View Full Version : Bulletin Article-Knights Violate Ethos

04-18-2008, 05:49 PM
Article (http://media.www.gonzagabulletin.com/media/storage/paper375/news/2008/04/11/Opinion/Knights.Violate.Ethos-3318449.shtml)
Thought it would be interesting to get the views of current and former knights regarding this article. If its all true, it shows a disturbing lack of judgement on their part.

04-19-2008, 10:03 AM
Is this a Campus organization unique to Gonzaga? With your grabber I thought perhaps it dealt with the "Knights of Columbus" or something similar to the Newman Club, both which I am a proud member and never went through any "ceremony" such as the writer witnessed. I will say that the secular humanist notion that there are no absolute rights and wrongs and that every action must be judged relative to that involved is utter nonsense in my opinion. I guess what I am saying is that it is entirely possible that what may appeared to the writer as racist bigotry could indeed be considered rational & neccessary by those involved.

04-20-2008, 07:39 AM
As the longest standing organization on campus, the Knights have built up many friends and foes. I was a knight in 2004-2005. During my time we raised over 32,000$ for L'Arche, a great charity that houses adult mentally and physicaly handicapped. As well, we each put in at least 2 hours per week at that charity, and countless hours volunteering wherever possible - both on and off campus. The knights serve as free labor for a lot of Gonzaga events. Just the other night they worked a coat check at senior ball, and they will be ushers this year at graduation.

I feel they get a neg rep on campus because the members tend to drink. People think since they are a group that centers on service, they should not socialize like the rest of the university. Their three pillars are: Service, Leadership, Brotherhood.

Yes they have tryouts. Typically 75-100 students a year try out for 30 spots. It is just the logistics of the group. With the way the service is designed, and to maintain the close unity of the group, 30 is about as many as should be in the group. Then, combined with the Setons (30 female group) that is 60 people who work on a lot of the same projects together. By adding more you will loose the family like atmosphere and there will be many idle hands.

So, while the tryouts are far from a frat, they do have to do some tasks, that in my opinion, and generally hilarious. In recent years the administration has cracked down on them. I am guessing that this task that comes into question was not outlined in this manner. I am guessing the pledges made some twists and thought it would be funny. Sorry, you cant expect freshman in college to be 100% PC.

So, while many on campus hate the knights, they never really know why. I talk to plenty of people who think it is just a drinking organization, which is a joke. I wager that barely any students will accomplish in 4 years what a knight does in one year, service wise.

04-20-2008, 10:07 AM
Zagnut, I always wondered why the Knights were a one year deal. Perhaps you could enlighten me. BTW While I think that these specific knights showed some poor judgement, the Knights organization as a whole is a very positive thing for Gonzaga and the community.

04-20-2008, 10:27 AM
To be honest, there is no definite answer. My guess, from being in it, is that it is an intense organization. While a lot truly buy into the full time servant motto, some don't. I think if you asked people to do it for 3-4 years, a lot would be burnt out. It isn't easy getting up at 8am a few Saturdays a week to go build a house or do some other manual labor. It consumes about 6 hours a week in service, and I think by making it a one year deal, you keep people enthused about it. At the beginning there is the hype, and towards the end, when there can be a letdown, you are motivated to meet your goals and finish strong.

Also, I think it goes back to the total number of members. I guess you could do 10 per class, and make it a 40 person org, but I think you would loose out on a lot of elements that make the organization great.

Also, it's not like you cannot serve if you don't make knights. There are endless possibilities provided by casstle.

05-06-2008, 12:53 PM
I find it funny how people associate the Knights with the Greek system (fraternities/sororities). There's really no comparison between the two other than being a communal group and some community service. Being Greek at a Pac-10 school (Delta Tau Delta / Epsilon Gamma) and transferring to GU, I never understood the "Triangle Symbol (Delta) with the K (Kappa)" that the Knights wore on their rugby sweaters, nor did I understand why they would want to portray themselves as being something they are far from being--especially at a small school like Gonzaga. I wonder how many Knights know what it means to be Greek and the process it takes to get there. I was only a Knight in high school (GPrep), and not at GU, but I've had several friends who were Knights, and from what they told me, being a Knight and being Greek is like night and day.

As far as the article is concerned, the gist that I got from it is much like what the Greeks have to battle with when it comes to the GDIs. Unless you're a Knight/Seton, Greek, or GDI, you'll never truly understand the other side nor will you understand the events that transpire as a member of these groups. What happened was probably done in poor taste, but to write an editorial about it and drawing unnecessary attention to it is probably going a little too far. :cool:

05-06-2008, 08:58 PM
triangle K is gone. it was my year that decided to do away with it. we all sat down, decided we needed to improve our perception and let people know we aren't a frat. nobody could tell us why it was a triangle k, so now it is a knight's helmet I believe. I think every year may do something unique now...dunno though

The author of the article needs to spend a weekend in Pullman to see what a frat truly is

05-07-2008, 02:41 PM
Triangle K = Change in Knights.

The Knights (and Setons) was alway a one year, Sophomore service organization. I enjoyed it very much, and so did most of my brothers. Some of the members did not really "get it," but overall, it is much like ZagNut was saying. A bunch of little volunteer projects as well as a couple large service projects throughout the year. We also had a couple of parties... but those were not officially sanctioned by the Club.

I think the Knights and Setons are great for Gonzaga but there is always some who equate them with Greeks or just don't understand what the organizations are about. I feel mixed about getting rid of the Triangle K, but in the end, I think it is a good idea.

15 years after being a Knight... I still have my Rugby hanging in the closet.

05-07-2008, 06:40 PM
It would be interesting to find out if the author tried and was unsuccessful in becoming a Knight. I know that's neither here nor there (maybe).

I certainly enjoyed contributing as a Knight my Sophomore year at Gonzaga. Sure, in retrospect my initiation was kind of brutal -- but at the time the guy initiating you was someone you were close to -- so I always felt he had my back. That was certainly the case with the guy I initiated the following year.

One difference -- we wore slacks, jackets and ties. I don't know how many polyesters had to die to make our outfits.

And to answer the original post -- I do think the initiation witnessed by the author was a little over the top -- particularly in a public setting.

05-07-2008, 09:22 PM
In Spring 1976, during the week the Knights were to pick the new crop, some guys " Knighted" a fellow; they had him out on the sports field next to Cath-Monica at 2:00 am in his underwear, shouting "I'm a Knight ! I'm a Knight."

Only problem was the arseholes doing the "knight-ing" weren't really Knights and the guy they "initiated" hadn't been selected by the real McCoys. . .one of the cruelest practical jokes ever, IMHO.

When school resumed in the Fall of 1976, the victim of the cruel joke was offered and accepted a slot in the organization by the 76 - 77 edition of the Knights. Classy move on their part.