Thursday, April 25, 2013
Finally, thankfully, we now have a group of well-connected citizens who represent an institution of higher learning that actually learned something.
If the news is true, Lackawanna College trustees will rename its’ beautiful and expensive Mellow Theater, dropping the name Mellow and restoring some sense of honor to the hopefully hallowed halls of education.
I’m pleased to say that I take some credit for applying pressure to the former friends of Bob Mellow who control the school, mostly powerful, political men who call the shots at the college that is known more for its menacing football team and players’ off-field shenanigans than for its’ academic excellence.
The school is lacking in leadership as well.
The top position as president has been filled with Mellow men and Mellow men only.
Then bold namesake, former longtime state senator and fierce Democratic political warlord Bob Mellow got busted for political corruption. Then he admitted his crimes and his guilt. Then he cried in court and headed off to a federal prison in South Carolina where he pines for days gone by.
But the Mellow men refused to budge. Steadfast in their loyalty to this degenerate gangster, they stood unflinching in their defense of a man who disgraced the community, himself, his family and the college he controlled.
Their pious approval of his “mistakes” became a treacherous and defamatory attack on the character of the school they claimed to serve. They made fools of themselves. They tried to make fools of us, trying to drag us down into the gutter of dirty politics in which their hero wallowed for decades.
And they actually expected good people to support them in their duplicity.
Good people refused.
Day after day, week after week, month after month we railed against the masters and their bad example. I questioned how they could willfully damage the reputation of a school where young people matriculated with hope of a decent, honest future fueled by the sweet knowledge they culled from classes on the architecturally majestic Scranton campus.
But the bitter friends of Bob Mellow stood firm in their ignorance.
Their names now matter little. They are still and will forever remain nothing more than mealy-mouthed friends of Bob Mellow.
The former college president whom Mellow appointed to the state gambling commission who stood by a felon friend accused of associating with organized crime is now and will always be just another friend of Bob Mellow. The current college president whom Bob Mellow appointed to the state ethics commission of all places and who served with honor at the Pentagon during the Sept. 11 attack is now and will always be just another weak-kneed friend of Bob Mellow. The state senator who replaced Bob Mellow and serves in his shadow while refusing to say a bad word about the criminal is now and will always be just another friend of Bob Mellow.
Like their weak spirits, their power will eventually wane.
What will remain is the legacy of strength and honor that characterized those of us who are not friends of Bob Mellow.
I also remain terribly skeptical as to the truth and the motive to drop Mellow’s name from the theater. I applaud no one on the board of trustees. They are a day late and a dollar short, which, I believe, shapes the real reason they decided to throw Bob Mellow under the stage.
Money is behind this decision.
Just as money and power drove Bob Mellow, money and power drive this decision.
Had the college directors been truly concerned about the school’s reputation and truly acted in the best interests of students and staff, they would have moved on this decision the day after Bob Mellow pleaded guilty. Not only did they refuse to change the theater name, they issued a press release putting the world on notice that they would no longer even answer questions or further discuss the matter.
Such pompous power posture is pure Bob Mellow.
Months later, they suddenly changed their minds.
Am I suspicious?
Is Bob Mellow a despicable con man?
The Lackawanna College administration and trustees do not lead. They follow whenever opportunity arises. They do for themselves and their friends and cronies. They play a pathetic political game that is slowly but surely beginning to lose power over the lives of decent people.
Yes, the Lackawanna College gang that couldn’t think straight seems to have finally learned something.
But do not trust this gang.
Trust your instincts.
Do not be known as a friend of Bob Mellow, defined as a person whose sole motivating characteristic for progress is the profit margin.