At first glance, college campuses appear to be welcoming places to be an undergraduate student. The lurid atmosphere of the beautiful campuses, the welcoming college town, the small local businesses and all of the friendly faces proudly wearing their colleges’ merchandise while running to and from classes. This is the first image that the admissions offices of each university want their accepted students to see.
Universities promote their institutions as being safe, diverse, and welcoming environments for their students. It seems as if college is a heavenly experience, a true paradise where students can grow, be safe and figure out who they are. This fantasy dream, however, is far from the truth. A disturbingly high number of college students never get this experience. For 20% of all female college students their lives are ruined due to the university they chose to attend. This is the percentage of women that experience sexual assault on college campuses according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC).
When you peel back the admissions-level layer of a college campus you see a much deeper, and much scarier part of the culture that has developed at universities.
Today’s party scene at many colleges revolves around greek life. The parties are generally hosted by fraternities in their houses or like at Denison, small compact apartments that members live in. This, in addition to the consumption of alcohol that occurs at parties, leads to nothing but trouble. This has become a culture problem on college campuses. Fraternity life has become a breeding ground for the objectification of women and the toxic masculinity that so many males expend today. All an eager student who wants to try to fit in with the “frat bros” has to do is go onto the website “Total Frat Move” to see this extreme sexual objectification of women with their weekly “Rush Boobs” posts that show college women topless with fraternity letters written on them. This, in addition to the normalizing of dangerous and excessive drinking habits, leads the followers and fraternity men to think that this kind of behavior is acceptable.
Don’t believe me? Just look on the internet at some current examples of what greek life has been brought to. Fraternities have been caught hanging signs at their house saying “No Means Yes” in regards to consent and one fraternity has even been caught sending out a guide to “Rape Bait.” This kind of behavior is exactly why 20% of college women are sexually assaulted during their undergraduate studies. Numerous studies have shown that Fraternity men are 300% more likely to commit a rape than a non-affiliated male. This behavior is being normalized. This is just what being a “frat bro” is nowadays.
The rape culture that fraternities are embracing is not what greek life was meant to be. Fraternity life is about growing up, and having a group of guys that you can truly call your brothers. I rushed and joined my fraternity for that reason. I am affiliated and because of this mentality I am a part of the problem. By accepting a bid I joined into the culture that Greek Life has established on campus. However, this doesn’t mean that me along with every other guy who joined a fraternity can’t change the culture. The statistics are still there, and rape culture still exists in American colleges. Greek men need to end this immature, dangerous and disgusting lifestyle that they have embraced. The rape culture that has developed on college campuses must end.