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Prairie View responds to campus hazing

By Amanda Leon
On September 19, 2012

Last week President George C. Wright of Prairie View A&M University issued a memorandum announcing the suspension of the percussion section of the university's The Marching Storm band as a result of findings during a hazing investigation.
According to the PVAMU Student Handbook, the university defines hazing as "prohibited acts committed for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a group or organization."
Sophomore accounting major Sonia Scott said, "There are ways to involve someone in any organization outside of using abusive methods. A person's belief system and health should be taken into consideration."
Generally, one thinks of Greek Life when hazing is mentioned, however, bands at HBCUs across the nation that are currently receiving a lot of attention for hazing.
For instance, last November, Robert Champion, a drum major for Florida A&M University's The Marching 100 band, was brutally beaten as part of a hazing ritual; he later died from the injuries he sustained.
Thirteen individuals were charged as a result of Champion's death.
Eleven of the 13 were charged with hazing resulting in death, which is a third degree felony. Two others were charged with two counts of misdemeanor hazing. They are currently awaiting trial.
Senior health major Mahalia Smith said, "Hazing is seen as a traditional right of passage, but not all traditions are healthy, especially when they stir up so much turmoil, turn hearts to stone, and even begin to take lives."
At North Carolina Central University, the Marching Sound Machine Band has been suspended for the entire year as a result of hazing within the band. No police report has been made and the university has yet to reveal the nature of the crime committed.
Junior mass communication major LaPoshe' Galloway said, "Hazing is a tradition and I'm not against it. However, some things are just unnecessary. I believe that the sororities, fraternities, and other organizations often forget about the meaning of a brotherhood or sisterhood."

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