A new editorial from Bloomberg View calls for the end of student Greek life, arguing that “the fraternities that dominate so much of collegiate social life are of dubious value.”
This editorial follows a number of strong Bloomberg News investigations into some of the nastier parts of Greek life — including supposedly special treatment for brothers applying to jobs, widespread hazing in the fraternity system, and political lobbying groups aimed at protecting fraternities interests, even against proposed safety measures.
Bloomberg seems to have found even more reasons to get rid of fraternities, citing one study that found that students in fraternities are twice as likely to binge drink as non-affiliated students.
However, one of the most startling statistics in the editorial is from a trend that was tragically confirmed again last month — student deaths from hazing. According to Bloomberg, there has been at least one fraternity hazing death every year for the past 43 years.
While hazing is illegal in the majority of the country, Bloomberg notes, “the existing laws are largely ineffectual or treat hazing as little more than jaywalking.”
The core of their argument, though, seems to be based on a simplified definition of a college’s mission as purely educational and, more specifically, the type of education that is found in the classroom. In this understanding of collegiate life — one that centres around the classroom — “fraternities are at odds with the mission of a college or university.”
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