Fraternal bond-A A +A
Slice of Life
Friday, August 17, 2012
THE conspiracy of silence.
Hazing as an initiation is meant to test the loyalty and determination of a neophyte to join fraternities. Passing through the rite means acceptance, protection, and brotherhood.
In 1991, the death of Lenny Villa in the hands of Aquila Legis prompted the drafting of an anti-hazing act. Four years later, Republic Act 8049 or Anti-Hazing Law was passed into law to regulate hazing and other forms of initiation rites in fraternities, sororities and other organizations and provides guidelines, including penalties for those who violate the law.
It includes the issuance of a prior written notice to the school authorities or head of organization seven days before conduct of initiation. If the person subjected to hazing or other forms of initiation rites suffers any physical injury as a result, the officers and members who participated shall be liable and shall suffer to reclusion temporal. If the person dies, the penalty is life imprisonment.
The problem is on the implementation of the law and putting those who are responsible for the violence accountable for their action. To this day, initiation rites continue to result to violence and sometimes, death.
Another freshman law student of San Beda College died from injuries supposedly inflicted during a hazing session. Marc Andrei Marcos succumbed to multiple injuries at the De La Salle University Medical Center (DLSUMC).
Seventeen years after the passage of the Anti- Hazing law, it appears that too little has been done by school administrators and universities to monitor fraternities and ensure protection from violence.
While fraternities ensure connections and networks for those who are raring to provide legal protection and expertise to the public, affirmation to the elite membership through the passage of rites that tests the strength of will and perseverance remains with dire consequences.
Fraternal deaths seems to be a given. It is the conspiracy of silence, which ensures that information are withhold and those who are responsible of the crime escape accountability. It only jolt us for a short period and forgotten until another incident happens.
The public acceptance that there is no other way to brotherhood but through violence and a culture of entitlement remains unquestioned and untouched. By keeping silent, the ground for impunity thrives and takes root. Email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on August 18, 2012.