One bad apple does not ruin whole bunch, says Potsdam man
Wednesday, January 29, 2014 - 6:58 am

To the Editor:

I have been following with great interest the fallout of the hazing allegations against a local fraternity at SUNY Canton (ZAP). I feel it is time to speak up for the positive side of Greek Life.

While at University I was a member of Sigma Chi, one of the largest and most generous fraternities in the world, my wife was a member of Chi Omega. We met through our interactions with the Greek system.

While in school my brothers encouraged traits in me that developed me as a human being, we worked on philanthropic projects, provided study hours, were leaders on campus inside and out of Greek life. We could be counted on to assist with moving in day, parent’s weekend, cleanups, etc.

To this day my wife and I are both involved in our national philanthropies, give back to the communities in which we live and strive to uphold the ideals that these organizations expected us to live up to.

Being Greek doesn’t mean humiliating another human just to make yourself feel better, it means building your brotherhood and sisterhood through common interests, goals, caring and working together. I have made friends not only in my house, but with brothers around the country and in fact the world. My wife has experienced the same thing.

I urge you to not judge all Greeks by the asininity of these few. Successful houses are those that are governed by a national body, have national charters to uphold and someone beyond their 4 walls and local university to answer to. I know many fine individuals who pledged “local” houses and did not have the same positive experiences that both my wife and I had.

Greek life is not what is pictured in “Animal House” and is certainly not how these young men portrayed it to be with their actions. Given the right house you can have a life changing experience for the better.

Matt Thompson

Potsdam