Proposed Abolition of Fraternities, Sororities

The recent death of University of the Philippines student Cris Anthony Mendez most probably during initiation rites of the Sigma Rho reminded me of my brush with a fraternity when I was still a college student of Southwestern University.

A friend invited me to an orientation session with one of the fraternities in the campus. In that meeting, I shot the most number of questions that I later found out was resented by members of the fraternity. Of course, they hid their resentment and proceeded to persuade me to join the scheduled initiation rite.

I later decided not to join the group and refused to go with a friend who was set to undergo hazing (he was told to bring a paddle for the purpose). That friend would then tell me that had I joined the initiation rite, I would have been made to pay for my inquisitive bent. Some members of the group were itching to physically harm me.

Indeed, anything can happen in initiation rites that involve hazing. If one or two members are sadists by nature or are drunk, then the possibility of physical harm or death is high. It takes but some prodding to turn meek college students into a mob out to kill a recruit.

One cannot blame, therefore, Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago for pushing for the abolition of fraternities and sororities. Of course, that is an extreme reaction to Mendez’s killing but it should be enough to prod fraternity leaders to change their method of recruitment, like doing away with initiation rites altogether.

In fact, hazing is not the only problem for fraternities and sororities; fights with other fraternities erupt, too. In Cebu, the quarrel between the Alpha Kappa Rho and Tau Gamma Phi has resulted in violent clashes and deaths, and the “war” has yet to end.

I agree that majority of fraternities and sororities are good and their projects have benefited many people. But deaths due to hazing and clashes with rival fraternities and sororities should stop. Perhaps with a Senate committee investigation on Mendez’s death all angles of the issue will be discussed.

Candido O. Wenceslao, September 4, 2007

10 Responses to Proposed Abolition of Fraternities, Sororities

  1. Miriam Santiago is a fascist hag. She can’t just abolish something that is already part of the youth’s culture. These kids will just turn underground like gangsters. It would be inviting more and more violence.

    Why couldn’t we just listen to the likes of Prof Randy David who suggested that soro should be encouraged to get involved with their frat affiliates and to act as buffer to this macho impunity? To “effiminize” these violent boys!

  2. Yre says:

    oh yeah? a culture which teaches you what?

  3. nebo says:

    is there any difference between student activists and fraternities??? im just curios…

  4. nebo says:

    is there any difference between student activists and fraternities??? im just curious…

    can any one give me a lecture about this???

    i really want to know more about student activism and those who joined people power 1…

  5. nebo says:

    what is the purpose of an initiation???

  6. @ Yre:

    like character formation, leadership, social responsibility, time management (between juggling studies and projects?), friendship, ethics, social protocols, etcetera… i’m not saying it’s all that good, shemps kahit anong bagay may pros and cons talaga… just like sex — you can’t tell kids: don’t do it! gagawin at gagawin din nila yun… might as well teach them how to do it safe para walang sisihan in the end, di ba?

  7. agentdeb_21 says:

    i think Filipinos have that mob mentality, usually we think that frat and sor have to do the initiation rites inorder to admit a person in the group but actually, we can make other means rather than inducin gphysical pain. “boba lang ang pinoy pagdating dun”… gusto kc na astig lage kahit nakakamatay na…

  8. agentdeb_21 says:

    the problem about the Filipinos is that we have mob mentality, mostly we think that physical pain is necessary to admit someone in a frat or sor, well, infact there are alot of means in admitting someone in a frat or sor.. bakit hindi kaya subukan ng mga org. yung pamamaraan na nakakatulong.?noh?

  9. agentdeb_21 says:

    kaya din cguro hindi umuunlad ang Pilipinas dahil boba parin tayo sa maliliit na bagay.. if we are only to use fraternities and sors as a mean para makatulong, aba’ malaking porsyento na yun sa pag-asa nating umunlad…we are so blind about the things that we can use,.!

  10. agentdeb_21 says:

    Filipinos are not that dull to think, they just keep their eyes closed. if only they are to open it alot of things can be opened and oppurtunities to come.Its not the government that has done the mistakes, its actually all of us. kahit pa bigyan ng panukala na tanggalin ang frat at sor,, underground society ang mag\ngyayari.. y not take a reverse psychology?

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