If you followed the events leading up to the suspension of the Kappa Alpha Psi chapter at Morgan State University you might remember Brian Stewart. The suspension of the Alpha Iota chapter by Morgan State administration was to demonstrate that all students should be treated equal. The chapter could not participate in any university sponsored events or activities, university officials said.
Stewart, a former White House intern, has since become a trailblazer. “This is a proper course of action, mainly to raise awareness that this happens,” said Stewart about members of the fraternity that rejected to admit him.
Morgan State’s decision to hold members of the Alpha Iota chapter responsible for discriminating against Stewart because of his sexuality was a groundbreaking result that goes down in the history books—there’s no doubt that a homophobic culture exists in the Black fraternities.
The university placed the chapter on probation until 2015, citing violations to “certain university regulations, procedures and policies.”
So guess how many events the Kappas at Morgan State held since the decision to suspend them from all campus activities? Zero, right?
Morgan State could be sending the wrong message to the university community by deliberately allowing things to slide through the cracks. And that is exactly what Stewart says has been happening since the decision.
“I question my president’s sincerity when he said that the University did the right thing and ‘saw an educational moment’ when it placed the Alpha Iota [chapter] of Kappa Alpha Psi on probation until 2015 and barred it from participating in University events or hosting its own,” Stewart wrote in his blog.
“I find that statement false considering that on May 2, 2014, the Alpha Iota chapter hosted an event in the University Ballroom called “Kolor Blind – Understanding One Another. I find it hypocritical considering on February 8, 2014 the Alpha Iota chapter, in collaboration with another campus fraternity held their annual “Pretty Nasty” party; which aided in the moratorium for future events imposed by Vice President of Student Affairs, Kevin Banks as well as raising eyebrows in the Mayor’s Office.”
Stewart is right: “The time is now for more colleges and universities, especially Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to create cultures that encourage and develop persons in the LGBT community throughout their matriculation.”
Morgan State stood by Brian Stewart to take a jab at the homophobia climate within Black Greek Lettered Organizations when it acted to suspend the Alpha Iota chapter for discriminating against a gay student. But it turns out they were not doing anything that differs from the way things are now.
The Vice President of Student Affairs at Morgan State University, Dr. Kevin Banks, responds to student Brian Stewart’s comments, says information published on Stewart’s blog is inaccurate.
“While Mr. Stewart’s blog reports that the University is sending the wrong message, I must disagree with his opinion. In fact, the university has hosted a series of conversations to ensure that we continue to emphasize our values around respect for diversity and inclusion at Morgan State University,” said Banks.