Hazing News

Must read: Parent with video camera captures demeaning co-ed initiation connected to high school activity

Here is the link to the Washington Post and an excerpt

Good story by reporter Kyle Swenson. What part of “Please stop” didn’t the hazers understand?

The older team members shouted that the freshman had to do their dance routines, according to court records. As the girls fumbled through the steps, the older kids started bombing them with water balloons, some filled with oatmeal. They were sprayed with large water guns filled with ketchup. The senior team members then told the girls to strip down on the bikinis they had been ordered to wear. They were given garbage bags to don like dresses. A tarp, sticky with maple syrup and feathers, was unrolled on the ground. The young girls were ordered to wrestle.

“Last one standing wins.”

The young girls began toppling each other while helplessly begging. “Please stop, please stop.”

The high school hazing mayhem did not go unnoticed on the night of August 9, 2014. From nearby trees, Taissa Achcar-Winkels secretly filmed her 14-year-old daughter’s public humiliation.

“I was not OK with what had happened,” Achcar-Winkels’s daughter, identified in court records only by initials, told a federal court this week, according to the Lake Oswego Review. “I was terrified. I thought that had I stood up and said I didn’t want to do it, it wouldn’t have ended up well either way.”

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. 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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