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A Line-by-Line Breakdown of Theta Tau’s Apology

Let’s break down the load of horseshit that is Theta Tau’s apology.

Dear Syracuse University Community: 

Dear People Who Hate Us 

First and foremost, every single member of Theta Tau would like to apologize to everyone affected by the racist video that was recorded as a part of our new member process.

That was just the first week—you should’ve seen week two! 

Theta Tau is made up of a diverse group of engineering students from a variety of nationalities, beliefs, and backgrounds, and we strongly believe that racism has no place on a university campus.

Just in the basement of a fraternity full of sexually- and morally-confused 18-22 year olds.   

College is supposed to be about the ideals of the future – a new generation to replace the old one – and it’s with profound embarrassment and disappointment in ourselves that we find our fraternity in this situation. Anyone of color or of any marginalized group who has seen this video has every right to be angry and upset with the despicable contents of that video. 

Or anyone who has morals. 

For those of you who do not know Theta Tau,

Welcome! We’re accepting new members after a recent incident brought our organization shame throughout the Syracuse community, as well as the country at large. 

we are ashamed that this is the first time you’re hearing of us. Our house is not and has never been a place for hate. We have a no tolerance policy for troubling and offensive behavior. We welcome members of all backgrounds. We support the shared community that we all live in with events, fundraisers, and any way that we can.

Including, but not limited to, sketches performed by members of our own fraternity! 

Of course, none of this can possibly excuse the words that came from our fraternity house last month, no matter the context the words were used in. 

However, we do believe that it is important to understand that context. Not to make excuses

But let’s try it out anyway? C’mon, give us a chance! 

for the content of the video, but hopefully to make those who have been hurt by this video understand that Theta Tau is not a hate group in their midst—that we are not a house full of bigots or those willing to tolerate bigotry.

Theta Tau does not include the basement as the square footage of the house, and, therefore, it is excluded from being tolerant of others. 

Hopefully, understanding the circumstances of the video – as well as our initial response – will help ease some of the pain caused by the horrible words that this video contains. 

Each semester our new members are given the opportunity to write and act out a skit,

Watch out Second City, newly-formed “Racismania” is going to give you a run for your money. 

in order to roast the active brothers. This event was never intended to be centered around racism or hate. This year, one of these brothers is a conservative Republican, and the new members roasted him by playing the part of a racist conservative character. It was a satirical sketch

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of an uneducated, racist, homophobic, misogynist, sexist, ableist and intolerant person. The young man playing the part of this character nor the young man being roasted do not hold any of the horrible views espoused as a part of that sketch. We would like to believe that the new members seen in the video laughing at the horrible things being said were not laughing in concurrence with these beliefs, but in fact the opposite—that racism, sexism and homophobia are so wrong that they are laughable. None of the satire was said or done in malice. 


That said, many bright lines were obviously crossed. The language used in this sketch is disgraceful, and it made the active brothers very uncomfortable. Our organization would never demand, or even ask our new members to recite any of this. We spoke to the new members about their actual beliefs shortly after their parody and we all agreed that those words should never be spoken—in our house, or anywhere. 

Alright guys, just this once we’ll say some terrible and irrepressible shit—but just this once, OK? Now go get ’em! 
Engineers join our organization with the intent of entering a diverse group of people, so that we can all grow into better individuals. We are open-minded, scholarly leaders, both in our profession and in the community. We want to let everyone on our campus know that we are truly sorry, and that nothing like this will ever again be tolerated.

Until four years from now when we’re replaced by a totally new group of college kids who have no recollection of this event. 

Not in private, not as part of a joke—not ever. We cannot apologize enough for the pain, sadness and fear that this has caused. Our heart breaks when we see the protests and Hendricks Chapel congregations when we see the pain that our brothers have caused. As the diverse organization that we are, many of us have shared the same emotions regarding the toxic social and political environment in our country. We understand that we have thrown a lot of fuel into an intolerant fire burning throughout our community, and we know that this issue is much larger than just an isolated incident in our basement. 

And, yeah, we’re not really on the “winning” side of this whole intolerant fire burning throughout our community. 

We hear you all, and we also want to take action, to make the world a better, safer, more inclusive place for everyone.

So, we’re gonna stick around and watch this all play out, cool? 

We promise to maintain a dialogue with our peers about bettering our community. It is everyone’s responsibility to help marginalized groups have power and a voice, and we want to create a platform to support doing so. We feel that it is crucial that the dialogue of intolerance at Syracuse does not end here, and we are calling for all other aligning organizations to contact us at so that we may realize change. 

Can’t wait for all the happy emails! 

Sincerely, Tau of Theta Tau

This is going to look bad on my resume, Ass of Ass Holes 


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