Seeing as how we never quite know what is in store around the corner for our blog discussions, we share this tidbit with a bit of head-shaking. We never could have seen this one coming.
According to today's AJC:
Marching bands suspended in DeKalb over FAMU ties
In the aftermath of allegations of hazing in the death of a drum major at Florida A&M, the name of one Atlanta-area high school kept popping up.
Robert Champion, who died Nov. 19, was a Southwest DeKalb High School graduate. FAMU clarinetist Bria Hunter, injured in an earlier alleged hazing incident, was also a Southwest DeKalb graduate, as were two of the three bandmates who were charged with punching her hard enough to break her leg. (The third defendant is a Druid Hills High School graduate.)
Worried by the connection, DeKalb County School System officials began questioning band directors and other school personnel throughout the system, and what they found was troubling.
"We have documented evidence of inappropriate activity that took place over the summer," system spokesman Walter Woods told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, announcing Wednesday afternoon that the school system was indefinitely suspending marching band activities at county high schools.
The school system's investigation unearthed some troubling "activity" beyond Southwest DeKalb, Woods said. He was not willing to disclose the nature of the incidents and said the investigation could take two months.
All marching, except in special cases such as an upcoming Martin Luther King Day parade performance, will be suspended pending the outcome of the probe.
"Our concern is that student safety needs to be assured," Woods said. "And we have a zero-tolerance policy for harassment or any other inappropriate behavior."
(Click the link above to read the rest.)
So what do you say? Fair response? Is it acceptable for certain bands to be allowed to play at the MLK parade, yet all other bands are punished for misconduct for a few?
For a wildly different perspective, take a look at this video where a former FAMU band member actually blames the victims of hazing: