A former Dartmouth College fraternity member speaks out about rampant hazing and alcohol abuse at the Ivy League school. But reforming the frat culture might be too much for just one whistleblower:
On January 25th, Andrew Lohse took a major detour from the winning streak he’d been on for most of his life when, breaking with the Dartmouth code of omertà, he detailed some of the choicest bits of his college experience in an op-ed for the student paper The Dartmouth. ‘I was a member of a fraternity that asked pledges, in order to become a brother, to: swim in a kiddie pool of vomit, urine, fecal matter, semen and rotten food products; eat omelets made of vomit; chug cups of vinegar, which in one case caused a pledge to vomit blood; drink beer poured down fellow pledges’ ass cracks… among other abuses,’ he wrote. He accused Dartmouth’s storied Greek system – 17 fraternities, 11 sororities and three coed houses, to which roughly half of the student body belongs – of perpetuating a culture of ‘pervasive hazing, substance abuse and sexual assault,’ as well as an ‘intoxicating nihilism’ that dominates campus social life. ‘One of the things I’ve learned at Dartmouth – one thing that sets a psychological precedent for many Dartmouth men – is that good people can do awful things to one another for absolutely no reason,’ he said. ‘Fraternity life is at the core of the college’s human and cultural dysfunctions.’ Lohse concluded by recommending that Dartmouth overhaul its Greek system, and perhaps get rid of fraternities entirely.