The University of Nebraska-Lincoln police department has launched an investigation after questions of “hazing” surfaced regarding the university sanctioned Innocents Society — a historically rich fraternity of sorts. I put hazing in quotes because the university adamantly affirms that the group doesn’t practice hazing, even though they definitely do.
My inside source, a current student at UNL, tells me the campus is buzzing about this situation. I’m not going to sit here and say this mess and police investigation is solely because of me, but this mess and police investigation is 100% because of me. Two weeks ago, after receiving an informative email from a UNL student and former Innocents member, I brought the university’s hypocrisy regarding hazing to the forefront, as well as shared a video of the actual hazing in question.
While standing blindfolded in a circle surrounded by Innocents, new initiates are subjected to a public spearing by an active member after the others miss intentionally to intimidate them. It’s not a big deal, really, but it is hazing, by definition. And this matters because the university, like all of them, does not condone hazing among campus organizations.
The ritual looks like this:
From the Daily Nebraskan:
University police are investigating the Innocents Society for alleged hazing, Sgt. Doug Peterson confirmed Monday afternoon.
Allegations of hazing within the chancellor’s senior honorary surfaced last Monday after a Daily Nebraskan article detailed alumni’s concerns about the decades-old tradition of tackling new members. Days before, a video allegedly depicting the practice was published on popular blog Total Frat Move.
Harvey Perlman, the university Chancellor, maintains that this ritual is not to be considered hazing because the new initiates willingly signed up for it and were made aware of the tackling ritual beforehand. He also feebly makes the parallel of tackling initiates with the tackling done in university football practices.
“I do not believe the tackling by Innocents intentionally or recklessly endangers anyone,” Perlman said. “That is not to say injury can’t happen. Requiring the freshmen of a fraternity to play the actives in a game of flag football can produce injury but would not, I think, be hazing under the definition.” […]
Perlman had alluded to football in the previous email, asking, “If tackling by innocents as a condition of membership is prohibited, then what about (the) tackling drill to make the football team?”
As I did in my previous piece, I have to bring up the precedent set by making these arguments in support of the tackling. According to the University of Nebraska Chancellor, as long as the new initiate (pledge) is made aware of the physical abuse he or she is to be subjected to before agreeing to become a member, or if said physical abuse can be paralleled with a common act occurring in sports, then it’s all good. Then it’s not hazing.
“Alright, pledges. Line up. Remember how we made you sign that new member agreement before you began pledgeship? Well, there was a section about a ritual that we practice. It’s not hazing or anything, but we are going to run you so much that many of you will vomit, and you’re going to tackle yourselves to the ground. A lot. It will hurt. You know, just like the football team does it. Time to pay the piper.”
Come on, Chance. That’s just ridiculous..
[via Daily Nebraskan]
Image via YouTube