Phi Delta Theta
First off, as an alumnus of the University of La Verne and a founding member of Phi Delta Theta, I am extremely disappointed in the fraternity for the actions committed following the preference dinner [“Fraternity suspended until Fall ’03,” April 5]. It was against the rules and it frankly just wasn’t smart.
However, the punishment should fit the crime. The punishment for such actions is a $500 fine. I would also understand if the fraternity was banned from taking part in interfraternity activities such as Greek Week was when I was at La Verne or other social events and exchanges with other fraternities and sororities for the rest of the semester. But to have Phi Delta Theta give up their right to assemble and the right to free expression by wearing their letters is on the limits of unconstitutional.
What the Greek Review Board has done has handed down a virtual death sentence to Phi Delta Theta, an organization that gave me direction in college and which taught me valuable leadership, organizational and social skills that I use today as a productive citizen. As I said before, the actions of the fraternity are inexcusable but I would hope the Board or President Morgan would reconsider another way to deal with this issue.
Vince Wetzel (’96)
This letter is in response to the Greek Review Board’s punishment of Phi Delta Theta. As a founding member of Phi Delta Theta I am very disappointed by the conduct of my brothers and understand sanctions are warranted, however those given are excessive. For what could be called a first time offense, an otherwise good organization is going to be destroyed. Greeks and other groups in the past have had trouble, but were usually given several opportunities to reform. In four years at ULV I saw the University’s reactions to kidnappings, embezzlement, strippers, and brawls at bowling alleys. All of them less harsh than what face our chapter.
Finally, I find it shocking that ULV would even allow punishments that take away fundamental American rights. Not allowing individuals to wear their letters is a violation of an individual’s freedom of expression. Not allowing a group to meet is a denial of an individual’s right to assemble.
In the end I predict Steve Morgan will hear the appeal and uphold the decision. A reversal would cast doubt on the ability of his staff to be fair and impartial judges, and that image cannot be allowed. Hopefully, a suitable compromise can be reached that sanctions Phi Delta Theta, while allowing them to learn and grow from this experience.
Scott MacKay (’97)
As an alumnus of ULV, a brother of Sigma Tau Xi and a founding father of Phi Delta Theta, I am ashamed and disappointed in the fraternity for what has taken place. What they have done violates IFC rush rules and goes against all of the ideals of the fraternity. I also understand that there was an attempted cover-up by some of the brothers. Brothers in this fraternity must hold themselves to higher standards.
I am also shocked at the punishment that the Greek Review Board has imposed. I believe that the punishment should be more fitting to the crime. IFC set up rules and fines for such offenses and the fine for this is $500. A fine of this amount alone is a great blow to the financial resources of this chapter and would be to any Greek organization. I could also understand if punishments were dealt to the current members such as a ban from Greek Week or socials for the remainder of the school year. But for the Board to ban the brothers from recruitments, assembling and wearing their letters for over a year is not only a death sentence to the organization, but borders on being unconstitutional. I attended the University when one fraternity was caught kidnapping pledges from another fraternity, a criminal offense. The La Verne Police Department was involved and charges were pressed, as I recall. The fraternity involved in this criminal offense received a penalty far less than this from the University.
As I stated before, I do not condone the actions of the brothers involved but I do hope that President Morgan and the Board of Trustees would reconsider another way to deal with this unfortunate situation.
Matthew E. Hawkesworth (’95)
As an alumnus of the University of La Verne and Phi Delta Theta, I am extremely disturbed and disappointed in the actions my fellow brothers engaged in following the preference dinner. Their actions were wrong and an embarrassment to what I believe Phi Delta Theta stands for.
However, I also believe that the punishment meted out by the University was unduly harsh. To suspend the chapter for an entire year would threaten the existence of an organization that has been actively involved in the community, University alumni events and organizations, and provided countless benefits to many of us who have formed lasting and close friendships with those who we now consider brothers.
Lastly, I completely agree with the Greek Review Board’s decision to impose a $500 fine, as is required by the IFC Constitution; however, I disagree with the University’s decision to layer a one year suspension on top of that fine. I strongly urge the Greek Review Board to reconsider what is effectively a “death sentence” for an organization that has done so much to enrich the lives of everyone that has been involved with it.
Anthony Velebil (’97)
Women and Men
I was deeply disturbed by Amanda Stutevoss’ column in the April 12 issue of the Campus Times [“Intimidation by men is problematic”]. A major theme which ran through the article appeared to be that there is a race of human beings called men who are oppressing another race of human beings called women. I found this presumption disturbing for two reasons. First, this is the kind of faulty generalizing that promotes acts of injustice and hatred. Second, it is coming from an individual who quite soon will graduate and represent to society at large the quality of our academic program and the beliefs this University is founded on.
The ULV Mission Statement emphasizes a values orientation which encourages students to become critical thinkers and to work within a community of diversity. It does not promote conformist labeling of members of a particular classification as evil or substandard. Such stereotyping is not only offensive, it is perilous. If we continue to label groups of people based on the actions of individuals within that group, we will continue to be blind to our common humanity and need for interdependent cooperation and respect.
Associate Professor of Education
After giving it much thought, I decided to write in response to a Letter to the Editor written last week by Todd Farrell [April 12]. I hesitated responding since I doubt Mr. Farrell is worth my opinion, but I felt that a voice of reason was quite necessary in order to shed light in Mr. Farrell’s obviously dark and close-minded world and to other men who share his sentiments. Unlike Mr. Farrell, however, I can do this without insulting anyone and by using proper spelling.
Women’s history should be celebrated daily. It was a shame that the University of La Verne did not properly recognize the month by holding events or inviting speakers, and I applaud the Campus Times for attempting to get someone’s attention so it can be better organized next year [“What Women’s History Month?” March 22]. When I read Mr. Farrell’s letter, it ignited the same pity in me that ignorant opinions often do. Although I do not know this boy, I must say that his opinion that women and men “will never be equal” makes me feel a little better since I hope that women strive to be better than men like him are. After reading his letter, I smiled to myself and thought in terms of equality, his ranting and raving have nothing on women like me. He should crave such equality.
As for Mr. Farrell’s opinion of how today’s women are living in the past and have had nothing to do with the gender struggles of history, I wonder what type of world he is living in-fantasy, utopian or both? Equal pay remains a concern as well as equal rights. I pity you Mr. Farrell because you used an argument that offends minorities such as myself. Just because something happens in the past, does not take away its relevance. If, as a woman, I should forget what my ancestors have struggled for, you may as well tell an African American that slavery is irrelevant since no one in today’s society ever owned a slave. Wake up, Mr. Farrell, you need to pay attention.
I must admit that I agree with one point Mr. Farrell made: the fact that men like him “owe women nothing”-my dear, ignorant boy, until you grow up, we want nothing from your kind. Women want a respect that works mutually. We want acknowledgment for the achievements and wonders we have created and evolved from throughout history. As for the suggestion that men get a history month of their own, someone should tell Mr. Farrell that men get such recognition daily.
I suggest you open your mind Mr. Farrell because women like me do not go away and there are plenty of us around. I hope that someday one of us is your boss, however, maybe by then you will be a grown man who will look back and hope that no one ever reads that ignorant letter you wrote to your college newspaper when you were the foolish boy you currently are. I wish you a speedy evolution.
A major goal of the librarians here at ULV is to help students become information literate upon their graduation. We are underfunded for library materials compared to many of the institutions with whom we compete for students, and always appreciate support for additional funding that we can allocate to purchasing books, videotapes, and periodical subscriptions. However, it would have been useful for you to check the facts of your editorial with the University librarian or one of the other librarians before you published an editorial filled with incorrect assertions [“Underfunded library in need of aid,” April 5].
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