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Why I Hate Greek Life But Can’t Wait to Rush at Temple University

Why I Hate Greek Life But Can’t Wait to Rush at Temple University

Anyone who knows me–for either years or a few seconds—knows that I hate Greek Life and frats. No, I despise frats. Nay, I loathe frats with every fibre of my being. Yes, that feels like the right amount of descriptive hatred. I even used the British spelling, so you know I’m being serious.

The Greek Life perspective…

In my experience, Greek life is a polarizing topic. You either love it or hate it, and I have clearly chosen my side. Growing up, fraternities and sororities have been associated with destructive drinking, hazardous hazing, abhorrent attitudes, and unparalleled privilege. We all know the classic tropes of men and women in Greek life—arrogant, air-headed, and rude AF to say the least. Sexual assault is more than expected; it seems to be a given. I mean, there are frats whose namesakes’ are “the rape frat.” You know what’s even scarier? The rape frats’ real names are rarely spoken. Here at Temple, I’ve either had or heard of too many instances that fuel the fire of my fury at frats. (Excessive alliteration also adds to the descriptive hatred.)

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I am not so fond of Greek Life…

Typically, when I go out, I avoid frats like the plague. Unfortunately, my dorm is near not one, but two frats that have proved themselves to be absolutely intolerable. Every week, I see dozens of kids cramming themselves into the designated frat party alley across the street. Every week, I see obnoxiously drunk kids in public on a well-lit busy street. Every week, I see the police not bothering to even slow down to take a moment to investigate the debauchery. Every week, I see inebriated boys gawking at girls as they try to pass by. Once in a while, I hear stories from my fellow black girls who get a special combination of sexism and racism at frats. Most of all, I hear on a semi-regularly basis the loud, vulgar ramblings of a drunken boy whose hate speech I am sure stems from repressed homosexual anger. I live on the ELEVENTH floor of my building. Yet, clear as day, I can hear this boy screaming slurs and other disgusting comments at pedestrians. I feel the annoyance rising in me as I type. Woooooow, I hate frats.

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Yet I can’t wait to rush this fall…

The kicker? My article title is not a lie—I am rushing one in the fall. Despite myself, my hatred, the judgement my best friend refuses to stop dishing out at me, I am rushing Alpha Psi Omega. In my defense, it’s an honors fraternity that accepts all genders and it’s for theater, which is my major. STOP! I can feel you judging me too. I’m a total hypocrite, I know. It’s my right as an American, dammit.

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I talked to a lot of people about Greek Life this past semester…

One of my good friends threw herself straight into her sorority, while one of my other good friends still rejects the idea. One boy told me he always expected to join a frat while another girl told me the one thing she swore never to do was step foot inside of a fraternity or a sorority. Ironically enough, she’s currently serving as the President of Alpha Psi Omega, Temple chapter.

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There are benefits to Greek Life…

There are really a lot of benefits to frats: friends, networking opportunities, charity work, etc. I have met women who feel at home with their sorority sisters and men who mature through their work with their brothers.  I talk a good deal about the negatives, but they are fairly lopsided.

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Why I am rushing Greek Life in the fall…

What truly made me forego my frat-avoidance was the kindness shown to me by upperclassmen in my major. I came into this college with one friend who I am on terrible terms with now, so having people who were complete strangers to me support me along my first year was an incredible gift.

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I didn’t realize the integral part of Greek Life until now…

What I am trying to say is that I didn’t realize the integral part of Greek life: people. People make up social groups—I know, shocking! What happens in any club, organization, or whatever is entirely dependent on who is involved. I forgot that the stigmas surrounding Greek Life cloud the good that can be found in the right ones.

Be the change you want to see in the world…

I also forgot that I can be one of those people who changes the paradigm. If good people don’t invest themselves in things, those things don’t get any better. If there are only terrible people in frats, frats will stay terrible.

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To be clear, I still have some animosity towards typical Greek life.  I will, however, challenge myself to calm my bias and support the hidden gem frats out there. I hope more people do too.

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Featured image source: sororityeverafter.com, 1080.plus