Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Get it Together Greek Life: Hazing is Bullying

Imagine if, while interviewing for a coveted position, you were told that you'd have to be beat in order to get the job.

Or if, after joining an after-work sports league, someone told you there would be a "jumping in" ceremony.

These situations are unthinkable and unlikely, and yet this is what happens across the national annually when many Black Greek Letter Organizations (BGLO) intake members.

'The New York Times' recently ran an article chronicling the legal woes of Sigma Gamma Rho stemming from allegations of hazing. In January, six members were arrested and charged with aggravated hazing at a Rutgers chapter of the sorority, after a pledge reported that she had been struck 200 times over seven days. More recently a former San Jose State student filed a civil lawsuit against their chapter of Sigma Gamma Rho after participating in their violent hazing process. The plaintiff, Courtney Howard, was beaten with wooden paddles and spoons, with the explanation being "it was supposed to be so you can feel what your ancestors went through in slavery, so you will respect what you came from,” Howard told the 'New York Times'.

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