The University of Washington’s Greek Row was the site of a rally and block party in protest of alleged sexual assaults, racism, and verbal harassment by members of fraternities. Hundreds of students, activists, and members of fraternities and sororities attended the street party on 17th between 45th and 47th. Seattle police blocked the streets for the day and put up metal barricades along the sides of the street. A table with zines was available to answer questions about misogyny and white privilege while people spoke about their experiences with fraternities, from drugged drinks to attempted sexual assault and rape. Talented performers and MC’s spoke truth through the mic while calling out the fraternities and sororities for not stopping issues perpetuated by the Greek system. Members of fraternities and sororities with houses near the event could be seen sitting on the steps of their houses or lined up on the sidewalk, outside of the barricade, listening to the speakers and music. When approached, however, members of the Greek society at UW were reluctant to speak on the record. Those that did, said that they supported the event and that it was “timely”. The event ended with no arrests and the only yelling came from passengers in cars as they drove by. None of the vitriolic comments seen on the Facebook event page were heard at this event.
From the Facebook event page…
To the Rebels & Rejects of Society:
Greek Row has been a place where too many of us have been shut out of for too long. We have been told we are too fat, too dark skinned, not able-bodied and don’t fit the model.
The frats have repeatedly attacked us. Both physically and verbally, they have said black lives don’t matter, they have raped us and then called us sluts & liars, they have trashed trans people making fun of them at fashion shows, they have physically attacked black woman. They tell us it is not all- but it is too many. It is time they are held accountable for these actions.
On this night we will take over and claim space on Greek Row, we will give ourselves access to this space. On this night we will center black lives, queer lives and differently abled/ disabled lives, and we will check their privilege.
To make this space accessible as possible we ask that you are scent free
Para los rebeldes y renegados de la sociedad:
La Fila Griego (“Greel Row”) ha sido un lugar donde much@s de nosotr@s hemos sido excluid@s por demasiado tiempo. Se nos ha dicho que somos demasiad@ gord@, demasiad@ moren@, no físicamente capacitad@ y no cabemos en su modelo.
Las fraternidades nos han atacado en varias ocasiones. Tanto física y verbalmente, que han dicho que las vidas negras no les importan, que nos han violado y luego nos han llamado putas y mentirosas, han destrozado a las personas trans que se burlan de ell@s en los desfiles de moda, han atacado físicamente a mujeres negras. Nos dicen que no es todo—pero es demasiado. Es la hora de que sean responsables por estas acciones. En esta noche vamos a tomar el relevo y reclamar espacio en la fila griega, vamos a darnos acceso a este espacio. En esta noche vamos a centrar las vidas negras, queer, y las vidas con capacidades diferentes / discapacitadas, y checaremos su privilegio.
Para hacer este espacio lo más accesible posible, le pedimos que usted esté libre de fragancias.” – https://www.facebook.com/events/1586531744943129/