3 Things Society Overreacts to

I understand that as a society, there are things wrong, and we must address them. But recently we have started making mountains out of mole hills, making issues larger than they are, and blowing every little word out of proportion.


1) Bullying: Almost every month in High School, there was some sort of program/meeting/assembly about bullying. I went to an all white, extremely middle-class, public high school. While people were terribly mean to each other, there was never really bullying. And I get that it is a problem with certain people, in different schools, but really the way that it blew up for 3 or 4 years was extremely unnecessary.


If you’re getting bullied on the internet the best fix is to shut off the computer… If you’re getting bullied in real life, just walk away. No one cares as much as the adults in school think they did. Instead of spending at least a week over the school year talking about a subject that didn’t entirely pertain to us, really it is up to the parents to deal with that. A good ole smack to the back of the head is really all that is needed to fix a bully, not a seminar on feelings.


2) Hazing: This is an issue. People died, and laws needed to be put into place. But society has taken this issue, and turned it into everything. My sorority is not allowed to do anything anymore. There are no requirements to meet to be initiated. Basically you have to be recruited, then sit around for 7 weeks not really learning anything, and not having to do anything you don’t want to. We can’t even encourage them to do certain things, like getting to know each other better, trying to meet all the sisters in the chapter, or even scavenger hunts. Society took a handful of terrible incidents, and blew it into a complete national overhaul.


Every national chapter is too worried covering their asses as to not get thrown into the news that chapters walk around on eggshells, making everything optional, and not doing anything that may be seen as possibly a slight suggestion of hazing. Its bullsh*t. Paddling, naked laps, bottle squats, and body shaming. These are things that should never be done to another person. These are the types of hazing that should be banned, and that people should get in trouble for. Conversations, games, knowledge about the organization you are joining, getting to know each other, and  responsibilities around campus. These are things that are banned, that chapters can get totally f-ed over for, that make no sense to me. And its not just in Greek life. Its sports, student government, classes. Every one is watching their backs and turning into complete babies. How are people supposed to know how to set up the sports equipment if they aren’t taught how to as freshmen?


3) Shaming: There is now a disclaimer on the first amendment. No longer is it freedom of speech. Now its the freedom to say things that don’t offend any one and doesn’t have an opinion on anything, and that can’t be taken negativity. Say someone has slept with a guy she shouldn’t have? Slut shaming. Say someone that large is unhealthy and more likely to develop heart problems? Fat shaming. Say you don’t like the way someone’s body looks? Body shaming. Anything you have a differing opinion on is shaming.


My friend recently commented on how a celebrity had gained a few pounds. He was then immediately attacked by everyone else in my group about how he is fat shaming, and body shaming, and how he didn’t have the right to talk about her like that because his views weren’t perfect. Basically he was allowed he wasn’t aloud to voice his opinion. Stop! It is a first amendment right that you can say what you want, as long as you’re not threatening the life or rights of another human being. You can say what ever you want. And people are allowed to disagree with you. But no one should ever feel like what they believe in is not allowed to be shared openly.




Greek Life On and Off the Silver Screen

While Hollywood has always shown its perspective on Greek life, there is often little truth to the images on the silver screen. When looking at a few of the well-known movies centered around Greeks, we can see the differences between cinematic myth and reality.

21 & Over Starring Justin Chon, Miles Teller, and Skylar Astin (2013)

MYTH: There are fraternities and sororities that only allow people of a certain race or ethnicity to join. In the movie, a Latina-only sorority filled with crazed, vengeful girls, armed with golf clubs and other weapons chases the main characters out of their chapter house. (No. the main characters should not have broken into the house, but that’s not the point here.)
REALITY: While racial and religious restrictions have been abolished in all North-American Interfraternity Conference and National Panhellenic Conference organizations, fraternities and sororities can be oriented towards students who have an interest in certain cultures or cultural identities.


Animal House Starring John Belushi, Tim Matheson, and John Vernon (1978)

MYTH: Anyone involved in Greek life is stupid and doesn’t work hard in school. In the movie, the Delta Tau Chi fraternity has an extremely low GPA, with all of the brothers having GPAs ranging from 0.0 to 1.6.
REALITY: At nearly every college and university that offers Greek life, the average Greek GPA is higher than that of their non-Greek counterparts. In addition, sororities and fraternities have their own standards for the minimum GPA allowed before an individual is placed on academic probation.




Why I’m Proud to be Anti-Hazing

It feels like a constant game of Russian Roulette when I refresh my Facebook and wait to see Greek letters splashed across the “Trending Topics” sidebar. Of course, just a few days ago there they were: Alpha Tau Omega at IU had been shut down after a video of them sexual assaulting and hazing had been released to the media. I was hurt and embarrassed – but unfortunately not surprised.

Hazing, by definition, is “humiliating and sometimes dangerous initiation rituals, especially as imposed on college students seeking membership to a fraternity or sorority.”  To some people, hazing is ingrained in the very culture of sorority and fraternity life. The counter argument I see constantly is that it’s a tradition. Many see it as a right of passage into their sisterhood or brotherhood, but sometimes it doesn’t end that way. Since 2000,  fifty-seven people have died from injuries received via hazing. These brothers and sisters never made it to their initiation. They never grew in love and respect to your organization because they never got to see the next day. This doesn’t change the opinions or actions of many, however. Hazing is still a big part of “going Greek” for some people. I cannot speak for others, but I will say three things about myself: I was not hazed, I will not haze, and I do not believe in hazing.  

It might not sit well with everyone, I’m sure. Some people think I missed some huge landmark and keys of wisdom by not being hazed. Did I earn my letters? I absolutely did. I earned my letters the day my sisters considered me and knew I was worthy of becoming a part of their sisterhood. I won the right to my letters when I signed my bid card and pledged my loyalty and life to my sorority. I learned the ropes through a positive and uplifting new member development program. It was challenging, but never once did I feel humiliated or belittled by my sisters. To me, hazing is not brave. It’s not smart. And it sure as hell isn’t what our founders wanted from us.



Sorority Girl Describes Recruitment Experience That’ll Surprise You

Written By: Jessica Marie Clinch

I have to preface this post by saying that it’s not what I was envisioning writing about on my blog today. But, after seeing a Cosmo article circling around social media that is titled, “Confession: Why Getting Hazed by My Sorority Was Weirdly Worth It,” I knew I had to say something.

As some of you know, I am a proud alumna of Sigma Kappa from the Kappa Zeta chapter at Elon University. I love my sorority, the friendships I have made, and the leadership experience I gained through being a sister. For me, it was an overall positive experience, which is why I hate the negative connotation that many Greek organizations receive. However, I am now unfortunately being reminded by this article of why certain Greek organizations have such a negative connotation, and why they are tainting the image of Greek life for many other organizations like my own that do not deserve that reputation.

Much of the negativity toward sororities and Greek life comes from hazing. Hazing is known to vary from organization to organization. There are some that do not haze at all, like my own, and others, like the organization mentioned in this article, who have hazed so much that it has caused their new members to hate themselves and have endless breakdowns. The author of the article says,

About two weeks in, we became conditioned to fear what was called a “line-up.” We’d get a mass email telling us to be at the house in seven minutes wearing all-white with our faces scrubbed clean of makeup. We’d have to line up in alphabetical order and take turns stepping into one spotlight in the middle of the house basement. All of the sisters sat in the dark. We couldn’t see anything, but they could see all of us and our every imperfection…At any given line-up, at least a third of my pledge class cried. I cried the first time. I tried to laugh through all the others — but we got yelled at for laughing.

Sounds fun, right? The sickening part of this article is that the girl is actually promoting the hazing that made her have regular visits to the school therapist! She says,

As horrible as hazing felt, it allowed me to bond more closely with some of my now-best friends than any experience ever had.

I’m sorry, and excuse my language, but I have to call BS on that.  I highly doubt you are really that close with girls who yelled at you and degraded you. And making friendships with girls in your new member class who were enduring the same thing? Sure, I could see it happening, but bonding over how scared you were about being tormented is not a great basis for friendship.

What I’m attempting to get at with this post is that not all organizations are like this. I did not get hazed at all in my organization. I have to admit that at times, I was curious about what being hazed was like, because all of the “cool” organizations were doing it. Now I understand how ridiculous that thought process was.


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Yes, we had bonding activities when we first joined Sigma Kappa. But, they involved playing games where we would get to know each other better (that were not derogatory), going out for frozen yogurt as a new member class, going to trips in the mountains together, getting ready for parties together in our dorm rooms, having new member class movie nights together, and much more. Does that sound lame to you? Well, I would pick that any day over being locked in a basement.

I had the chance to bond with a group of girls with friendships that formed out of love, trust, and respect. And now, I still talk to these girls on a regular basis, even though we have graduated and are in all parts of the country. A sorority that welcomes its new members with love and appreciation will result in much stronger relationships and ties to that sorority than one that welcomes its new members with hazing.

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Sigma Kappa has undoubtedly given me my best friends from college. I gained amazing roommates who were also my sisters. I gained a family who is a perfect blend of my sweet and a little nutty sides. And I gained a group of sisters who I could count on to support me in anything, whether it be a charitable activity that I was leading for our organization or a personal endeavor.

It has also given me a group of girls to experience life with. I studied abroad for the first time with two of my sisters, I carved my first pumpkin with my sisters, I’ve met my sisters’ biological families, I learned to loosen up a bit and grow into the person I am today with the encouragement of my sisters, I celebrated New Years Eve and birthdays with my sisters, and so much more.

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And yes, sometimes we can look intimidating, but it’s only when we’re preparing our stage faces for Greek Week Dance.

So, the moral of this post is that not all Greek organizations are the same. There are organizations that really do support you, where you will make lasting friendships. I truly hope you find, or are in, an organization like that, just like I did.