Anti-hazing seminar highlights GSU Sigma week

The Xi chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc., in conjunction with Judicial Affairs, presented an anti-hazing seminar on Monday night in Woodson Hall. Kevin Rhodes, vice president of Phi Beta Sigma, introduced the topic. Hazing is defined as a ritualistic test and a task, which may constitute harassment, abuse or humiliation with requirements to perform random, often meaningless tasks.

GSU has a zero tolerance policy on hazing, and does unconditionally oppose any situation created intentionally or unintentionally to produce mental, physical psychological, or emotional discomfort as well as embarrassment, harassment or ridicule.

Not only is hazing forbidden on campus, it is also against the law in the state of Louisiana. Louisiana Hazing Law R.S. 17:1801 states that whoever violates the provisions of hazing shall be fined not less than $10 nor more than $100, or imprisoned for not less than 10 days nor more than 30 days, or both, and in addition, shall be expelled from the educational institution and not permitted to return during the current session or term in which the violation occurs.

Anitra Ford and Khrishandalyn Hicks, members of Judicial Affairs, provided a visual presentation on hazing. Some forms of hazing are underage/binge drinking and drug use, tattooing, piercing, head shaving, branding, kidnapping, consuming unreasonable foods, and being deprived of personal hygiene.

Other forms include but are not limited to paddling in any form, physical and psychological shocks, kidnapping and quests, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, etc.

Ford and Hicks got the students to interact with a game by giving examples of what some prospective people interested in an organization might have to do. Those who believed the task was hazing stood on one side, and the others who thought it was not hazing stood of the other side of the room.

Some examples included being told to meet for a study group at a specific time, shaving your head or not being able to wear a certain color during the intake process.

After the activity, the two graduate students provided stories of incidents that have occurred with people interested in joining organizations of the Divine Nine. Additional stories may be found on www.stophazing.org.

Following the presentation was a discussion period where students had mixed feelings on their interpretation of hazing. Some felt hazing was OK, as long as it’s discreet. Others felt it should not be allowed in any organization, whether Greek, non-Greek, social or service.

Student Dasha Flournoy was asked about her perspective of hazing.”I am against hazing because God died for our sins and with Grambling being an HBCU with predominantly black students, our ancestors suffered enough and one shouldn’t have to go through any more physical pain,” she said.