Occasionally one of the four or so people who read this website ask me what prompted me to create Fraternityman.com.
Not a month after I started working for my fraternity I was fed up with how the entire higher education system was operating. We were getting in to the 2012 primary season and I was all sorts of worked up and in the midst of a major political transformation (or should I say a R[EVOL]UTION?).
My ideology, which I based on the idea that all men are created equal, was flipped on its head. Policies I thought would have been to the benefit of equality came out to me as the complete opposite and lacking in principle. It all applied equally to how I perceived fraternity, sorority and the issues that faced them. Not all can be fixed with a wave of the wand and money.
I realized that the things we as en entire field were doing were making little progress. I hated the ego that surrounded fraternity and sorority life; it was just a bunch of people constantly talking about all the good they do yet inexplicably incapable of making anything improve.
People were still dying and getting taken to the hospital and our only thought was to add one or two more rules. A majority of folks I talk to acknowledge the limited impact we’ve had, but rarely suggest that a new philosophical course is due.
As the years went by I tried a number of different outlets (Hardfracts.com, Bondfraternal.org, etc.) and messages until I figured out how another Greek Life blog could be different and useful.
There are hundreds of thousands of fraternity men and women whose ideas are ignored or openly mocked and we need a representative on the inside to start making a fuss. There are those of us who don’t just talk about how chapters resort to the same old thing no matter the sanctions, we aim to fix it with better ideas.
I believe that for too long fraternity and sorority has, like our country, continued on a path between false choices. The world and our world are not as simple as Total Frat Move vs. The Fraternal Values Movement. Our hands are not tied; people need to know this and demand more.
There needs to be at least one outlet publishing an entrepreneurial, restrained voice in a sea of Greek Life blogs that paste gold stars on old ideas and call them new. There needs to be a voice that those hundreds of thousands of people can agree with philosophically. I doubt I’m that voice, but I certainly aim for something different.
I can’t accurately suggest that anything I’ve posted has made a difference in anyone other than myself. This fall my team overhauled our assessment program to line up with much of what was posted about here. One populist step forward.
At the very least, student-oriented change in Fraternity & Sorority Life is now more real than a couple ideas posted on the web.