On Thursday night, the presidents of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) and Alpha Sigma issued a joint apology before the Greek Showcase event addressing racially insensitive behavior involving some of their members.
“It came to our attention earlier today that last night members of our organizations were observed behaving in a way that was viewed as racially inappropriate,” said Alpha Sigma President Kirsten Bank.
“Please note this does not represent our chapters, our values or the Greek community,” said TKE President Logan Docherty. “We apologize.”
Although the formal apology was issued, many members of the Greek community are still upset about the situation.
“Obviously I was not there for the incident, I wasn’t an actual witness to what happened, but quite frankly it’s really upsetting,” said President Marco Marquez of Lambda Alpha Upsilon Fraternity, Inc. “We are a university that loves to say that we’re very diverse and inclusive, and we’re also a Greek community that loves to say that we have Greek unity.”
Although the actual comments made by these members are not public, many people are hurt by the fact that it happened.
The aftermath of the apology has left students, primarily members of the Greek community, angered and hurt.
“I know the apology was made, but that apology did not seem sincere,” Marquez said. “It felt as though it was forced, it felt as if they were getting something checked off a list. And to see that the members who made those comments were still able to perform and also qualify to win the funds [for Greek Week] is ridiculous.”
The comments, along with the apology, have left some feeling isolated and unwelcomed at the university overall.
“In my opinion, the apology that was given does not adequately excuse the actions of those individuals. As a community that preaches the essence of unity, the statements that were made are in direct contradiction of that said unity,” said Lambda Alpha Chapter President Madisen Polk of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. “To many this seems like a one off issue, but as a woman of color I experience these mircoaggressions on a daily basis. Demeaning and ignorant comments like those made perpetuate the horrible stereotypes and reputation of Greek Life and discourage students of color from staying at the university.”
As of now, neither organization has been reprimanded or corrected.
“I hope that all of the Greek community will hold those individuals accountable as a way of practicing the unity we should have amongst each other,” Polk said.