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Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by PalmettoStatesport, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. We have been getting a few calls the past two days from some parents of underclassmen football players saying their kids are getting hazed in the locker room. Talked with the coaches and some players yesterday, and they all say nothing is taking place. There was a fight in the locker room, but that was not associated with any hazing. Now my editor is on my ass to turn out a story.
    What would you guys do in this situation?
  2. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    keep looking into it... it probably is happening but will be hard to find and prove.
    don't write a half-assed story based on parents saying so, but believe that is does exist and try to get to the bottom of it.
    It wil not be easy!
  3. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I'd give the whining little pansies a wedgie.

    Seriously, if you got a few calls it's probably happening and of course the coaches and players will deny it. You need to get specifics from the parents/kids -- what is being done? who is doing it? are the coaches involved? purposely looking the other way?

    Then your questions can be more pointed and are not so easy to brush off. Your best bet might be some sympathetic older kid who is not being hazed.

    One way you definitely could crack it open is if a parent/player complains to the principal or some higher ups. Right now, you've got bupkus.

    Frankly, this is one of those stories that you have to weight carefully. Is it worth putting the effort into it? Depends on how serious the charges are and how likely you'll actually be able to print something.
  4. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    Define hazing, compared to high school kids simply pranking each other.

    Find out who's being "hazed" and if it's a dangerous situation, or if it's a mama's boy whining about having Ben-Gay in his jockstrap.

    Someone will talk.
  5. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    Have the parents called anyone else? Police? Principal? Superintendent? You can report that police or school officials are investigating.....but I'd be very leery of parents who take their beef to the paper instead of to the people who can actually do something about it.
  6. True. True. True.

    Our ME always asks people who come in wanting stories about being hazed or claim to have been assaulted by cops, or other public officials if they filed a police report or made a formal complaint with the appropriate officials.
    Come back when you have and we'll talk.

    Don't fall into the trap of taking parents at their word. As has already been pointed out; cover all your bases.
    Hazing may be happening.
    Or it could be some disgruntled parents trying to other kids or the coaches in trouble with school administrators.
  7. BillyT

    BillyT Active Member

    Ben Gay in a jock strap *is* hazing.

    When you've dealt with a kid who was raped with a broomstick (and one of the kids involved was later a first-round draft choice), you tend to want to stop these things completely.
  8. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    Being raped with a broomstick is criminal.

    Being held down by upperclassmen and having your head shaved, or being shoved naked into the cheerleader practice, or continued peer pressure to chug a pint of vodka so you'll be "cool" is hazing.

    Finding out during stretching period that you have a little dab of Ben-Gay in your jockstrap isn't, unless you're a puss who can't laugh at a little fun or need mommy to come to your rescue.
  9. shit the two years i played high school football, the upperclassmen beat us with pillow cases full of rolled up quarters. hurt like hell at the time, but none of us cried home about it.
    I appreciate all the input, and I am taking a wait and see approach with this for now. As far as we know, nobody has talked to any police officers or administration pertaining to the matter.
  10. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    Being beaten with pillowcases and quarters?

    That would call for intervention. That's assault. One lick on your gourd and you could be a squash instead of a safety.
  11. Bob Slydell

    Bob Slydell Active Member

    Tell the kids to suck it up. As long as they aren't getting broom handle up the poop shoot (like someone at my high school did back in the day, NOT ME) than most of it is just guys goofing on each other. The brromstick is rape, and definitely hazing.

    However, try to get some of the hazed kids to talk or an eyewitness. If there are some real hazing incidents, then it's definitely a story. You are a journalist, you know. Dig man, dig.

    Sometimes, though, hazing is in the eye of the beholder.

    P.S. I don't think ben gay in a jock strap is hazing. One time, after weight lifting a friend was getting ready for a date. So us dateless loser decided to move his truck around the corner and put liquid heat in his underwear. Needless to say, he went commando that night. Good times.

    Now taping a kids butt cheeks together...
  12. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    That's what they all say, Bobby.
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