college students drinking

College students pouring beer into cups at University of Wisconsin party.

As an African American student that has a social life around campus, I have noticed every time the Black community at East Carolina University has a party the police department shut it down but when white fraternities have their almost weekly parties the police are nowhere to be found.

Over the year I’ve been at ECU, particularly last semester around finals time, I noticed the police seem to shut down every Black party there was. I remember one night they followed us from venue to venue. After they shut down one party we would regroup and find another location. They would follow us to the next location and shut it down again.

I find this very weird knowing there are no outside drinks, drugs or weapons allowed at Black parties. There is always security at the entrance of the event to prevent this. I attended a handful of white fraternity parties last year ranging from Halloween parties to the weekly Wine Wednesdays last semester and the police never came around.

It seems like at any fraternity party, Truly’s and White Claws are always at the scene. When I attended the fraternity parties there was what seemed to be an unlimited amount of alcohol provided and members of the fraternity would simply hand out the drinks to whoever asked.

It’s infuriating to me how the police turn a blind eye to fraternity members obtaining and distributing alcohol to mostly minors but are quick to interfere with every attempt by the Black community to have fun especially when open alcohol isn’t an issue at Black events.

To me, it seems like the police jump at the opportunity to shut down an event hosted by Black people because of the stereotypical thought that Black people equal violence. It’s unfair that the fraternities host parties close to campus and the events are well known by students but continue to happen.

I’m not saying a full investigation is needed but as a community we’d like to be treated equally. I would just like to be able to go out and enjoy myself without my time being wasted because of the police showing up within the first hour of the event starting. It’s frustrating not being able to have any events without them being university approved like the Divine 9 Step Show.

We’ve tried house parties, shut down. We’ve tried hosting parties at venues closer to campus, shut down. During Homecoming week we held a party at a venue on the outskirts of Greenville, shut down. This never happened at any of the white fraternity events I’ve attended.

What is it? If there is no alcohol being served what is the issue? Is it because of the mass of Black people? We just want to dance and have fun as a community, similar to that of the white fraternities.

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