you are well. I stumbled upon your interesting post, the title was the draw. What came to mind was Rome. What is happening now has been happening throughout the western world history. Today news travel instantly worldwide. There are more people in the world today so more sin and less punishment. I think the internet has a dark side and a light side, but it is the best way to shine a light on the problem.


phdast7 profile image

phdast7 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

Good Afternoon White Wolf. An excellent hub and I could not agree with you more. In the West (possibly, mush of the East as well) we have come to idolize sports figures, musicians, actors, and business entrepreneurs, while minimizing the contributions of social service and intellectual people. It is quite unfortunate.

I greatly appreciate all your many efforts to raise awareness ans speak up for the intellectual, the cultural, the spiritual aspects of life and learning. They are far more important and essential that most of what the mass media covers. I think one of your concluding sentences sums the topic up perfectly.

"Organizations are founded on ideas and not on people – we have to hold those good ideas dear to our hearts and not necessarily those who come-up with those ideas."

Great and true statement. Happy Holidays!. Blessings! :)


Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

Wesman Todd Shaw 3 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

Anyone that ascends to leadership or power....once had many leaders or powerful persons they spent a long time admiring.

Humans are social creatures, and we all wind up admiring things in others that we'd like to have for ourselves...charisma, looks, talent, things like that.

So we put folks on pedestals, and the more folks subscribing to the same thing....the more powerful the structure is.

Regardless of any of that, we are all the same thing...flawed humans.

Of course some flaws are far worse than others....and look at celebrity and sports...things typically based on very very little human contribution of value to the community...so little wonder there is where the worst sometimes winds up.


Spirit Whisperer profile image

Spirit Whisperer 3 years ago from Isle of Man

Most people just want to fit in and belong to a group. In schools you can see how the children put certain celebrities up on a pedestal and then they all wear the same hair do, the same clothes and shoes and there will always be a ringleader heading each group. The ring leader becomes a person no one can question, feared and admired even if they are aware character of the ring leader is flawed they will ignore this. As long as people's fear of being excluded from the group is greater than their compassion for their fellow man there will be abusers to take advantage of this very basic human dynamic. The pedophile thrives because he banks on this.


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hello Mr. Junko - happy to see You stop-by. Yes, I am indeed trying to shine some light on certain issues here ... I think I am going to need a spot-light soon though, I seem to be competing with the corporate propaganda machine and the indoctrination of people with the consumerism mentality.

All the best!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Greetings Mrs. Theresa,

Thank You for your support and for taking the time to read and comment. I appreciate it.

Cheers! : )


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Mr. Wesman!! Flawed humans indeed - the thing is, quite a lot of us tend to think their *$%^ don't stink ... well, I'm here to show something different lol

Have a good one!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

"The ring leader becomes a person no one can question" - Not in my world Mr. Spirit Whisperer. The leader is the one who has to answer most of the questions actually ... he/she holds the greatest responsibility.

And ... this is one reason why I do not indulge in Fear: " As long as people's fear of being excluded from the group is greater than their compassion for their fellow man there will be abusers to take advantage of this very basic human dynamic."

Thank You for your comment.

All the best!


Louisa Rogers profile image

Louisa Rogers 3 years ago from Eureka, California and Guanajuato, Mexico

The tendency in people to hero-worship others (sports heroes, TV celebrities, priests, to use your examples) is deeply troubling, though I suspect it has always been thus. Buddhism in America also suffered its sexual scandals-- teachers using their positions of power to manipulate women, and women buying into it. It's hard for me to understand. Maybe when I was 20, I might have been more prone to this kind of hero worship but I'm just too much of a skeptic. I agree, sometimes the denial is worse than the original act (not always though). Thanks for an interesting theme.


Spirit Whisperer profile image

Spirit Whisperer 3 years ago from Isle of Man

"The ring leader becomes a person no one can question" - Not in my world Mr. Spirit Whisperer.

So are there no bankers in the world you inhabit Mr Happy? So why then do all that protesting? LOL!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Greetings Mrs. Rogers,

I was not aware of Buddhism suffering from sex scandals in the United States ... I suppose I should not be surprised, nutty world lol

Thank You for the visit and comment.

Cheers!


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Mr. Spirit Whisperer,

Indeed, I have no attachment to "The ring leader becomes a person no one can question" - I thought about Mr. Savile here ... and how nobody really question the maggot, while he was still alive ...

Now, You asked if there are no bankers in my world - yes, there are. And they are being questioned. So, yes in my world nobody is beyond questioning. The questioning of the bankers only begun lol

All the best!

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