Working in the field of
Greek Life Fraternity & Sorority Life, I am regularly reminded of my need to embody the values of the Fraternity & Sorority Community. It is my job, as a paid frat star fraternity man, to remind our students that they need to be role models and beacons for those less fortunate than we who have uncovered the power of the Fraternal Values Movement.
So I think, instead of bashing the system like I typically do, I’ll give credit where it’s due:
[If this were a politically correct post I’d use this moment to say I cherish everyone in the field, understand the root of the Fraternal Values Movement and, as a member of a fraternity founded on the basis of diversity, believe that true inclusivity is king. Alas, this is not a politically correct post.]
Those who fight the fight against TFM. Thank you for focusing your efforts against our own little Death Star. We all know that men and women aged 18-22 cannot think for themselves, and that deaths related to hazing and alcohol are correlated to the creation of that website.
Those who ensure we shame those with privilege. Heaven forbid a privileged, southern, homophobic, racist white male has any friends or fraternity. The only way to teach him a lesson is to exclude him from Fraternity & Sorority Life all together and assault him via twitter. The way to get anyone to join your cause, is to tell them that they “don’t get it,” and therefore should have no opinion or involvement in the matter.
Those who stopped TKE’s Hooter’s Fest. We all know the women at Hooters work against their will and are a disgrace to women across the nation. How dare a fraternity use these brothels to raise funds for charity. . . such sinful beings.
Those who remind me that religion has no place in FSL. It is ridiculous to assume that student should at any point incorporate their religious beliefs into their way of life, and HELLLLLL no if they talk about it at all. They are clearly close-minded and as such, we hate them. Also, any student who says they love Jesus shall be stoned via eye rolls. [AFA Handbook 3:29 and thrillingly witnessed by yours truly at UIFI 2013]
Those who remind me that change is slow. You’ve been there. Through all the terrible times and ill-fated programs aimed at reversing the course. It’s much easier to complain about how hard our problems are, how tough a time we have fighting it than to try ANYTHING NEW AT ALL EVER.
Those who remind me that 22+ are the ages to binge drink and have irrational sex. It’s important that our men and women learn from us at AFA conferences. We know that values are what one does, and what we do is get drunk at a hotel bar and sleep with the first man or woman we see wearing a “I hate heteronormativity” button.
Those who work to eliminate words like “pledge” and “rush.” The first step to eliminating hazing and poor recruitment is to eliminate the words that make them happen. It also makes us feel good when people don’t say things we don’t like and is more important to address that than their underlying feelings or perspective. The lesson:
Chapters that say “pledge” = Hazers
Chapters that say “new member” = On the right track
It’s important to ignore the chapters in that second category. They “get it.”
Those who define what “get it” means. Imagine what the student experience would be like if professional associations were not focused on liability and public perception!? Just think of the Armageddon that’d happen if we spent time and money working for students instead of “advancing” our professional careers, complaining about how long we work and whining about how little we are paid? They are so lucky to have us to care for them.
Those who’ve realized our founding purposes weren’t enough of a brand identity.Crazy thought: Some people get together, for a specific reason, start a group, come up with some brand words, and now we are having way too much trouble re-interpreting that for the 21st Century. Reason being? Our founders were naive fools; we are scholars better capable of re-interpreting everything they wrote down.
Those who exercise humility: Good thing you’ve publicized how hard you work, much you care and little you’re paid for your work on Facebook, Twitter, your blog and at conferences. Imagine that; we willingly take these jobs, then whine about it as if it’s some Jesus-level burden that others should respect. Way to sacrifice people.
But really, thank you. Everyone sees now that we come from a genuine place. They see our moral fiber in every tweet, every post about which new program we are traveling to and “excited for.” They see our work ethic in every blog about how brainless students are and how we need to mold them into proper fraternity men and women like the Christians did in Africa.
Finally, we know that those who don’t believe what we believe, or agree with what we say, have no place in our inclusive, diverse and brotherly community. You embody the spirit and character of our founders. 100%. One @BarackObama retweet at a time.
*Steps off soapbox. A barrage of tweets damn me to wear a scarlet “TFM” on my chest at every AFA conference henceforth*
STUDENTS: This is not “ammo” to use in your quest for unobserved drinking, sexing and questionable membership practices. This is not a damnation of those who genuinely care about your existence. Though we in the field do need a humble understanding of what we ineffectively waste our time on. Use this as a push to demand congruence so that you can end hazing, alcohol abuse, sexual abuse and drug abuse within your communities.