hazing

Controversial Issues at Florida State

September 14, 2015 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

A number of controversial issues can be found at every university. At Florida State, there are so many students attending that it’s nearly impossible to not have topics up for debate. There are a few issues in particular that have been stirring for the past few years. The biggest and most recent one is the question of whether or not guns should be allowed on the campus. There are so many sides to this argument that it needs to be examined in full detail.

Almost a year ago, there was a shooting at FSU’s main library, in which we were lucky enough to have escaped with no fatalities excluding the gunman. However, three students were seriously wounded because they were unable to protect themselves. After this situation, the question arose of whether or not students should be allowed to carry concealed weapons on campus as a form of protection. While no laws have been passed approving this notion, there is still debate as to whether it not it will improve campus safety, or if it will only increase threats. The argument lies in the idea that innocent, unarmed students have no way of saving themselves if more situations occur like the one in the library.

As of right now, students with valid permits are only allowed to leave guns locked in their cars during football games, which is something that has only recently been approved. It is still not acceptable for students to carry concealed weapons across campus. In my personal opinion, the idea that several students could be walking the campus carrying a concealed weapon is more dangerous than not, and therefore should not be permitted, Although students should certainly have the right to protect themselves, the more that possess guns, the higher chance of more tragic situations occurring. For example, if a student is drunk on campus, stressed over finals, fighting, or whatever the case, a weapon may become their go-to. These weapons are not things that should be taken lightly. If the campus wants students to have more protection, then security should be increased instead. Police officers and security guards should be the only armed individuals on campus, being that they are trained and know to use them in only dire situations.

The Prevention of Hazing

The Prevention of Hazing

Another controversial issue that occurs at FSU deals with Greek life. While I will not name any organizations in particular, it’s a known fact that some of the sororities and fraternities oftentimes participate in hazing during rush and initiation week. This is something that I do not agree with. These organizations are meant to accept you as a person and make you feel as if you have become a member of a small family. Therefore, placing these students in uncomfortable and sometimes very dangerous situations is not how to make them feel “at home.” I think greater prevention measures need to be taken in order for hazing to be completely avoided at all costs. There is currently a site dedicated to this issue, which FSU pledges that hazing should never be utilized. This is certainly a step in the right direction. However, more needs to be done to ensure it never occurs. There are so many situations in which students are desperate to be initiated as members of an organization that they never reveal what their initiation tasks consisted of, even if they were life-threatening. Unfortunately, it leaves too many organizations to do things that are often left unsaid.

So with these two issues stirring at FSU, I think it’s important that everyone provides their opinion on the matters and acts upon them. Controversial issues will always take a while to be resolved, but it is ultimately up to us to make a difference.

Hazing

March 7, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges, Health

Let me start this off by saying I am not advocating hazing or am I denouncing it. Hazing is one of the biggest hot button issues in schools across the country today. In this article I will only be giving my personal opinions on the matter.

Not a year goes by that I don’t hear a news story about some poor freshman who died as a result of hazing or someone who was horribly injured and is suing. In all the media swarm about hazing, everyone knows about this hazing ritual or that hazing punishment. For the vast majority it is no more than hearsay. One example I’ve heard is a fraternity making their pledges sit on a HOT metal chair and recite the entire Greek alphabet. I don’t mean hot like uncomfortable. I mean hot as in burning and requiring medical attention. I heard this so I have no idea if it is actually true or not. This is the case with most hazing acts outside of the few tragedies that make the news. The truth about hazing is that it DOES happen. Not just in social fraternities or sororities either. Athletic teams, clubs, cultural fraternities, academic or professional fraternities and sororities, it doesn’t matter. It happens. Now, that does not mean that every organization does it, just the few that do make the news. As a result schools are taking a hard stance against hazing. Since social fraternities and sororities are most often associated with it, they face very strict penalties if it does happen. This results in very vague anti-hazing rules and regulations that allow almost anything to fall under the term of hazing.

Personally, I think that there is a limit, that when crossed, is most definitely hazing and is absolutely, 100%, not okay. Shit like brands, pledge fight club, or paddling or beatings, the stuff you hear about on the news, is totally not okay. There is no benefit that comes from that, it is only an abuse of power and beyond being an asshole, its sadistic. That being said, I do disagree with the vague anti hazing rules. Simply because, under the strictest definition, stuff like having a pledge pin to wear, or taking quizzes as a part of pledge education can be considered hazing. Stuff like that is harmless and a legitimate part of pledging. It actually serves a purpose unlike some other hazing. A great example with this is signature books. A common thing is for pledges to carry around a note-book in which they need to get every member’s signature. This is considered hazing. The reasoning behind this makes sense. Signature books often come with the attitude of “Oh you want my sig? Here do my dishes and my laundry and I’ll give you my sig” I wouldn’t say this is the worst thing in the world, but it is taking advantage of a person. I understand why this is wrong and I support that. But, the major point of signature books is that you will get to know each individual member and interview with them. That is a legitimate function that serves an important purpose. How can you expect to be part of an organization without knowing the members?

Overall, I would say that anti hazing regulations do help. Most hazing there really is no benefit to. My only issue is that some practices that are actually useful like signature books, get lumped in with stuff like making a pledge drink piss. There is a very delicate line between what is okay and what is not, and I think that more people need to just be smart about how they walk that line.

I image searched "Hazing" and this was the least offensive picture I could find.

I image searched “Hazing” and this was the least offensive picture I could find.

Greek Life: Pay With Money Not Your Life

September 12, 2013 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges

Hazing

Hazing

When people think college, the first couple of thoughts usually go through their heads have to do with the stress they’ll endure when attending, the activities that they would want to get involved in such as athletics and, of course, Greek life. Now take that term and what are the first couple of thoughts that come to your head now? Some may say life long friends, the letters you get to wear proudly, but to most, hazing does and it rings a mental alarm.

For those of you who don’t know what hazing is or have not heard any stories about it, let me fill you in. Hazing is a bunch of humiliating, difficult, violating tasks that an organization imposes on new comers as an initiation into their organization. Hazing has led to emotional scarring, serious injury and death. It’s not some typical ritual that they have, it is a serious matter than many under estimate. Here’s where the problem is: you have upper class-men who hold the power of whether or not you are allowed into their group and you have willing freshmen who want to be in so badly that they don’t register how dangerous and ridiculous some of these tasks are; sadly enough many of them don’t begin to realize until the results begin to take a toll on them.

Fortunately, there are plenty of schools that have a handle on their Greek life situations and have banned hazing in any form. Monmouth has no tolerance for it and when they once could a group participating in the activities, they were immediately kicked off campus. Us hawks don’t tolerate that behavior. Of course there are going to be rituals and chores that you are going to have to do to get in and that’s fine! My friends have to not wear makeup for a week and write each sorority sister a personalized letter, and they didn’t find them good enough so they had to re-do all of them. My cousin had to run around at midnight to pick up all purple school supplies for each of her sisters. These are just examples of the harmless (yet very annoying) tasks that they might have you do. They’re not going to let you off too easy.

When joining Greek life, or any organization for that matter, and you begin to get the sense that something dangerous or violating is going to happen to be initiated, get out of that situation as quickly as possible. Seriously, it is not a game and it can lead you into bigger problems if you go through with it. If you don’t believe me look up ‘College Hazing Stories’ on Google. About half of the stories are about someone getting seriously hurt or dying.

If you have any idea that hazing may be happening with in your campus, please let someone know. By doing so, you could be saving someone from harm and even death and will be preventing others from experiencing it as well. Hazing is not an average college experience, it is dangerous.