SAE suspension might trigger change in Greek life

Published 11:33 am Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Greek organizations have been a large part of life in our community because they have been active on the Ole Miss campus for more than 100 years.

That’s why when a national organization indefinitely suspends one of its chapters on campus it is major news. The Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at Ole Miss is one of the oldest on campus and word this week of its suspension has rattled some students and alumni.

The national organization cited “the result of health and safety concerns” among its reasons for indefinitely suspending the chapter, releasing all pledges and suspending all active members.

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Being proactive is a good thing, because we have learned in the past year from tragic results at Penn State and LSU that Greek behavior like hazing and widespread alcohol and drug abuse can have dire consequences.

None of the Greek organizations on the Ole Miss campus were founded in the name of hazing and none were founded on the backbone of alcohol and drug misuse. Such behavior cannot be acceptable.

We don’t yet know details regarding the SAE suspension but the national chapter’s “result of health and safety concerns” tells us that the move was warranted.

Greek organizations do considerable good, with many positive stories to tell. But if a culture produces health and safety concerns change is the only option.