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A Call To Action

Written by Drew Logsdon (Western Kentucky) 

Do you believe that hazing is okay? Do you believe that there are degrees of hazing, some more tolerable than others? Do you believe that candidates must “earn” their right to become an initiated brother? If you answered yes to any of the above, feel free to stop reading now. This article isn’t for you because it wouldn’t do any good and would be a colossal waste of your time. This article alone won’t do what parental upbringing, an education, a basic understanding of human dignity, or any semblance of common sense have all failed to do.  

“But I’m not the problem, why is this anti-hazing message targeted to me? I already know that hazing is wrong.” You’re right. But living a life dedicated to honor means not only holding yourself to a high standard but also refusing to accept anything less from your brothers. It means having a willingness to put the best interests of the group before your own, not just choosing what is right over what is wrong but actively combatting what is wrong. It means taking the fight to that which seeks to erode the spiritual welfare of our great Fraternity. 

President Lincoln knew this all too well, and said as much when he said, "a house divided against itself cannot stand." Lincoln's argument was that slavery was an absolute moral wrong and the ongoing political compromises that had tenuously kept the nation together were only delaying the inevitable. At some point, the moral fibers that had been stretched with every admittance of a slave state to the Union would eventually tear apart. Importantly, Lincoln wasn't speaking to the slave states but the free ones.  

A century later, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. also echoed this sentiment when he wrote his "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." King's letter doesn't target the evildoers of the day, the hooded terrorists bombing churches, or the bigots enforcing Jim Crow policies, but instead those who sat silently while these abuses of human dignity were going on. 

In both cases, Lincoln’s and King’s, the call to action was not to reform that which was morally empty. The call to action was to those who had talked the talk but not walked the walk.  

And both moments carry commonalities with today’s struggle against hazing. At its core, hazing seeks to subjugate one individual to the power of another. It seeks to degrade one to falsely create a hierarchy for another to sit upon. It is white-washed in excuses and twisted rationalizations, but let us not mince words when speaking of our foe: hazing is an abject moral wrong. 

Brothers, I understand that you are not the problem. I understand that you are cognizant that hazing is wrong. But I call upon you now to get off the bench and get into the game. I call upon you to not just choose right over wrong but to begin seeking out and extinguishing the fundamental evil of hazing that still plagues fraternities and sororities. Confront it and do battle with it when you see it. 

If we, real men of honor, do not act today then we will have abandoned our dear Fraternity to those few who will drive us into extinction. I refuse to accept defeat from a traitor Knight. 

© 2015-2022 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: (540) 463-1869 | Fax: (540) 463-1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

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