I read an issue of the Famuan that addressed the incident of hazing that left one member of the band in the hospital. I was saddened to hear that this young man was beaten only because he was trying to fit in with other band members.
As a member of a Greek organization, I am all too familiar with the term “hazing.” Although it’s a common misconception, Greek organizations do not endorse hazing as a requirement for acceptance into the organization.
We have laws and policies concerning hazing that are in direct correlation with FAMU’s own statutes. And just like that band, we have rouges that sometimes break those laws. I believe those individuals should be punished.
As much as I am an advocate for discipline whenever laws are broken, I am also an advocate of fair and equal punishment. That being said, I believe it totally unfair for crimes of the same type to be dealt with by different rules.
When band members were charged with hazing, the administration rightfully took strong disciplinary action against the perpetrators. Yet, whenever members of Greek organizations are charged with the same crime, the organization as a whole is punished.
We have all been on campus and heard, “the so-and-so’s are off yard,” but when have you ever heard of the Marching 100 being suspended for a season. If the crimes match, shouldn’t the punishments match as well?
Granted there isn’t a Greek organization on campus that could fill in at the Classic games in Atlanta or Orlando, but does that justify giving them their own set of special rules? Isn’t the band made up of FAMU students just as these other organizations are?
I’m not saying the band should be suspended for a semester, that’s not only ridiculous, but it’s unfair to those band members who sweat and work hard on the patch.
It’s unfair to the band members who learn their music and routines, while studying diligently for classes. In the same regard, isn’t it equally unfair to punish members of other organizations who also played the dual role of participant and student, who put the same efforts into their endeavors as band members do?
Now it is not my intention to write on behalf of any organization – be it Greek or not. This is why I didn’t specify which organization I belong to. I just feel that since hazing is a matter of FAMU policy, it should be handled in a matter that is fair across the board.
We all go to the same school, regardless of what you choose to participate in during your matriculation. I truly want hazing in all organizations to stop. It pulls away from the main focus of the organization, and corrupts tradition.
The only way to stop this age-old practice is to change the mentality of the members – if you want to remove the problem from the organization. However, let’s stop punishing non-band organizations as a whole. ?
Not to be clichÃ©-ish, but it may be true that one bad apple spoils a bunch, but once you remove that apple is it necessary to throw away the whole bunch? After all there is another clichÃ©: you don’t throw the baby out with the bath water!
Yet the only way to stop this age-old practice is to change the mentality of the members–if you want to remove the problem from the organization as a whole.
Perhaps along with the disciplinary actions, those responsible should go through anti-hazing work shops. Last clichÃ©: You don’t throw the baby out with the wash!
Theodore Morgan II, 22, is a senior business administration student from Montgomery, Ala.