Interesting article in The Berkshire Eagle about everyone’s favorite underground Williams fraternity — whoops! I mean “literary society” — St. Anthony Hall. The article notes that:

Williams College officials say they have received no response to an offer of amnesty last month to members of an underground fraternity still believed to be active on campus nearly 40 years after the college began eliminating the Greek system locally.

Take the amnesty! Do not underestimate how seriously the College takes the issue of fraternities.

Some students have responded sharply to the acknowledgment of the group’s presence, in weblogs and columns in the Record, urging more aggressive disciplinary action against a group that clearly violates college rules. But Roseman said the overall response to the offer has been muted.

Hooray for Aidan! This is surely a reference to Aidan’s great blogging on the topic as well as to his Record piece. It is too bad that the Eagle failed to name him explicitly.

Roseman said exposing and punishing the members would be a difficult process. “I don’t know where to begin,” she said. “I don’t know any members.”

She added that official pressure “would drive it deeper underground.”

Hmmmm. Perhaps I am giving the College too much credit. Does Roseman really not know where to begin or does she just prefer not to know? Here’s a simple plan:

1) Find one member. This isn’t too hard. I’d wager that Aiden Finley could name a couple and certainly an all-campus e-mail on the topic would produce a student or two. Surely at least a couple of members of St. Anthony Hall have an enemy who wouldn’t mind dropping a dime on them.

2) Scare the heck out of the student that you find. Five or ten years ago, the College did this in a serious way when it felt that some of the athletic teams were getting too fraternity-esque (candle-lit initiation ceremonies and the like). In that case, Williams succeeded in stopping incipient fraternitization in its tracks. Similar tactics would work here. Tell the one or two students that you catch that they have a choice: 1) Be expelled or 2) Name all the other members of the fraternity. I suspect that the cookie would crumble pretty quickly.

Obviously, this is not rocket science. If the College really wants to get rid of St. Anthony Hall it has the way. Time will tell if Williams has the will.

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