IN DEFENSE OF HAZING
Greek fraternities and sororities are all about rituals and acceptance. It undoubtedly becomes that special bond between men that can only be found within the thousands of Greek fraternal organizations that dot our nation’s college campuses. And manhood is a precious flower that can only bloom under the right circumstances – specifically, the circumstances arising from the sacred ceremonies known collectively as “hazing.”
Most hazings are mental in nature and in the end builds character and social skills. I can guarantee you will find that the vast majority of people with personal experience in this matter would vote to continue these age-old traditions. I agree that hazing, if done correctly, does have its benefits. We certainly have come to an age where we are way too spoiled and have no sense of humility. We expect to have everything handed to us on a silver platter without giving anything in return. Hazing winnowed out the few weak individuals but in most cases it strengthens them. It also taught us not to take things personal when someone got in your face. Hazing makes stronger individuals and it allowed for proper partitioning of one’s life. It motivates one to do what was right.
In light of this situation, I do not agree with beating pledges or being forced to drink or anything of that sort. To me, proper hazing means physical exercise, humorous pranks, house cleaning, really anything that doesn’t involve forcing them to drink alcohol or physical violence. I, however do not see a problem with people yelling at me or making me do push-ups or running, etc. I also do not see anything wrong with greeting big brothers and sisters; or becoming a servant for a semester, and those kind of things. I think that everyone needs a reality check at some point in their life and the earlier they get it the stronger they will be because of it. The average person has some sense of hard work and ethics from how they were raised. A true process is intended to “humble” and to “test”, which is why it is and should remain a challenge. It’s not so much about re-raising, as pushing beyond ordinary expectations. To start a debate on the philosophical, ethical, and moral dilemmas of hazing would lead only to a circuitous yelling match. In my experience, a person expects the same amount of hazing that was done to them. And if it is not apparent by my argument thus far, I believe hazing can be philosophically, ethically, and morally right when implemented properly.
And honestly speaking, people somehow have to realize that they need to stop protecting everyone for things that they do so willingly. I do not see why grown men and women are treated like children by the government and saying that consent is not a defense for hazing. That’s the problem with us. Everyone expects to get bailed out and no one takes responsibility for their actions. Hazing is not a crime unless it leads to bullying. Bullying is much different and needs to be stopped by the schools and parents as well as students who observe it. I have to agree that bullying someone is akin to a form of assault.
Fraternities and sororities hold a tremendous sense of entitlement – a different kind of entitlement that can only be achieved once you’re in. That attitude of inherent entitlement often carries over even after graduation.
To those, who for some reason, desire to be in an organization, then you have to meet the requirements to be one. In every organization there happens to be some concrete values that are somehow needed to be instilled in their members. As such deference and humility are just two of the values that I have learned. In reality fraternities doesn’t teach too many new things. It reinforces some very much needed life lessons and experiences. Hazing therefore is useful as a way of making the members conform to the methodology of a certain group. Also, it is certainly useful as a way to encourage bonding between members. Commitment is what separates a “worthless” Brother from a productive one. In the process, if it turns out you just can’t cope with what you’re required of, then find another group to join. Fraternities and sororities are not like gangs and do not beat you if you choose to quit (at least the one that I know of). Thus, if you can’t handle it, just simply QUIT! And in my opinion, where a no hazing policy implemented and successful, it would lead to the ultimate demise of the age-old rituals confined within the walls of fraternities, con-fraternities and sororities.