All Articles Tagged "sororities"
On his album, The Blueprint III, Jay-Z rhymes on the song, “What We Talkin’ About”: “What we talkin’ ’bout, fiction or we talkin’ ’bout fact? You talkin’ ’bout fiction? Hold up; pardon my back.” Unfortunately, that’s often how I feel–as one of the few academics, and only law professor, who researches and writes about black Greek-letter organizations (BGLOs)–when I hear most people “talkin’ ’bout” BGLO hazing. This is National Hazing Prevention Week, and my hope is that this week there will be some serious and informed dialogue within and outside BGLOs about hazing. I am, however, not optimistic.
On 19 November 2011, Robert Champion, a 26 year-old, African American drum major in Florida A&M University’s “Marching 100″ band, collapsed on a charter bus and died as a result of hazing. Over the past ten months, commentators, critics, and concerned citizens have wondered and opined about why hazing persists within student culture. Many have focused — if not more, without question differently — on black student groups vis-a-vis their white counterparts, with physical violence seen as the main issue for the former and substance abuse the latter.
Read more at BlackVoices
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Moved by the recent death of Florida A&M drum major Robert Champion, U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson says she plans to introduce a federal anti-hazing bill when Congress returns from its holiday break next month.
In Champion’s case, police say he was punched and paddled in a hazing ritual during the school’s Marching 100 band trip to the annual Florida Classic in Orlando. An autopsy report showed that the 26-year-old’s “muscles were beaten so badly that they were destroyed like you would see in a heart attack.” So far, the Marching 100 has been suspended from all activities and its director placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s investigation but Wilson says overall, hazing is demeaning, dangerous, deadly, and needs to be stopped.
The question is whether a law would do any good? Most colleges and universities have policies prohibiting hazing as a means of granting students entrance into fraternities, sororities, and other campus organizations yet the practice still goes on. Some groups get suspended for a semester, maybe even a year, but when the next opportunity rolls around, hazing resumes and vows of silence and solidarity amongst members of these groups keep such practices from being openly exposed although the activity is well-known. So what good would a law do? It could ensure those who are caught hazing endure much stricter punishments, but for any practical change to come about, leaders of these organizations have to take a stance against hazing and truly desire to create alternative means of ushering in new members to a group that don’t threaten their well-being. As long as group members see hazing as a method of proving worth and loyalty, they will just find sneakier ways to go about it.
Do you think an anti-hazing law would stop this activity on college campuses?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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There’s definitely something chic about being a Greek. Especially about being a member of the National Pan-Hellenic Council. Hundreds of young people, and graduate students too, go MIA as they pledge each year, and once they cross and are initiated in, they gain massive opportunities to network, engage in community service and fundraising. The NPHC has been around since 1930, and since then, it has seen a number of it’s organizations’ members go on to do big things and make big names of themselves. However, most of the black Greeks that are well-known are honorary members–no offense to them. Here’s a list of just a few living members of the four historically black sororities that pledged, you might not have known about, or would expect. Represent for your letters ladies!
Without the forced social interaction of a high-school cafeteria or a college dorm, many adults find it hard to make new, lasting friendships. Finding yourself alone in a new city or suddenly without your former besties can be lonely and frustrating, particularly if you’ve never been a social butterfly. Fear not, for adult friendships are not only possible, but they probably aren’t as hard to cultivate as you may think! Here are some ways in which you can find new friends, long after the days of the sandbox: