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LETTER: Alpha Chi took it a pie too far

By Matt Williams
On February 11, 2014

To the editor:

As part of the Lyre fest on Feb. 6, 2014, the Alpha Chi Omega sorority were on campus selling food to raise money for domestic violence awareness. This is a great thing for a group of young women to be doing. Domestic violence is a scourge to our modern society, with the majority of victims going unreported.

The problem I have with their fundraiser is the option to throw a pie in the face of one of the young women for a dollar. This is an act of physical violence, which happened repeatedly in the 20 minutes that I observed the proceedings. I asked the ladies why they would subject themselves to this, they said it was in good fun and it helped to raise money for their cause.

Allow me to give you some quick facts about domestic violence.

Women between the ages of 20-24 years of age are at the greatest risk of non-fatal intimate violence. 85 percent of domestic violence victims are women. One in four women will experience domestic violence at some point in their lifetime.

The people who were pelting the ladies with pie were calling the ladies by name. Knowing that it caused physical discomfort based on the responses the ladies were giving to having just had dairy spread all over their faces, up their noses, and in their hair. I asked they guys that were paying to perform the acts of “violence” why they enjoyed doing it. “It’s fun, it’s what we do,” was a response I received from one of the men.

Being a certified police officer in the state of Oklahoma, having worked several domestic violence cases; these types of activities are not OK. They are a precursor to behaviors that lead to actual domestic violence. Why give the message it is OK to physically put hands on another person to raise money for any cause? Would the message not be better spread, teaching people about domestic violence instead of creating an opportunity to practice it?

I think the organizers of this event were in poor taste in this instance; there are too many correlations between the activities they are trying to raise awareness for and what is involved in the actual activity.

– Matt Williams

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