Hazing is an initiation process involving harassment. This action could, or may, intentionally or unintentionally endanger a student’s admission to an organization. Unfortunately hazing has been a common practice across college campuses. Many agree that hazing has no place on campus and should be eliminated. Plain and simple, hazing can be dangerous! Not only does it kill innocent people, it mocks, embarrasses and tortures them.
This causes physical, mental, and emotional harm or distress. There are anti-hazing laws in every state except Arizona, Alaska, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana, Michigan, Oregon, Nevada, New Mexico, and Vermont. Hazing expels and jails people. It also closes chapters and raises organizational dues. There are no winners in hazing. This tradition that teaches “respect” for the group and its members should be replaced with another tradition, education.
Actions of hazing include: keeping dates and time of initiation a secret, making pledges use separate entrances to the house, paddling or striking, telephone duty, treasure hunts, road trips, forcing exercise, forced to carry items such as bricks, rocks, matches, coins, books, paddles, forced to eat or drink disgusting materials, working parties, preventing personal hygiene, physical harassment such as pushing, cursing or shouting, attending in a Hell week activities before being initiated, practice periods of silence, and any other activity.
All of these may result in physical, emotional, or mental distress. Here are a few terrible incidents due to hazing. Two fraternity pledges were killed in Louisiana State University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Both died of alcohol poisoning after fraternity members supplied them with alcohol and coerced them to drink. “They drank themselves to death. ” A student at Texas University, died after the Cowboys “picnic. ” He drowned in a nearby creek with a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit.
The organization was banned for five years and upon returning two or more years on probation. In Boston, in 1997, an investigation was conducted after a former fraternity member was forced to binge drink, and died from the consequences. Scott Krueger, 18, of Massachusetts Institute of Technology died, following a night of binge drinking at a fraternity. The Sigma Chi fraternity was investigated for hazing after the house was caught on fire. Before initiation candles were lit, which caused the blaze. The fraternity was charged with hazing and suspended until last May.
In February 1994, in Missouri State University, Micheal Davis blacked out after going through a “seven station circle of physical abuse. ” Davis suffered from lacerated kidney and liver, broken ribs and bruises on his upper body. In another incident, 10 cadets of the Citadel Military College were charged with hazing. Two women cadets reported that they were victims of hazing. Their clothes were set on fire while they were wearing them. At Alfred University in New York, a football game was forfeited due to hazing of veteran teammates.
Five freshmen players were allegedly treated for alcohol poisoning after an off-campus party. The Chi Upsilon was found guilty of hazing. It was overheard that new members were to sleep in a tent, only given hot chocolate and blankets, outside a cabin. A frat house at Dickinson College was closed after a hazing tragedy. A pledge fell out of the window after vast amounts of alcohol. The University of Colorado was suspended following a hazing incident where a pledge was forced to drink shots of vodka every time he missed a trivia question. He was later hospitalized.
The University of Washington was also accused when two police discovered pledges in their underwear, covered in peanut butter and Crisco. A west Texas University freshman received injuries to his kidneys when he was forced to squat and recite fraternity information. A fraternity pledge at a Louisiana University became blind after being hit in the head by a frying pan. A pledge at Texas University was handcuffed and forced to drink large amounts of alcohol. He later died, an autopsy revealed that his blood alcohol level was four times more than the legal limit.
At Arizona State a freshman suffered psychological damage during a hazing incident. He wasn’t able to sleep and was forced to do 2,000 push-ups a day. At Bloomsburg University in 1996 a pledge fell off a balcony at Delta Pi and was killed. This year the fraternity lost their mansion and is being sued. Some signs that hazing may be occurring are hesitation to questions, pledges look like they have not slept, showered, changed clothing or eaten. Conversation stops when you enter the room, more than what seems a normal ritual activity, yelling or screaming at a constant level or pledges dress in a certain way.
Carrying certain items, eating certain foods or eating a certain times, strange coming and goings at the chapter house and pledges are at the house more than necessary. Hazing has been socially accepted because it’s been a “tradition. ” No one knows when or how long hazing dates back. Many feel that “tattling” will show the other members that they’re not up to the challenge. It all has to do with group mentality, peer pressure, and the fear of losing the teams disapproval. The leaders of hazing feel a sense of superiority and therefore cause danger to most pledges.