Opinion: Coming out of the Closet

by Dick Johnson

As a society, we are uncomfortably accustomed to being slotted within ranking system, whether it be socioeconomically, professionally, or familial. In high school, people are shunted into their “proper place”; they’re told to fit the mold, to not express themselves, to hide a part of themselves that is as intrinsic to them as breathing.

That’s what I’ve had to do almost all my life. Ever since I was a little kid, I was told I was different for loving what and who I love, that I had to hide myself from others. That’s why it’s been so hard to say this, but I’ve gone too long hiding, and I won’t go on farther.

So here it is, for everyone: I love TKE.

All over social media, TKEs are called out as “lame” and “try-hards.” One anonymous commenter on Yik Yak found out that “TKEs downloaded the new U2 album on purpose.” At USC, the word ‘TKE’ is synonymous with ‘shitty’, and hating on TKE has become a culture, taking on a life of its own.

Well, not anymore. I’m standing up and speaking out. Because I like TKE, and I’m not afraid to say it.

My answer to your question is no, I’m not a TKE pledge writing an article to get people to like our house. My answer to your second question is no, this isn’t a joke. Your third question- I prefer TKE West.

It’s so terrifying to publicly acknowledge my true feelings. Those who have tried it before me lost most of their friends, dramatically defriended by all on Facebook.

When I tell guys in other frats that I have friends in TKE, they run away from me. One guy even whimpered a little bit thinking about a girl stepping into TKE. It’s been really hard for me to come out, but I’m finally opening up about how I feel.

Every year, I look forward to TKE Halloween, even though I have to get there at 10 p.m. on the spot to make sure it doesn’t get filled to capacity by the new 3,000-person pledge class. When TKE throws its annual Brochella, I buy my tickets a years in advance. I used to pretend I didn’t care about TKE’s events, but I do- I DO.

I hope this article will encourage other TKE lovers to come out and express their true feelings as well. TKEs have done so much for this society- did you know that the founder of Grindr was a TKE? Think about that the next time you want to make a TKE joke.