John Engler vetoes Michigan State alumni magazine's criticism of Larry Nassar scandal
Michigan State University interim president John Engler, who has been faced with a lot of criticism in recent months for some of his actions pertaining to the fallout of the Larry Nassar sexual assault scandal, has given his critics yet another reason to criticize and doubt him.
Engler took over as Michigan State's interim president following the resignation of former Michigan State president Lou Anna Simon, who resigned in the wake of the Nassar scandal in late January after serving as the university's president for more than 13 years.
In June, the former Michigan governor came under fire for disparaging remarks he made about Rachael Denhollander, the first person to publicly accuse Nassar of sexual assault, in an e-mail to Carol M. Viventi, the vice president and special counsel to the president, back in mid-April.
Now Engler is facing even more criticism as a result of the fact that he vetoed a Michigan State alumni magazine's criticism of the Nassar scandal.
This magazine, Spartan, almost published a cover story pertaining to the Nassar's sexual assault and its aftermath, but Engler stepped in to stop it by scrapping three different covers that put the scandal in the spotlight.
Engler reportedly did this back in June in an attempt to showcase his positive moves since taking over as Michigan State's interim president. Michigan State spokeswoman Emily Guerrant stated that this issue would still address the scandal.
However, the long-form essays that explore the cultural issues at Michigan State and details pertaining to how the scandal has tainted the school among other related issues from faculty and alumni were removed.
Michigan State's newspaper, The State News, reportedly retrieved the scrapped versions of the issue, and the differences between them and the actual issue are striking. In fact, Engler's interference drastically changed the tone of the issue. The differences in the cover alone are striking.
This past December, Nassar, who was finally arrested in December of 2016 and has been accused of sexually assaulting more than 330 individuals, many of whom female gymnasts, under the guise of medical treatment, was sentenced to 60 years in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Janet Neff on three child pornography charges.
Until recently, the 55-year-old disgraced former USA Gymnastics and Michigan State physician was serving this prison sentence at United States Penitentiary, Tucson, a maximum-security federal prison in Tucson, Arizona that offers a sex offender program for sexual predators.
Nassar was recently moved to the Federal Transfer Center, Oklahoma City in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma as a result of the fact that his lawyers claimed a few weeks ago that he was physically assaulted within hours of his release into the general population of United States Penitentiary, Tucson back in May.
Judge Rosemarie Aquilina sentenced Nassar to between 40 and 175 years in state prison in January on seven sexual assault charges in Ingham County, Michigan, and Judge Janice Cunningham sentenced him to between an additional 40 and 125 years in state prison in February on three more sexual assault charges in Eaton County, Michigan.
Nassar was charged with six counts of second-degree sexual assault of a child in June stemming from the Károlyi Ranch investigation in Texas, but these charges did not result in him being issued any more prison time.
As a result of the Nassar scandal, Michigan State have faced a ton of scrutiny in recent months for their inaction while Nassar was sexually assaulting his patients during his time working at the university.
Many people believe that Michigan State had several chances to stop Nassar over the course of the last several years and they failed to do so, so this scrutiny will likely continue, especially with it being revealed that Engler recently vetoed a school alumni magazine's criticism of the scandal, which only adds to the many reasons that critics already have to criticize him and the school for the way they have responded in the aftermath of this scandal.