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Amid growing national concerns about fraternity scandals and investigations into inappropriate, possibly criminal activities on its own campus, North Carolina State University (NCSU) has banned alcohol at all on-campus fraternity events.

The ban applies to over 20 chapters of national fraternities – with the exception of the five fraternities traditionally composed of only black members.

Fred Hartman, a university spokesman, explained that the ban was implemented in coordination with the Interfraternity Council. Black fraternities are governed by the Pan-Hellenic Council.

The crackdown appears to have been the administration’s effort to address separate issues under investigation involving only two fraternities, but the current atmosphere on many college campuses led to the blanket ban against all but the five black fraternities. While there is no evidence that the majority of the fraternities were involved in any wrongdoing, the ban applies to them equally, as well as the two identified in the incidents. Only the black fraternities are excused.

The Pan-Hellenic Council was formed in 1930 at Howard University, a traditionally black school, at a time when fraternities were segregated, to provide black students with the benefits of camaraderie white students found in fraternities and sororities. Its membership is overwhelming black, but all “Greek” organizations are prohibited by law from excluding any race.

The scandal at NCSU involves a fraternity’s pledge book filled with anonymous sexually graphic and offensive, possibly criminal, comments.

After it was discovered, the university took the action of banning alcohol consumption at “Greek” events on the campus, with the notable exceptions.

Several high-profile incidents at universities ranging from a video of University of Oklahoma freshmen “frat brothers” singing a racially offensively song to the posting of nude photographs of unconscious women on another fraternity’s Facebook page at Penn State have focused national attention on the behavior of fraternity brothers.

Allegations of rape and sexual assault taking place at fraternity houses have made the news recently, prompting universities to develop their own internal judicial systems to deal with the claims. Many of the investigations have revealed fabricated allegations by the so-called “victim,” but in most cases, the life of the accused has been irreparably damaged as a result.

Several lawsuits against false claimants and universities are currently pending.

 

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