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Willamette Fraternity's Private Facebook Posts Leaked, Sparks Campus Outrage

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A website posting leaked screenshots from a Willamette University fraternity's private Facebook group sparked a protest and further backlash at the Oregon campus this week.

Screenshots from a private Sigma Chi Delta Zeta Facebook group were posted on a WordPress site called "willamettetruth," showing members discussing secret fraternity events, mocking school officials and making sexist comments. The website began to go viral around the Willamette community over the weekend, KPTV reported, and quickly drew backlash against the fraternity.

Around 40 students protested on campus Monday carrying signs quoting the leaked Facebook posts and saying the posts speak to greater problems of not supporting women on campus, according to the Statesman Journal.

One post warned members to mind their "Ps and Qs" around administrators. Another post detailed pledges' violations and other things they've done to "f**k up." Among the alleged violations: getting on Facebook, using email, eating cake at an athlete appreciation event and discussing initiation week with unaffiliated students.

One post complained about students being "unsocial," but then requested his brothers "invite any girl who has a pulse" to their house parties. Another said, "woman's [sic] rights are the biggest joke in the US. Bitches ain't shit."

Many of the leaked posts appeared to be discussions about living in the house, albeit sprinkled with profanity and poor syntax.

A staff editorial in the Salem, Ore., Statesman Journal condemned the "sexist language and vulgar conduct" of the Facebook posts.

The fraternity drew a similar reaction from Sigma Chi national executive director Mike Dunn. "I'm appalled that a young man would even begin to say these things let alone put it in writing," Dunn said in a statement, according to the Associated Press. "It's certainly embarrassing on the part of Sigma Chi."

Dunn told KPTV that 12 members of the fraternity were kicked out this week as a result of the posts.

The fraternity issued an apology on its public Facebook page Sunday:

The Men of Sigma Chi would like to formally and sincerely apologize for the thoughts shared in our private Facebook group. What was said in these posts do not reflect the true goals and ideals of our Chapter as characterized through our Three Great Aims of Friendship, Justice, and Learning.

One of the fraternity member's tires were slashed over the weekend and Salem police are investigating whether it was related to the posts, according to KPTV.

UPDATE, May 10: Willamette University announced Thursday the school suspended Sigma Chi pending a review by the university conduct system and the national parent organization of the fraternity:

“The review process will focus on individual students’ conduct” says Dean of Campus Life, David Douglass. The conduct review process will extend into the summer. Some students involved in leadership or campus employment positions have already been dismissed, and others are under review.

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