I've refrained from making a comment on my actual [Facebook] page until this point, but I feel like a PSA is in order as a lot of my friends are not from the OSUMB and may still be forming their opinions.
As my husband and I, who met as undergrads while members of TBDBITL, were digesting the news yesterday, my mom recalled the night I first made the band. The date was September 12, 2001. The day before her just-turned-18 year old daughter was "alone" on a huge campus, away from home during the worst terrorist attack this country has ever seen. This was the age before cell phones and my dorm phone had yet to be assigned. She was worried to death as any parent would be in that situation, not knowing what was happening around the country at that time except campus was on lockdown. The night of September 12 my mom and dad drove to Columbus and sat outside the band center for two hours waiting on news of whether I had "made it" or not. I remember running outside, filled with joy that my hard work and blood, sweat, and tears had payed off and couldn't wait to tell them. I remember introducing them to my new squad leaders, Tim Cremean and Jason Mishtawy, who looked her in the eye and said "Don't worry, mom, we'll take care of her." And they did. My mom said she knew the stuff that goes on when kids go to college, but she never worried about me because over the course of the 4 years I was a member and then a squad leader myself, that group of men and and women become your family. Did shenanigans and questionable things take place? Of course! We were a bunch of 18-22 year old idiots! But did I ever feel forced, coerced, or threatened to participate in anything? Absolutely not. I look back on my time spent in that hard working, exceptional organization as some of the best and most character-building of my life. And I'll never regret it.