May 13, 2017 by Chris Kilkus
Bridget Foley’s Diary: Thank You, Wake Forest
Frat boy. Among nonparticipants in Greek campus life, that distinction might conjure comic satire a la “Animal House,” in which good-time guys throw toga parties and food fights. Today, it’s more likely to summon recall of real-life abhorrent behavior rooted in bad judgment and puerile, immature self-interest. Most recently, 18 fraternity members have been indicted in the tragic death in February of a 19-year-old student after he fell several times, and went unaided, following an alcohol-centered rush process. The circumstances of this young’s man death are horrific; the impact on his family, unspeakable. That’s the side of fraternity life about which the general public most often hears.
There’s another side. Until 18 months ago, I was fraternity agnostic, with no significant personal exposure and no strong opinion one way or the other on this particular time-honored approach to male bonding and its less notorious female counterpart. I understood, and continue to understand, calls for the total abolition of fraternities on campuses in light of wholly preventable tragedies. Conversely, I see how frat boys fall into a category with clergy, cops and doctors, the good ones often assumed in concert with the bad.
On Sunday, several members of my family will fly to