Gay Student Alleges Frat Bias, Campus Reacts


Morgan students weigh in on Kappa controversy (Video by Kyle Yearwood, Nneka Caldwell, Faven Amanuel)

The MSU Spokesman

A Morgan State senior filed a complaint against the Alpha Iota chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi this week alleging that he had been denied membership to the fraternity due to his sexual orientation.

Honors student Brian Stewart who is openly gay told the national press this week that he filed the complaint after receiving a screenshot of a GroupMe chat where fraternity members referred to him as a “fag,” but advised giving “the perception of a fair & equal opportunity.”

“I was so hurt,” Stewart told the Huffington Post on Tuesday. “I didn’t know I was going to have no control, that my interview meant nothing that my achievements meant nothing because they had already made up their minds.”

On the Morgan campus, Stewart’s allegations have sparked heated conversations among students. Some aren’t surprised and say such derogatory comments against gays are common here. Others insist this can’t be tolerated.

Morgan student Derek Owens puts it simply: “You can’t deny someone access to a group based on their sexuality. That’s just wrong.”

Shawn Barbour, sophomore, says, “I think it’s discrimination but I don’t really have any feelings about it. When you choose a lifestyle, it’s certain things that go with it.”

Some students also worried about Morgan’s reputation on the heels of this. “I feel like it was really wrong and seeing the messages on social media made the situation worse,” says Morgan senior Courtnee Thomas. “A lot of students felt like he should have never took it that far because of the bad press Morgan received.”

Others praised Stewart for speaking out. “I think that he should have never been denied for his sexual orientation and I’m glad he spoke out about it instead of being silent because he brought out a matter that needs to be expressed,” says Morgan junior Nyjole Mindley. “Hopefully things can be resolved peacefully.”

Vice President of Student Affairs Kevin M. Banks couldn’t comment on the process and disciplinary actions related to this incident because it is still premature and currently in the review stages. However he did say, “there is an advisory counsel that has been put in place in 2012 called LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transexual, Queers) designed to support and explore solutions to support students dealing with sexual discrimination. Education is a primary vehicle to raise awareness, and support to our Morgan family.”

There will be a conference at the Student Center on Tuesday at 7 p.m. that focuses on homosexuality awareness and support.