Florida fraternities behaving badly
Bottom Line: Your daily doses of nonsense in the media and my takes on them...
Excerpt: Two Florida universities found unwanted attention this week over spring hazing incidents that led to life-threatening injuries for two students.
On Monday, the University of Florida in Gainesville suspended its chapter of Delta Chi for two years — until May 9, 2022 — after members of the fraternity tried to cover up why a pledge had a blood alcohol level that was four times the legal limit after a “Big Brother” ceremony, The Independent Alligator reported.
The fraternity violated four Student Conduct Codes, the Greek Conduct Committee decided. These include “serving alcohol to underage students and hazing, which led to the hospitalization of a student in critical condition with risk of fatality,” according to the campus newspaper.
Delta Chi has been operating on a limited capacity since the February incident in which fraternity brothers drove the inebriated pledge to the hospital, bypassing a closer university trauma center, and never called 911, the Alligator reported.
Meanwhile, a warrant was issued for the arrest of Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity member Oliver Walker, 20, on Aug. 30.
Walker, who has not yet been arrested by the Leon County Sheriff’s Office as of Wednesday morning, is accused of striking a frat brother at Florida State University in April with such force the 20-year-old student suffered a skull fracture when he hit the ground unconscious and lost a tooth, The Tallahassee Democrat reports. The unnamed frat member was slapped, or punched — accounts vary — during a “Scumbag of the Week” Alpha Epsilon Pi game played with brothers of the fraternity but not among pledges.
In the game, frat members spin a large wheel in which various punishments are displayed and then carried out.
Hot Take: College partying isn’t new. Frats behaving badly isn’t either. The question is what it’ll take before the end of this type of nonsense stops, or if simply and end of “Greek Life” is what it takes. Reading about this stuff reminded me of something I that happened when I was in school (over twenty years ago now). As part of a hazing ceremony a friend/pledge I knew was blindfolded and driven out to the swamps about fifteen miles away from campus at night and dumped out of the car. A couple of days later he emerged with a hell of a story. It was never reported, and no one was ever punished for it. The point is with many of the recent problems at colleges across our state and the country, these are just the stories we hear about. The odds are the problems are much more pervasive.
We have a nephew who just started college this semester. At the end of Rush Week he decided against joining a fraternity because he said they all just appeared to be drinking clubs. He’s 18. What does that tell you about what’s going on? And the truth is if you think back to your frat days you probably have your own stories. Again, it’s nothing new but like just about everything else today, bad behavior is increasingly being taken to the extreme.