Hazing Essay for Law. This essay discusses the issues and concerns that all deal with initiation.

Essay by CujofanHigh School, 11th grade April 2002

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Hazing is a term that many people are familiar with, but not everyone thinks of it in the same way. Hazing can be defined as "any act that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or that destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for the continued membership in a group or organization." The issue of hazing can be controversial at times because some feel that it is nothing more than a way for a group to bond, but others fight against all kinds of hazing because of their belief that hazing is a serious threat to those who have to endure it, especially the youths of the world.

Hazing is most often associated with fraternities, but it is an issue in many different organizations, including sororities, the military, athletic teams, student clubs (such as marching bands), and in high schools.

Those who have never been involved in hazing may wonder why the victim would agree to the often humiliating or dangerous initiation rituals. The most common answer to this question is that they participated because they believed it would give them a sense of belonging, despite the fact that these so-called traditions may harm the participants. Most anti-hazing laws make it clear that it does not matter if a person consented to be subject to hazing because of the pressure they are under at the time and their lack of knowledge about what the process would involve.

One of the most common forms of hazing, especially within fraternities and sororities, is the forced consumption of alcohol, often in lethal doses. One such incident involved Chuck Stevens, who was taken from his dorm in New York State, locked in the trunk of...