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Fraternity controversy at Swarthmore

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Replies to: Fraternity controversy at Swarthmore

  • doschicosdoschicos 20460 replies209 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 20,669 Senior Member
    @skieurope Do you not think parents bear some responsibility in raising individuals who engage in such behavior?
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  • skieuropeskieurope 37953 replies6569 discussionsSuper Moderator Posts: 44,522 Super Moderator
    MODERATOR'S NOTE:
    Do you not think parents bear some responsibility in raising individuals who engage in such behavior?
    Getting off-topic and not wanting to debate, but I do believe that parents can do everything right and the kid grows up without a moral compass. On the flip side, a parent can do everything wrong, and the kid becomes a pillar of society. So I do think it is naive to blanket statements of "If X had happened, then Y would not;" people are not perfect machines. Now let's move on.
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  • tpike12tpike12 490 replies9 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 499 Member
    Now the activists are demanding that the sorority at Swarthmore disband.
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  • donnaleighgdonnaleighg 1548 replies33 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,581 Senior Member
    ^source? I'm not seeing that via Google.
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  • tpike12tpike12 490 replies9 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 499 Member
    @donnaleighg - my source works in the administration. The students brought mattresses, ordered pizzas, had a DJ and blocked offices in Parrish. Apparently it smelled pretty bad so most of the people in the office worked at home on Friday. Not sure if they kept it up over the weekend though.
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  • BurgermeisterBurgermeister 359 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 365 Member
    edited May 6
    EyeVeee makes the best point, "I'm not going to litigate this on this forum ad-nauseum over the next few days, but I think it's worthwhile to consider the long term impacts of eliminating everything from the past. I'm OK with the elimination of all Greek organizations from campuses, but what is the replacement? What will bring people together to share a sense of community and create opportunities to interact with strangers? How are young adults going to learn to socialize with those they find attractive beyond swiping left and right?

    It's easy to destroy something, but sooner or later you have to build a replacement or accept teh permanent collateral damage."


    It will take time to sort this out. Policies and laws were broken by the protesters. Again, congrats to the boys for disbanding. The strongest supporters of their action were the fraternity alumni. I'll never forget the Middlebury VP who said men's lacrosse is their best donor group. Many Swat buildings are named after frat guys. Wonder how demographics of Swat donors will be affected by this?
    edited May 6
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  • CorinthianCorinthian 1782 replies61 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,843 Senior Member
    @tpike12 Don't these students have finals (including end of semester papers and projects) to prepare for? Swat is supposed to be so famous for its intensity and demanding curriculum. You'd think that they wouldn't have time right now to camp out in the admin building.
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  • tpike12tpike12 490 replies9 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 499 Member
    @coronthian - yep - plenty of students that just want this nonsense over so they can focus on finishing their finals.
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  • EyeVeeeEyeVeee 670 replies7 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 677 Member
    @Corinthian - I believe these sit-ins are pretty open (ie kids come and go throughout the day/night). If you look at the picture in the link, there are 16 people and at least 8 MacBooks open with all but 3 people who look engaged.

    Swat kids are smart enough to multi-task during protesting. You make an interesting point...if the school were to take down the wifi in the buildings....what would happen?

    https://www.foxnews.com/us/student-protesters-occupy-fraternity-house-want-it-closed
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  • lvvcsflvvcsf 2286 replies57 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,343 Senior Member
    I was in a Fraternity for a bit while I was in college and frankly didn't do well in that environment. There were far too many distractions and I was not mature enough at the time to deal with them. There can be positives for sure in the form of relationships built and a sense of belonging. However, you are asking a group of young men on their own for the first time to live together with virtually no supervision in an environment fraught with temptations to as a group behave well. That goes terribly wrong far too often. I'm amazed they do as well as they do in most cases. The question is how to have the benefits of fraternal organizations without the dangerous incidents that we hear about all to frequently. Is there a way to eliminate alcohol from houses? Avoid having women at parties? Ban initiations? You are requiring the entire group of young men to self police. Perhaps require each fraternity to pay a residential adult supervisor who would be beholden to the university and to the national fraternities?

    Maybe integrate fraternities allowing women to join? That would certainly change the dynamic. There might be more "safe spaces" in the house if women were around other than just at parties. I've had experiences with co-ed living conditions and found that living with someone as a housemate changes your perspective somewhat. Whatever happens you have to face that person on a regular basis. There are other people around to approve or disapprove of your behavior and it will be done when everyone is sober. Relationships become less about hormones and emotion and more about cooperation. You end up associating your housemates (and to agree all others) with their unmadeup, unsexy looking selves rather than the way they choose to present themselves at parties. You might also have men and women having more heart to heart talks about what is appropriate behavior.

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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 22121 replies14 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 22,135 Senior Member
    edited May 6
    Those things ^^ have been tried. Harvard forced the issue last year and now is being sued by 4 sororities, 2 fraternities, and several single sexed groups (the Glee Clubs!)
    and found that living with someone as a housemate changes your perspective somewhat.

    This was not a 'living in' situation at Swat - they all lived other places so they are going to have to get their commune experiences in the dorms. The Harvard groups did not live in a frat or sorority houses. Those Harvard single sexed Glee Clubs were dangerous, so good thing they are gone.

    I guess those who attend private elite colleges just can't make good decisions about who they want to associate with or what kind of parties they want to attend. They find it necessary to abolish Greek life rather than just choosing not to attend a party. Neither of my kids had these issues at their non-elite colleges. One did have a death at a party, but it was off campus and not a frat party.
    edited May 6
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  • BurgermeisterBurgermeister 359 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 365 Member
    Any good models for Greek life? Hamilton College? University of Richmond?

    SPOILER ALERT. Stop reading if you don't want to know what happened in the movie.

    The tense situation prior to release of the redacted documents involved several non-fraternity members. The back stories would make for a heck of a screenplay. Reminded me of a Quentin Tarantino standoff scene. The disband vote was the frat equivalent of Henry Fonda's Failsafe or The Best Candidate.
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  • 10s4life10s4life 2157 replies46 discussionsForum Champion UCLA Posts: 2,203 Forum Champion
    @twoinanddone Yep the national orgs are starting to sign onto the suit or at least filing briefs in support. My fraternities National HQ has signed onto the suit and part of all the dues that goes to nationals is now being funneled into the legal battle.
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  • privatebankerprivatebanker 5020 replies64 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,084 Senior Member
    edited May 6
    Dartmouth has coed greeklife options. Or they had these 20 years ago.

    Dartmouth was socially a bit lonely if you weren’t involved and this was an option for those who weren’t that into it.
    edited May 6
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  • apple23apple23 475 replies14 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 489 Member
    Any good models for Greek life? Hamilton College?

    One of the benefits of Hamilton's having disallowed residential Greek life can be seen in the choice of former fraternity houses now open to all students as residence halls, including first-years:

    https://www.hamilton.edu/campuslife/where-to-live/residence-halls/skenandoa

    https://www.hamilton.edu/campuslife/where-to-live/residence-halls/wertimer

    https://www.hamilton.edu/campuslife/where-to-live/residence-halls/eells

    https://www.hamilton.edu/campuslife/where-to-live/residence-halls/ferguson

    https://www.hamilton.edu/campuslife/where-to-live/residence-halls/woollcott
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 22121 replies14 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 22,135 Senior Member
    Yep the national orgs are starting to sign onto the suit or at least filing briefs in support.

    There are two court actions, one state and one federal, with 2 sororities a named party in each suit, and at least one fraternity and several individuals and other groups named in each.

    It's not an option for the sororities to go co-ed and remain part of their national organizations.

    I understand (but don't agree) why a school doesn't want greek life on campus, but why should they care if their students join off campus organizations? Why do they care that a student wants to join a single sexed glee club, the girl scouts of America, or the Knights of Columbus? Aren't the students mature enough to decide for themselves what they want to do with their own time and who they want to spend the time with? Can a student not belong to a group that supports Women's Heart Health but meets off campus and be captain of the ski team?

    I don't get it.

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  • ninakatarinaninakatarina 1594 replies44 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,638 Senior Member
    Heh. We're waiting to hear back from Swarthmore on waitlist and they hadn't notified anybody of anything yet. I guess admissions is a wee bit distracted right now.
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  • doschicosdoschicos 20460 replies209 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 20,669 Senior Member
    I doubt that's the reason.
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  • tpike12tpike12 490 replies9 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 499 Member
    Example 5,438 of how social justice activists are never satisfied. Now the Swarthmore kids are on a hunger strike and they are demanding the resignation of the Director of Public Safety.
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