The issue of fraternity and sorority hazing has been back in the news in a big way lately. And we’ve been talking about it here on Phi Beta Cons. Now another deeply disturbing hazing incident has been reported out of Boston University:
Police responded to complaints about a loud party at a house near the university early Monday morning. What they discovered in the basement left officers stunned–a group of five male students, stripped to their underwear, dangerously cold:
“All five were shivering and had horrified and fearful looks on their faces. They were all tied together via duct tape wrist to wrist to form a human chain. Officer asked if they were alright and got no verbal answer. Victim looked right at Officer and with tears coming down his face shook his head from right to left and back indicating no.”
Police say several condiment-type items were poured on the students, including flour, coffee grinds, fish sauce, chili sauce, honey, hot sauce, mustard, and empty sardine cans.
The students also had red welts on their backs, investigators said, indicating that they may have been beaten.
The fact that these five young men presumably consented, at least initially, to this hazing does not mean the perpetrators are innocent. As is often the case with these secretive hazing practices, the pledges likely didn’t know the extent of the hazing they were in for.
Students die because of this kind of thing.
Bottom line: Fraternity members who participate in violent hazing need to be sent to jail. The offending fraternity chapters need to be shut down. Only then will we begin to curtail this kind of behavior among those who, supposedly, constitute our nation’s brightest and best-educated youth.