Greek community unfairly labeled

Dear Editor:

The current (though I'm sure short-lived) hiatus in further sensationalism of the alleged sexual assaults at Delta Chi and Delta Tau Delta in November of 1994 gives just enough time to look at what really lies beyond the dust of hysteria and avoidance. The issues no longer revolve around what "might have happened" on those fall nights, but rather what our responses have been to the alleged incidents and where those reactions will inevitably lead us.

As a student of this university and a leader of the Greek community, I cannot help but find the readiness to accuse entire groups of people of being rapists and the unwillingness to defend the reputations of the unconvicted as nothing less than unacceptable. Exactly when did this campus become a destroyer of legal legitimacy and a vanguard of scapegoat justification? Doesn't that seemingly abrupt transformation from a cautious awareness to what seems to be a paranoid version of the Salem Witch Trials bother anyone else? Realistically, who truly believes that the return of the gentlemen of Delta Chi fraternity will result in mass rape? And who honestly feels that a denial of their return will either "make this University a safer place" or "teach them all a lesson"?

I echo the sentiments of Tyrone Henry's Feb. 10 column ("Delta Chi's reputation smeared by accusation") when I say that the element in all of this that threatens our well-beings the most is not a concern of rape, or a fear of men's organizations, but rather the realization that no one seems to be approaching any of this rationally or without preconceived prejudice. The surrounding community still looks upon these incidents sadly and pathetically as a generation of older, wiser and more fortunate people, on the screens of televisions and in between the sports section and comics pages of safely-removed-from-the-situation newspapers; the campus community, increasingly more and more ready to post flyers and stage a vigil, is outraged with the possibility of the return of a bunch of fraternity boy rapists; women's groups, in a quest for that final acknowledgment of social equality, defeat the cause by assuming the unquestionable victimization of the accusers; even the Greek community continues to accept the stereotypes given to one of their own, without ever voicing dissent or daring to speak above those who tell us not to bring any more negative press upon those of us who are fortunate enough to remain untouched by the media's biased hands.

None of us were there. None of us know. Why do we pretend that we were or that we do? When do we stop assuming the terror that theoretically lurks behind every Greek-letter institution door, and start letting the evidence speak for itself?

Jeannie Patton

Political Science


Former Panhellenic Executive Vice-President (resigned 2/8/95)

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