I’ll let the politicians and pundits debate whether or not we’re drifting closer to, or further away, from that ideal.
Nonetheless, if America can be judged as an experiment in self-government, then I believe that the American fraternity or sorority can be judged as the same - albeit on a smaller level. Our earliest forms were established by men and women without the permission of the colleges they were attending. Back then, students did not have to submit paperwork to a campus office in order to gain “recognition.” If they felt something was important enough to establish, then they went forward without apologies. Now, it’s fair to say that our earliest groups also didn’t want or expect anything from the colleges. We weren’t looking to compliment the mission of those institutions back then. We wanted to be left alone. We wanted to govern ourselves. That spirit remains, but is being challenged.
To read the rest of this essay, as well as many others, order your copy of Forever Fraternity: Essays to Challenge, Celebrate and Advance the College Fraternity