by G. Brown
Seven people have been indicted in connection with a sex scandal at a university near Atlanta Georgia.
Among those indicted…a middle school principal, a city manager, and a local pastor. The charges include sodomy and pandering in the case where officials say Fort Valley State University employee and Alpha Kappa Alpha adviser Alecia Johnson faces additional charges of prostitution, pimping and solicitation for running a prostitution ring.
The scandal forced Johnson to step down from her job as an executive assistant to the university’s president. She also served as a graduate adviser to the campus’ AKA chapter. According to Rolling Out.com, Johnson “allegedly performed sex acts in exchange for money and helped to provide prostitutes to prominent men in the college community…” What’s not clear is whether Johnson used any of her sorority sisters in the alleged ring since she is facing six counts of prostitution and three counts of pimping. The AKA connection may be nothing more than Johnson just happens to be a soror of the sorority and was not using the group to supply young escorts.
Dragging the nation’s oldest and first Black intercollegiate sorority for African-American women is just one of the sad footnotes to this whole sordid scandal. AKA National has tried to distance itself from smear by launching its own investigation and by withdrawing the Fort Valley chapter’s privileges. But the damage is done…seven people who were considered respectable and even probably role models one day are today caught up in a mess that’s reverberating through an entire campus, a historic sorority, at least one church, a middle school, and a Black community. Not to mention each of the seven people indicted presumably has families that are being affected. Sure we can sit back and judge all the adults involved and shrug off with ‘they did this to themselves’, but the impact of consequences target an entire Black community, a historic Black sorority and a portion of Black history itself. Even if you’re not named in the indictments, the actions of a few will cause a lot of innocent people to live under the indictment. A premiere Black sorority, no matter how tenuous or intricately tied to a prostitution ring will have to live with public scrutiny and judgment. An established and revered HBCU will also have to live down the scandal. Ivy League schools can face a pay to play scandal with Hollywood actors and walk away relatively unscathed, but that doesn’t mean an HBCU can do the same. Neither should be able to get away with any kind of scandal. Do you think justice and history will weigh both scandals the same?