Nia Decaille from #TheRoot calls black sororities a “cisgender women’s club” and wants this to change. “I say this about my organization and others when I say it’s time to revisit what it means to be a National Pan-Hellenic Council, or NPHC, woman,” she writes. “And by that, I mean it’s time to stop clutching our pearls about lifestyles we don’t ‘accept’ or ‘understand,’ and admit that we have created a culture that is the antithesis of liberating black people.”
Decaille, who is a member of #AlphaKappaAlpha Sorority, Inc., goes on to explain that since these prestigious organizations tend to be rooted in Christianity, sometimes they accept only one idea of what a woman is or should be… straight and feminine. This indoctrination has prevented many women from joining a black Greek-letter organization, and even some of those who have joined feel that the organizations are not as accepting.
Rachel Crouch, a masculine-identifying lesbian who has been a member of #DeltaSigmaTheta Sorority, Inc. for 15 years, shared details of her experience as a member of the sorority with The Root. She said she “actually pretended to be straight so my sexuality wasn’t the determining factor.” Crouch was hesitant about joining the organization because she didn’t want to change who she really was and remained “in the closet” anytime she was with her sorors.
A straight, Black woman who is a part of a BGLO seems to be held in high regard as she is the epitome of Black femininity to many of her peers. After all, many families view joining a BGLO as the pinnacle of Black excellence? And with the way that the world is progressing, shouldn’t transgender women be able to cash in on this excellence too?
Decaille didn’t touch on this in her article, but we would love to know what you guys think!
Head on over to TheRoot.Com to read Nia Decaille’s entire article. It includes findings from a study on the LGBT experience in BGLO’s lead by Brandon Stroud of the University of Rochester, an educator who identifies as a femme, gay man and member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.
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