Each suspended member of the University of Oklahoma’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity will get the chance to defend himself to a board organized by SAE’s national headquarters in the wake of a video purportedly showing members of the University of Oklahoma’s chapter singing a racist chant.
“Our leadership has identified a special trial commission composed of impartial alumni who will hear each brother’s case,” SAE headquarters said in a statement today. “The commissioners will recommend to the board of directors one of several penalties, which include retaining the current suspension until their graduation or expulsion from the fraternity. The board will then vote on the commission’s recommendations.”
Members can also appeal the board’s sanctions, according to the statement. These hearings would be unrelated to expulsions, suspensions or other punishment from the university.
According to SAE, based on data from the past two years, approximately 20 percent of SAE members nationally self-identify as a minority or non-Caucasian.
The racist video, which surfaced last weekend, was posted to Twitter by Unheard, which describes itself as “an alliance of black students organized for change within campus administration and atmosphere.”
The video shows young men on a bus chanting, “There will never be a n***** at SAE.”
The Unheard tweet, directed at OU president David Boren, said, “Racism is alive at The University of Oklahoma.”
SAE national headquarters immediately shut down the chapter. The University of Oklahoma also severed all ties to the chapter and ordered its members to vacate the fraternity house. Two students were expelled from the university.
SOURCE: ABC News – Emily Shapiro