What lengths does a person have to go to prove that he is worthy enough to join a Greek organization?
In the case of Florida A&M University sophomore Marcus Jones, pledging the Alpha Xi Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. was more than he bargained for.
According to a March 10, article published in the Tallahassee Democrat, Jones sustained internal bleeding, a hematoma -which is localized swelling containing blood. Also, as a result of Jones’ injuries he will require three to four weeks of recovery that result in him having to retire for the rest of the spring semester.
Can being a part of a Greek organization be so enticing that taking a trip to the hospital or being humiliated be considered just part of the process?
Did everybody else really do it? But of course, this will probably be one of those things you just look back on and laugh at.
I doubt it.
If everybody else sustained the same injuries from beatings and were all equally humiliated, it makes me question the character of that individual and the character of those in the organization who allow such barbaric practices to take place.
How important is it really to belong to a Greek organization?
A friend of mine compared pledging to joining a gang: they both have certain colors and signs and people have died as a result of initiation.
The only difference between joining a gang and pledging a frat is you don’t have to pay for your beating, you get to fight back and being “jumped-in” is only a one-time thing.
The sad part is I agree with my friend.
As Rosa Parks said, “If you want to be respected for your actions, your behavior must be above reproach.” If you don’t want to be compared to groups that are viewed negatively, you must not participate in activities that would generate such a comparison.
Our ancestors endured over 400 years of beatings and fought to free themselves from slave owners, yet a select few of us are volunteering to be beaten and embarrassed all in the name of being Greek.
Call me cruel, unfair or just plain unsympathetic, but I can’t feel sorry for Jones or any other person who has been hazed.
Kappa Alpha Psi has the responsibility to ensure that things like this do not occur. But let’s face it, we’re all grown and people can only do to you what you allow them.
Individuals should be asked to display their love and dedication for the organization and what they can offer to strengthen the unit as a whole, not to succumb to humiliating violence just to cross.
Amber Vaughan is a senior public relations student from Pensacola. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.