Hazing News

Forward from Matt Carrington’s mother: letter from Calif. activist

This unedited letter is from Mrs. Debbie Smith to her supporters. Opinion.

Hi Everyone

We couldn’t have asked for a better result. I think Robert Oakes, Senator Torlakson’s Press Secretary, put it best when he said “We hit a grand slam and two home runs today”. Referring to the unanimous vote of 6 – 0 by the Senate Public Safety Committee Members to send Matt’s Law on to the Senate Judiciary.

I can’t express to you enough the incredible feeling it was to see all the Matt’s Supporters in their red especially when Senator Migden recognized everyone showing their support and had you all stand up. I can’t thank you enough for weathering the rain and just plain nasty weather to make it to the Capitol yesterday.

I am not sure if everyone made it to Senator Torlakson’s office afterward but he thanked everyone for coming and relayed how important it is to continue to come in support as the hearings continue. He also spoke of a letter writing campaign to all the University Presidents, Chancellors, Athletic Directors, Fraternities and Sororities and so on. He will be getting a letter together and we will be putting it on Matt’s site along with addresses and email addresses to make this as easy as possible.

Please start writing in support of Matt’s Law to Senator Dunn who is the Judiciary Chair. We have two weeks before our next hearing so unfortunately there is no time to rest. If you have time and wouldn’t mind you can copy all the Members of the Judiciary Committee the letter you send Senator Dunn, there are four total and you can find their information on Matt’s site.

The fact that our bill went with a unanimous vote is awesome and should go a long way in helping us obtain our goal but we cannot take anything for granted. As I have said before this bill, as good as it is, will not pass itself.

Thank you to everyone for coming to the hearing, thank you to those that wore their red and Matt Badges, if you had them, yesterday in support of Matt’s Law and thank you to everyone for all the letters and support.

“Hug your children and tell them you love them everyday”

Debbie, MM

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. In April of 2024, the Alaska Press Club awarded him first place in the Best Columnist division and Best Humorist, second place.

He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily-- and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

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