North Carolina State University is the latest addition to a wave of fraternity misconduct that has surfaced nationwide in recent weeks. Another Greek group is in trouble for discriminating remarks, but this time the frat was caught in its own writing. Pi Kappa Phi has suspended its N.C. State chapter after a fraternity pledge book was found filled with racist and sexist comments written by potential members.
According to CBS affiliate WRAL, N.C. State senior Katie Perry found the book in a restaurant near campus. She told WRAL:
This is just a group of 60-something young men at State making jokes about raping people, raping children, raping dead women, making very overt racist comments. ... I hope other fraternities are disgusted. I hope that if they do have this sort of thing going on in theirs, that they'll realize, whether they want to or not, that they should change, that they shouldn't promote this kind of behavior.
WRAL posted online screenshots of pages from the book, in which pledges kept notes and disclosed secrets during a weeks-long initiation. Lines included references to lynching and showed members condoning acts of sexual assaults. One member writes, "Dude, if she's hot enough, she doesn't even need a pulse."
In a statement, Pi Kappa Phi CEO Mark E. Timmes said the fraternity was working closely with the university and has instructed its North Carolina members to cooperate with officials during their investigation.
The quotes in the book are reprehensible and unacceptable. We have sent staff to Raleigh to investigate the circumstances of the situation. These statements are inconsistent with the values of Pi Kappa Phi and will not be tolerated.
Pi Kappa Phi disbanded its California State University, Northridge, chapter last year after a student died during an alleged hazing ritual that forced pledges to hike barefoot through the Angeles National Forest with little water. Until this year, N.C. State did not appear to have a history of fraternity misconduct. Another frat on campus, Alpha Tau Omega, was suspended for sexual assault and drug paraphernalia allegations earlier this month.
Fraternities have been dominating headlines this month — most notably, the racist video that came out of the University of Oklahoma's Sigma Alpha Epsilon — and the stories might start to sound like the same old tired song. But every incident is just more proof of how prevalent these misogynistic and discriminating views are in Greek life. Can we all agree that the Oklahoma viral video, the Penn State Facebook page, the University of Maryland email, and now the N.C. State pledge book aren't just isolated incidents? These are deep-rooted institutionalized problems that may never be fixed.