1. Ribbe

    Ribbe Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2014
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello everyone it has come to my parents attention that there has been hazing in the past at SMC's and of course as parents they are concerned, I was wondering if such cases are isolated or common?
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2014
  2. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    Messages:
    5,541
    Likes Received:
    842
    Since your talking about a Senior Military College you might want to better define what you and your parents deem as hazing.

    Take West Point or any Academy as an example, If they did to students at a civilian college what they do at the Academies, they would be kicked out of school on the spot.

    Senior Military Colleges, while not the Academies, still have a Corps of Cadets and have many of the same customs toward new cadets that would be categorized as hazing in any other school.

    Take my son's school for example, one of the Fraternities lost it's charter this year because they made the Pledges stand outside at attention while reciting the house pledge. At a SMC they call this just a Tuesday morning. In fact the Fraternities are no longer allowed to call the freshmen Pledges, it's viewed as hazing. Just wait til you hear what they call you at a SMC.

    So you need to first define what you see as hazing to get an informed answer.
     
    bookreader likes this.
  3. payitforward

    payitforward Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2013
    Messages:
    485
    Likes Received:
    88
    Have you been there for an overnight yet? Go, and ask the cadets directly what they've experienced.
     
  4. bob80q

    bob80q bob80q Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    it happens but its definitely isolated. Most of the stories you will here are either grossly exaggerated or outright false; as with all things be extremely skeptical of anything you read on social media or hear from others.
     
  5. 18MIDN

    18MIDN Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2014
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    11
    Speaking as a plebe at the Naval Academy, if my upper class did some of the same things to me that have happened to a friend down at the Citadel, UCMJ charges would most likely be involved.
     
  6. bob80q

    bob80q bob80q Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    and of course there isn't the slightest chance he may be exaggerating or making it up. See my previous comment.
     
  7. Spud

    Spud BGO

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2011
    Messages:
    528
    Likes Received:
    460
    There is a difference between "hazing" and "military stress and pressure" in a training environment. Hazing is what is found in civilian colleges, frat houses, and some undisciplined sports teams. It is usually characterized by personal humiliation, juvenile pranks involving drinking and attempts to make people vomit, bizarre dress and demands to humble yourself before supposed superiors, and many times dangerous stunts to prove a person's worthiness to be in the organization.

    Military stress and pressure is a TRAINING EXERCISE that is conducted over the first year at a SMC or service academy administered by designated upper classman who have been trained in their role as "experiencial" instructors. They usually have to be highly qualified in both military and academics to be picked for the role. The stress and pressure is put on by physical discipline and a lot of yelling. Freshmen are required to memorize brainless poems, facts, changing status of everything from town movies to meals, research military facts and history, all under impossible time pressures. When the underclassman cannot meet the performance required and fails miserably, more physical stress and pressure is added and the process goes on (seemingly forever to the hapless underclassman). These are just a few of the training techniques experienced and there are countless more.

    However, every step, every demand, every physical discipline has a motive behind it and drives the development of good officer habits into the underclassman and is designed to give them a taste of how they must function in the chaos of combat. It also has a side effect of weeding out those who cannot function in that kind of environment and creates a incredibly strong bond and sense of teamwork within a class that goes through it. I think you can see that this is NOT anything close to college hazing. It is not comfortable by a long shot but it is not hazing.

    If you really want your parents to know what the SMC and service academy first year experience does and how it works, I would highly recommend a book "Becoming a Leader the Annapolis Way" by Johnson and Harper. It examines the Plebe Year and its conduct in detail. I think the title is kind of hokey but the content is excellent and applies to the all the service academies and the better SMCs.
     
    nohelicopterparent and wisbang35 like this.
  8. Danimal223

    Danimal223 AROTC c/o 2019 hopeful

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2014
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    15
  9. glen

    glen Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2010
    Messages:
    174
    Likes Received:
    70
    haszing

    Offensive physical and verbal abuse at any of these institutions happens. It is both against college/academy regulations and can be criminal per state/federal law. As has been noted, much of the stories are just that "stories," by individuals looking for an excuse to color their decision to leave. Don't have any info on current state of SMCs, but I could probably Google any 24 hour period and find a dozen stories of "hazing" at high schools, college frats, police and fire academies, and military service organizations. Odds are that among thousands of Cadets at a military college some will be stupid and do stupid things. But same will happen at the State U. Regards
     
  10. USMAROTCFamily

    USMAROTCFamily Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Messages:
    630
    Likes Received:
    172
    I've often pondered that if this is such effective "training" to develop great officers, why is it not really a practice in ROTC units in most colleges? There are many great officers out there that did not go through this. I would argue that this is really just a continuance of a tradition and could be debated in its effectiveness. I liken this to some parents believe spanking is the only way to effectively parent and insure and think that children who were never spanked would be undisciplined, spoiled children. (And no, I don't want to debate the merits of spanking on this forum). My opinion comes from a former officer who went through ROTC, who is married to someone who went through USMA. Personally, I would definitely call some of the things he went through as hazing, although he would take the stance stated above and does not consider it to be hazing. It is definitely a perception, based upon your own personal experiences.
     
  11. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2011
    Messages:
    1,063
    Likes Received:
    379
    Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
    Captain Renault: I'm shocked... shocked to find that gambling is going on in there.
     
    Cadet2019 likes this.
  12. bob80q

    bob80q bob80q Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    0
    and of course the media is entirely fair and accurate with their stories, the P&C has been notorious for regularly printing sensationalized and exaggerated stories about hazing, some of which were later proven to be less than true. All military schools and fraternities have their bad apples who take things to excess and have a lack of common sense; so does it happen, yes but we are referring to a handful of incidents out of thousands of freshmen who attended El Cid in recent years. Thankfully there have not been any incidents of sexual assault as has occurred at AFA, USNA, USMA and VMI.
     
  13. trackandfield08

    trackandfield08 USCGA 2014

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2008
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    84
    That you are aware of anyway, nice use of a statement to detract from the attention on the Citadel in this topic. I agree with you that each SA or SMC has had its issues with hazing and with a few bad apples who go overboard. I would like to believe that most of the time when it happens, its because they are inexperienced leaders who are learning at the same time the freshman they are training are learning. I agree with the previous poster that mentioned the necessity of certain trainings in that when I have tried to explain to my friends who attended civilian universities what the standards were my freshman year, they view it as hazing and don't understand why I would "put up with it." Additionally, I've seen unscripted videos of some SMCs and heard them swearing and attacking freshman on a personal level, and I see that as hazing. Its all about perspective in some cases.

    Unfortunately, the media attention on hazing at these institutions has forced the methods of training to be watered down in some aspects. While the freshman at CGA may still see their swab summer as a challenge in some aspects, older classes look at it as not enough of a challenge. To the OP, understand that all of these institutions have methods in place to monitor the training that takes place as well as methods of dealing with those cases that do involve hazing.
     
  14. zrxkuma

    zrxkuma Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    23
    USMAROTCFamily STATES: "My opinion comes from a former officer who went through ROTC, who is married to someone who went through USMA. Personally, I would definitely call some of the things he went through as hazing, although he would take the stance stated above and does not consider it to be hazing. It is definitely a perception, based upon your own personal experiences. "

    I was initiated as a Chief Petty Officer in the 90's. I saw no purpose to having my uniform cut off of me with a hunting knife, that was over-the-top. However, we have gone too far in the name of PC. The idea that you can no longer point your finger at an individual while yelling at them because it is not how a professional functions, is going too far the other way. When the ship is not mission capable because of an equipment failure or an individual’s error, there will be a finger in the Officer's face while very loud words are being spoken AT them. How they handle that will directly impact their immediate career and the light their division is held. Some people do not handle stress well and have to be taught. Creating a stressful environment and correcting improper response is required when you’re training warriors, because sometimes it’s more than just a RADAR not working, sometimes it’s a warhead coming to your forehead.
     
  15. Jarhead1775

    Jarhead1775 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2012
    Messages:
    147
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm going through the Ratline right now and haven't seen anything all that bad. The worst I've seen is one of my cadre members take a Rat into a room, close the shade and make him do more push-ups than he's technically allowed to do. He deserved it though. I promise it's not that bad at all. Yeah, life sucks here pretty bad but hey, you signed up for it. It'll make a man out of you. Come to an open house and see for yourself, or don't like I did. It might have scared me out of coming. Wish you luck in whatever you decide.

    -A Rat.
     
  16. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,756
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    It's all relative. My swab summer was worse than current swab summers. The stories I've heard from classes from the 1960s or 1980s are worse than what I experienced. I had a member of the class of 1974 lecture me on a Metro ride about how much hard it was when he went through, and how it has affected the quality of new officers (to be fair, he seemed fairly disgruntled... and I was out so it didn't have the desired effect).

    Visiting CGA last year, one of my old cadre told me "LITS, if we did today what we did to you, there would be a Court Martial." Granted, I had it pretty bad (some of that badness was earned).... but that's a fairly telling statement from someone who was there as a cadre, and is now there as a company officer.

    At my first unit I was "counsel" for a prospective Chief, in a Chief's Initiation.... (now they call it something else).... it was just before the real "tone it down" movement came. I won't ruin what it's like, but my nickname was Dirk Diggler and i looked like a pretty cool porn star (clothing on folks.... I remained fulled clothed!). There are photos.... somewhere...

    If there's anything worse than being a young junior officer, acting as counsel, it's being a chief warrant officer at Chief's Initiation (well.... maybe not, but those CWOs really got made fun of).

    Even traditions like "Crossing the Line" have changed.... go to Youtube and look up "Shellbacks" or "Pollywogs" or "crossing the line" or all of the above and watch the crap they did back in the "black and white" days. Yuck.

    Much of what we did will FEEL like hazing to folks who haven't seen it, don't understand it, or choose to be sensitive to it. For the folks who endured it, it's just part of the process, and it's a future story.... :wink:
     
  17. Cluelessparent

    Cluelessparent Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2014
    Messages:
    283
    Likes Received:
    145
    I was hoping no one would signal out any particular school in this thread. But folks had to go there. But before you make a statement like above you better do your research..... No further comment at this point!
     
  18. CoachBart

    CoachBart Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2011
    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    13
    Hazing Message

    Before I write this, dont hate the messenger. The messenger is me ;) One thing you should all teach your cadets is this. While any type of hazing may or may not be done in jest or mabey is meant to be non harmful, a tradition, or a joke, please be informed of this. No matter where the event happens ie on campus or off campus, if an individual reports something to the police that is considered to be an assault, it will be investigated and if probable cause exists you will be arrested. No exception. I know there are supposedly gray areas, but the gray areas become very clear when a police report is written. I am not trying to make any of you mad. I just want to give you an honest answer so you can teach this to your kids so they will make good decisions. Times have indeed changed. My football coach would cuss, yell, and grab you by the facemask, and we loved him. Today if that same thing would get reported by a parent or student he would be arrested for assault or worse. Google hazing incidents and arrests and you will probably say wow, we did that in hs and college and it didn't hurt me, but then look at how many lives get ruined because the hazers get arrested for everything from assault with a deadly weapon to sexual assault. And I say all of this without even touching on the victims side and I don't want to make light of any serious victim assaults that have occured during hazing. So your kid may be involved in hazing and mabey nothing will ever be said or happen because of it, or mabey your kid will be the one who gets made an example of by the justice system and serves a jail sentence. With that said I believe most incidents at Academies and SMC's are harmless like being yelled at or made to do push ups. The person who chooses to cross the line probably has no idea of the trouble he is asking for. A good rule of thumb is this: Keep your hands to yourself ;)
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2014
    payitforward likes this.
  19. BAMA ROTC

    BAMA ROTC Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2014
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    49
    Hazing has nothing to do with training! I have been on both ends of the spectrum. I was hazed as a young Soldier (mid-80s) and I was in a leadership position when the Army took a stand against hazing and harrasment (mid-90s). Stress innoculation can take place without the use of humiliation or abuse.
     
    NavyHoops likes this.
  20. Cluelessparent

    Cluelessparent Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2014
    Messages:
    283
    Likes Received:
    145
    Is knob bracing hazing? Making a knob get the traditional haircut, is it hazing? Can you ell and scream at mama's boy in formation? Where do you draw the line? How far left or right do you over correct? I hear it all is being questioned....

    On a side note I heard it really got bad when cadets were allowed to have their cell phones. One call home to mama, and she is standing at the gates...... I don't believe in hazing as in putting your hands on a cadet but plain military type discipline is being questioned. The military discipline that has made the SMC's what they are is in question and disappearing.

    I realize give an inch take a mile. Risk vs benefit and defining what is hazing--- what ain't hazing. It is a hard call I am sure. So of course the institution is going to err (for lack of a better word) on the extreme politically correct side.

    Where do you draw the line????
     
    nohelicopterparent likes this.

Share This Page