In general, I think the TU salivates over bad publicity for UA (such as kegs 'n' eggs, which naturally they couldn't resist referencing), but in this case, the two questions they ask in this editorial have been on my mind as well:
What would compel any student to physically abuse and otherwise degrade his or her classmates? And why would anyone submit himself to such mistreatment and humiliation?
One of the nine dumb asses from this fake fraternity charged with a crime is in one of my classes. He asked to get into class after it was closed, and I let him in. But of
course! He's personable, confident and participatory, although his
attendance has been lacking, and he constantly emails or tells me at the
next class that he has been sick. Even before this outrageous incident,
I had to bite my tongue to resist saying, "yes, I know. It's called a
hangover." He is prohibited from coming to campus or having any contact with me pending a hearing. The university does not usually get involved in off-campus crime, but hazing is a specific violation.
These are not kids, despite the stunning immaturity and seriously bad judgment. We cut 20-somethings far too much slack, we make far too many excuses, and we extend childhood for far too long. These are men! Pathetic men, yes, but men just the same.
What's most alarming to me is not really the astonishingly sick behavior of the nine perpetrators, shocking and appalling as that may be. There are surely a-holes in this world of all ages, and I run across them from time to time. But the fake pledges, those 18-year-old victims. Are they so desperate for acceptance, so lacking in confidence that they were willing to submit to this? Did they not have the common sense to know it was dangerous, that they might even be hurt or killed? What is wrong with them? And if they are so weak, why are they not still at home in their childhood bedrooms, watched over by helicopter parents?
Unfortunately, if experience is any guide, I have a feeling that the parents of the nine losers will vigorously defend their precious babies, claim innocence, extenuating circumstances, or police brutality and try to save them from taking any responsibility for their actions.
One consolation, I would be even more outraged if this idiot was in my other class. In that one I spend a lot of time on moral education, ethics, honesty and character.