I AM the “typical” sorority girl. But if you actually do know me, you would know that I am not so different from any other female student attending Binghamton University. People have unfairly pigeonholed me in the sorority girl stereotype—the same stereotype that holds true for almost any social girl at Binghamton University. The sorority girl stereotype is honestly just an exaggerated stereotype of any girl. Hence, putting a bunch of females together in an organization forcing them to call each other sisters may not be the most terrific idea. Yet, there has to be a reason why fraternities and sororities have been around for as long as the country declared independence from the Brits in ‘76. That reason is that by “signing our lives away” and “paying for our friends,” we are agreeing to be a small part of something bigger, greater, more influential, and more fulfilling than our day-to-day lives. As Fraternity and Sorority members, every cold Binghamton morning, we come to the table with responsibility, pride, confidence, valuable relationships, and wisdom that we have gained from being in our Greek organizations. We are warriors of campus that band together to attack every day as a group and not as a single. And we win. We win at life: at dating, at having fun, at school, and at being super, super chill. So while you ponder if life really is or isn’t greener on the other side, we are living our college experience in the most rewarding and memorable way possible.
This is a response to last week’s feature on why to Avoid a big fat Greek life decision, written by none other than members of Binghamton University’s unrecognized and ill-advised crowd. Hate to use the H word, but Hypocrisy is not very Greek at all. Socrates died for that stuff. So as my Greek haterz began, Rush: Sure there’s a lot of small talk about why sisters or brothers joined an org and how they oh so love it, but let’s face it, everyone small talks. I’m sure the last time you had a conversation with the guy you hooked up with last weekend would be considered small talk, if you even said hi. We all small talk and we definitely use it in the real world to get to know people we don’t know. And not only the people of the org you want to join. In fact, during rush you meet many different people from many chapters increasing your chances of having a friend in class or taking a cab home with someone you know, regardless of what fraternity or sorority they are a part of. While my counterparts claim Greek life limits you, it actually broadens your social horizons to a community.
Dues: I admit, every time I pay dues I’ll pretend as if that money spent never actually left my account and I’m just as broke as I was before. However, being in an on-campus sorority and paying dues that go directly to things like our National Philanthropy and to insurance that protects my sisters and I. I don’t think of dues as a payment, but rather an investment. I am investing in my time, safety, and OD happiness by paying for social events, philanthropy donations, lots of clothes, and all the Nirchis you can eat in one shot. Meanwhile paying for dues I am legitimately bonded to an organization that is known and operating around the country, helping me build connections and opening opportunities for the future. Some of the most powerful people in the world were fraternity and sorority members and they built their personal empires on networking. Brad Pitt was in Sigma Chi and now he has Angelina Jolie, and all you have is the stage 5 clinger that follows you around Venue. So I’d like to say that the grass might not be greener on the Newing Field, if there is any green grass left in Bing, but the Greeks are green for sure.
Social Schedule: Not all Greek orgs are socially severe. For example, my sorority does not adhere to social stringent rules nor do we force people to go anywhere they don’t want to. As winners of life, Greek members absolutely have choice. At the same time, we understand that we are part of something bigger than ourselves and must hold ourselves to a higher caliber than other organizations on campus might. We have a greater responsibility to not “dis” our fellow orgs by being in lame attendance and understand that a party just isn’t fun unless there is a lot of people dancing to Ariana Grande on the frat house dance floor. We have a thing called manners and usually when one makes plans with another they adhere to them because at the end of the day we want to be ladies and gentleman, not college kids eating slimy wings at the grimiest bar alone.
Incestual Hook-up Culture: I see you’ve added the use of incest in there because we are in fact “brothers” and “sisters” and I’d like to say one joke well played, unlike the Athena Portokalos joke that everyone needed Google to reference who the hell the girl was. But incest, great joke! You got us! First off, the hook up culture appears everywhere, not just in college and definitely not just in Greek life so it’s certainly not fair to blame Greek orgs for partaking in this lifestyle. Maybe it appears that way more for people in Greek Life because we’re all really, really, really good looking and it is genuinely hard for us not to makeout with the opposite sex (or the same sex if it’s that kind of night). Still, it is possible to find someone that is in Greek Life and not so stereotypically proactive. The Greek community is very broad with so many people, actually over 600, so if you can’t find someone that your friends have been with before, you might just have the same taste as your friend, which is no big deal. That brings something to mind, who the eff is tryna be tied down right now?! Being locked down is for your upper twenties if anything, have fun and play around while you can. Have you seen your parents? Forget monogamy for the next five years, you’ll thank me later.
Lastly, this is college. We came to meet new people, become better versions of our already bomb selves, and learn cool shit like how Socrates decided to be executed instead of being a little bitch in Ancient Athens. We have four years to do just that and have the most fun we can. Before we know it we will be off in the real world working, paying bills and watching Jimmy Kimmel on late night every night. So wouldn’t you like to think back to the days you took your shirt off for AEPhi’s Greek God or went on the awful date from Phi Sig’s Phinding Love? Or go through the oh so fun six weeks of pledging and at the end of it laugh about how it was the best time you never want to have again? Greek life is about giving you a place on a campus of 13,000 people, giving you a home, not just a dorm room or apartment. It’s about making your college experience as dynamic as possible. So one day when you’re in bed watching Jimmy Kimmel on a Tuesday thinking about your college daze, you can roll over and spoon your girlfriend that your pledge brother introduced you to last year at happy hour. Or you can grab your IPhone 7 and text your pledge brother reminding him just how the two of you killed the college game and fall asleep satisfied with the best college experience ever.
– Katherine Kassover is a junior