Volume 96, Issue 67
Wednesday, January 29, 2003

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Fraternity brothers for life

To the Editor:

I am a proud member of a minority group here at Western called Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity. I felt compelled to write this article after recently speaking with an undergrad from Wilfrid Laurier University. She dates one of my friends who I have known since he was in Grade 9; currently, he is a second-year student here at Western. I have invited him to come out to some fraternity "rush events" so that he can meet the fraternity brothers and see if it's right for him. When I asked her how she would feel if he were to join, she coyly responded, "Oh, he won't be joining; he doesn't buy his friends."

To claim that someone buys friends by joining a club and paying dues is tragically ignorant and prejudicial. I fear that this sentiment is not held exclusively by Laurier girls, but may be more pervasive, and I cringe at the possibility of a Western student sharing the same conviction. Thus, I would like you to consider my views on fraternity life, speaking from personal experience.

The facts are that over 50 per cent of us will end up in a job entirely unrelated to what we study here at Western. Conversely, I am a fraternity man for life. I do not believe in the cliché "ignorance is bliss" so, to the tragically ignorant and prejudiced, I suggest that you learn more about the Greek system and learn a lesson from Confucious: "For one word a man is often deemed wise, and for one word he is often deemed to be foolish. We should be careful indeed, what we say."

My message is that, I work hard, I play hard and I do not tolerate discrimination based on race, ethnicity, creed or affiliations and I expect the same from others. Thanks for listening. By the way, engineers aren't just handy with calculators, some of us write too!

Alex Martin
Chemical Engineering IV

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