Opinion | Fraternities’ dangerous, reckless actions reflect poorly on MU, student body as a whole
Published: Thursday, August 23, 2012
Updated: Thursday, August 23, 2012 23:08
At 5:32 a.m. August 19, fire alarms and fireworks sent members of the Oxford Police and Fire Department to the Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Phi Kappa Tau houses. Members of both fraternities face charges involving igniting fireworks illegally, possession of drugs and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The Miami Student editorial board expresses disappointment in the individuals who caused this disturbance. This incident is particularly disconcerting because it occurred before classes began, therefore setting a bad precedent for the Greek community already this year.
The extreme disregard for safety by members of these fraternities is also disturbing. As OPD Sgt. Jon Varley said in the article, officers found members of the fraternity asleep in their beds despite the ringing fire alarm. Had a fire started in the house, it is very possible members of the fraternity could have perished. Miami University and the Oxford community have already experienced the pain of losing students to house fires. The actions of these fraternity members are at best foolish and at worst, their actions could have been deadly.
In light of the penalization of Sigma Chi last spring, fraternities and sororities should be more, not less, careful in their nightly endeavors.
Playboy Magazine recently ranked Miami University as the number nine party school in the nation, and while we all enjoy having a good time, our focus in school should still be on academics. Situations like this not only affect the individuals and fraternities involved, but Greek life as a whole; they also negatively impact the university’s reputation and the student and alumni body as a whole.
We are tired of bad behavior by certain members of the Greek system and we are tired of how it reflects on us.
We understand that not all members of the Greek community misbehave and that many members in fact give a great deal back to the community. But, as we have seen in the past, the actions of a few members can taint the entire system as well as the university.
While the university has punished misbehaving fraternities and sororities, sometimes severely, we believe perhaps a change in university policy may be necessary to prevent more incidents like this from happening. The risk of probation or suspension has not been enough to deter bad behavior by certain fraternity and sorority members. The university could impose stricter punishments on individual members of the Greek community before their behavior gets out of hand. This might be a way to weed out members of the Greek community who are not role models. The university could also reward those fraternities and sororities that are leaders and that are role models.
Students in the Greek community should take greater pride in their position at Miami as role models, particularly for underclassmen looking to join such organizations.
To the members of Phi Kappa Tau and Sigma Alpha Epsilon, as well as the student body: remember how your actions affect the character of the university we all love.