Chapel Hill, NC: Solidarity Attack on Fraternity

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On the night of January 13, we smashed out the front windows of the Chi Psi frat house, 321 Cameron Ave., Chapel Hill, NC. We did this for anyone who has ever been afraid to walk the streets of this town because of harassment for their body, gender, or sexuality. This fraternity was chosen at random. All fraternities are sites of conscious self-organization for patriarchal power and the homophobia that supports it. They exist to convert this power into real capital.

Solidarity with all those imprisoned or facing imprisonment for defending themselves against homophobic or transphobic violence.

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15 Responses to Chapel Hill, NC: Solidarity Attack on Fraternity

  1. Pingback: Chapel Hill: Solidarity Attack on Fraternity « Internationalist Prison Books Collective

  2. anarchistfraternitybrother says:

    Did that Chi Psi chapter do something? You smashed their windows for simply existing? You know, my dad’s a Chi Psi alum and he’s a pretty badass guy. Him and his brothers took over their local ROTC and shut it down in the 70s. Also, my fraternity functioned more like a radical household than any punk house I’ve ever visited and I’m pretty sure the strategy of smashing fraternal organizations’ windows without a clear, direct cause isn’t going to get our movement anywhere. What’s next? The Elks Lodge? The Moose? Knights of Columbus? Rotary Club? In fact, most of the modern day labor unions have their roots in fraternal orders. Read about the Mollie Maguires. Maybe you had a good reason to smash the windows, but I don’t think it’s clear that you knew anything about the house, who lives there, and what their politics are from this post.

  3. TKE Brother says:

    Fuck you. I am a bisexual Fraternity member, third wave feminist, and political activist. I have brothers who are trans, bi, gay, and straight, black, white, hispanic, and other. Who grew up rich and who, like myself, live under the poverty line. We don’t exist for any sense of patriarchy, because that contends our power system subjugates women, when women aren’t in the closed power system to begin with. We exist to help one another. It wasn’t the GSA that supported me when I came out of the closet. It was my brothers. It wasn’t some politically motivated group who came to my assistance when I was attacked for my sexuality. It was my brothers. It wasn’t radical window smashers who rushed me to the E.R. or who helped me get a lawyer to prosecute my attackers, or to help me defend myself in the future. It was my fraternity. As far as any form of homophobia, you marginalize all of us who are queer and Greek. And in that, you are just as bad as any homophobe. You pretend to advocate for people, all your doing is appeasing your own insecurities. And though there are Greeks that are assholes, by no means are they representative of the community as a whole. Just as your futile violence is not representative of political activism as a whole.

    You must read MacKinnon, because you fall in to the same trap of essentialization, and subversion that she does. You deny any agency to those who are being subjugated. What gives you the right to speak or act for “anyone who has ever been afraid to walk the streets of this town because of harassment for their body, gender, or sexuality”? I’ll give you a hint: nothing.

    Your act does not create capital in any form. It breaks down any chance of discourse on the issues at bay. Incidentally, if you think that fraternities are the basis of homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, etc, you are a fucking moron.

    May I reiterate: you suck, are self-righteous idiots. You’d think that people who are marginalized would understand the importance of not generalizing, and marginalizing others.

  4. ... says:

    Smashing the front windows of someone’s home is not the answer to homophobia or patriarchal power. You do not know the members of the Chi Psi fraternity and stigmatizing the entire Greek system makes you just as wrong as anyone that you’re trying to target. The definition of a hate crime is a crime motivated by racial, sexual, or other prejudice, typically one involving violence.
    Your prejudice against fraternity members, and therefore smashing these windows, makes what you did a hate crime, something citizens of this country, especially the gay community, has been working for decades to stop. Not only have presented more fuel for anyone that does continue to harass people for their body, sexuality, etc, but you have taken the very movement that you’re working for two steps back. What you did was irresponsible, immature and cowardly. Homophobia and harassment is intolerable, but hatred and discrimination of ANY kind is equally as wrong. Speak out about what you believe in, educate people on the issues and teach acceptance, but don’t let violence, hatred and prejudices cloud your judgement and derail this movement.

  5. Chi psi says:

    So, you “randomly” chose a fraternity to attack, as punishment for “self-organization for patriarchal power and the homophobia (fraternities) support.” Chi Psi at UNC has in fact had homosexual brothers more than once in its existence, and portrays none of the before mentioned insinuated “harassments”. You baselessly attacked an innocent fraternity, which is an organization based upon the concept of brotherly bonds, for petty misunderstandings, generalizations, and unfounded agression. To return by means of violence, in your whirlwind of sudden passion, you lashed out upon an innocent establishment for no reason more than a metaphorical attempt to seek vengeance for a nonexistent victim base. Please reevaluate your actions, your goals, and the hypocrisy behind your message and consequent action. To say stereotyping done by fraternities is wrong, and then to stereotype fraternities as a singular monstrous entity, is contradictory, unfounded, and ignorant.

  6. Phillip Spencer says:

    Actually Chi Psi is known for being the first fraternity to not discriminate based on religion/lack of religion, race, or sexuality in fact one of their most revered brothers was homosexual and helped defend thousands of lives during the terrorist attacks on 9-11 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Bingham). They could not have picked a worse fraternity to attack to send a message, the values of a Chi Psi are impeccable and the embodiment of a true gentleman.

  7. Ash says:

    Looks like adults are perfectly capable of finding ludicrous reasons to justify their tantrums.

  8. Robert says:

    I absolutely agree with the underlying sentiments of your cause. Combating homophobia, transphobia, racism and sexism is extremely important and, despite some gains over the past 40 years or so, there remains much work to be done.

    But is it possible that what you’ve done in this instance may not have actually advanced your cause? In the future, you may want to think about the considering the following:

    First, consider the individuals who may be affected by your actions, such as the elderly couple living just behind Chi Psi, nearby families with children, and other Chi Psi neighbors who you have frightened and who are now afraid to walk the streets of their own neighborhood. Consider also the six or more queer households within three blocks (just my quick count, there may be more) who might have otherwise stood in solidarity with you and your cause, but who you may have now alienated.

    Second, consider your methods. There are many innovative, creative, effective, peaceful ways to be seen and heard that do not involve violence. As we’ve learned from history, sometimes change requires radical behavior. But hasn’t history also taught us that that kind of behavior should be a last resort? And hasn’t recent history taught us that acts of violence against innocent people to further a political or social point of view (regardless of the legitimacy of the view), is just terrorism, plain and simple?

    Third, is a “random” act of violence appropriate when you consider the risk that you may be targeting the very people who, generally speaking, support your philosophical cause or may be otherwise innocent? You chose to damage a fraternity that, ironically, happens to have been a diversity trailblazer at UNC. It has never discriminated against anyone because of socio-economic status. It has welcomed openly gay members without controversy from as early as 1977, perhaps earlier. It was the first “traditionally white” UNC fraternity to have African-American members and was one of the first (perhaps the very first) to have Asian and Jewish members. And the minority presence at Chi Psi has not been, by any means, insignificant. Furthermore, the Chi Psi sensitivity to these issues extends after UNC graduation: in the ranks of its alumni is a winner of a Pulitzer prize for his biography of Martin Luther King Jr. and the current CEO of Habitat for Humanity.

    I speak from experience. I am an openly gay man who is a Chi Psi alumnus. I also get your cause. I participated in ACT-UP in the nineties and was among those clubbed by policemen on horseback during a demonstration at the 1992 Republican Convention in Houston. Ultimately, I can only speak for myself, but this working-class queer boy from Durham has never felt anything but welcome and respect at Chi Psi, from day one.

    Thank you for thinking about these things.

  9. EWUDchi says:

    Dude seriously, honestly we have gay members in our fraternity and numerous do. Same goes with sororities, we don’t judge them based on their character at least my chapter doesn’t. I’m a Delta Chi, and this pisses me off and I’m sure it pisses many other fraternity members hearing such accusations. Such things may happen in some fraternities I admit but where in society is one safe from such persecution of body, gender, race, and sexuality? The answer to that is nowhere. In our 10 expectations, expectation number 2 which coincide with most fraternities, is

    “I will respect the dignity and worth of all persons. I will not physically, mentally, psychologically or sexually abuse or haze any human being. ”

    That’s our expectations which we are expected to uphold as Delta Chi’s. The IFC (North-American Interfraternity Conference) have a similar expectation that all fraternities must follow.

    “I will respect the dignity of all persons; therefore I will not physically, mentally, psychologically or sexually abuse or harm any human being.”

    Get your facts right and hazing isn’t going to stop hazing.

  10. Bro says:

    Fuck you scum. How dare you target fraternities. For many they are like extended families with brothers from every walk of life you could possibly fathom. If you attack mine I will treat it as an act of aggression on my familyand I will bypass pressing criminal charges and personally beat your ass. You’re the punks

  11. Female UNC Student says:

    I’m not usually one to propose anecdotes against a broadly based viewpoint, but this scenario hits home for me. What’s ironic about this particular attack on the Chi Psi house is that when I was living on Mallette Street and walking home alone in the dark one night, there were a couple of men acting in a way to make me scared to walk down my (poorly lit) street alone. Chi Psi is right at the top of Mallette Street, so I knocked on the door and explained the situation, and without any question or judgment, one of the guys walked me home. You cannot attack a system and assume that your reason for attack is a reflection of all of its parts. Further, attempting to teach a lesson to what you are classifying as a group of violent, aggressive people with a violent, aggressive act, is an act wrought in contradiction.

  12. Pingback: Fraternity Vandals Remain Unknown « Internationalist Prison Books Collective

  13. David Stewart, SPI Brother says:

    This student newspaper article may deserve its own post in the Updates section of this site.

    Fraternity Vandals Remain Unknown (http://www.dailytarheel.com/article/2013/02/fraternity-breaking-and-entering-vandals-remain-unknown)

    Two UNC fraternity houses on Cameron Avenue have been vandalized in the past month — and police don’t know who is behind the incidents.

    On Jan. 14, five windows of the Chi Psi fraternity house at 321 W. Cameron Ave. were broken around 5 a.m., according to a Chapel Hill police report.

    Sgt. Josh Mecimore, spokesman for the Chapel Hill Police Department, said it appeared that rocks were thrown into the fraternity house’s windows.

    On Sunday morning, the front driver’s side window of a vehicle in the parking lot of the Sigma Phi Epsilon house at 207 W. Cameron Ave. was shattered between 1:10 a.m. and 10:31 a.m., according to a Chapel Hill police report.

    Later that afternoon, a rock was thrown into a window at the house after Sigma Phi Epsilon member David Stewart got into a dispute with a group of people in the house’s front yard.

    Mecimore said Stewart reported that a group of about 20 people were yelling at him, and he asked them to leave the premises.

    Mecimore said someone in the group threw a book at Stewart, and someone threw a rock into one of the house’s windows.

    He said witnesses told police the group left the area via Pittsboro Street and headed toward the FedEx Global Education Center.

    The presidents of Sigma Phi Epsilon and Chi Psi declined to comment on the incidents.

    Interfraternity Council President Peter Blumberg also declined to comment on details of the vandalism.

    “Obviously I think that random acts of violence against anyone are bad,” he said.

    “I hate to see this happen to anyone, whether they’re Greek or not.”

    The police have no reason to believe the three incidences were related, Mecimore said.

    He said police have exhausted all leads and are no longer investigating the incidents.

    On Jan. 23, a blog post (http://waronsociety.noblogs.org/?p=5755) was published on the anarchist blog War on Society claiming responsibility for the Jan. 14 vandalism incident.

    The blog said out of UNC’s fraternities, the Chi Psi house was chosen at random to be vandalized.

    “We did this for anyone who has ever been afraid to walk the streets of this town because of harassment for their body, gender or sexuality,” the post said.

    “All fraternities are sites of conscious self-organization for patriarchal power and the homophobia that supports it.”

    Mecimore said the police department deals with a handful of cases each year in which things are thrown into or out of fraternity windows.

    He said most of these cases are pranks.

    “It’s not terribly uncommon for us to have one fraternity damaged by another,” Mecimore said.

    “There’s no indication that that’s the case here, but that’s certainly something we’ve seen in the past.”

  14. disturbed says:

    In your blatant ignorance, you perpetrated the false stereotype that you profess to be battling and took radical action to needlessly increase the level of animosity between the greek community and all those that are “afraid to walk the streets of this town because of harassment for their body, gender, or sexuality” (regardless of how rediculous this fear is- in the years that I have been at Chapel Hill I have not heard of one sexual harassment case involving a fraternity member). Fraternities are organizations based on brotherhood for the purpose of bettering the community. They offer a structured organization to fulfill all the needs of an incoming freshman, from scheduled social interaction to academic support from experienced upperclassmen. I know of numerous fraternities that have homosexual and multiracial members, and although there is an undercurrent of homophobia and male superiority in many fraternities, they are more inspired by exasperation with the persecution they receive from self-entitled idealists than actual feelings of fear. This is perfectly in line with the extremist, “don’t give a fuck” lifestyle that most fraternity members lead. Taking a course of violence will only serve to entrench both groups in their opposing ideals. Consociational measures to help both parties better understand each other will go much further to help the isolated groups of our stratified society feel less hatred towards each other.

  15. Hank says:

    It’s long past the date of your abominable and ill-considered “random” attack on a fraternity, but that classless act still annoys fair-minded people. I know many brothers in Chi Psi, including at least one who is openly gay. You could not have picked a more inappropriate target. Chi Psi is an incubator of Rhodes Scholars, and the members have been traditional leaders on campus and within the community for many years. They have the ability to inspire without resorting to violence. You don’t!

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