PLEASE NOTE: The views and commentary expressed herein are general comments only, meant to be of an informative nature, and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated.

Q: What is the meaning regarding being "real" or "paper"?
Q: What is an underground line?
Q: What is meant by the term, "black balled"?
Q: In relationship to Phi Beta Sigma and Zeta Phi Beta, what is meant by "true family"?
Q: So the Alphas & AKAs, Deltas & Omegas, & Kappas & SGRhos aren't brother/sister organizations?
Q: Was Alpha Phi Alpha the first Black Greek-Letter Organization?
Q: Why do Black Greek organizations put each other down and not strive for unity?
Q: Why are organizations labeled with stereotypes?
Q: Why do Black Fraternities & Sororities employ Greek letters, instead of an African based alphabet?
Q: Are Fraternities & Sororities high classed gangs?
Q: How would Phi Beta Sigma impact my life?
Q: What does Phi Beta Sigma do?
Q: Why should I consider joining Phi Beta Sigma?
Q: How can you identify a Sigma ma
n?

Q: What is the meaning regarding being "real" or "paper"?

A: "Paper" is a term used to identify a Greek Fraternity or Sorority member who didn't pledge. This person became a member through either an intake process, or by joining a Graduate/Alumni Chapter.

"Real" is a term used to identify those persons who underwent the pledge process. During the pledge period they learn rituals, secrets, history, and tests of Brotherhood & Sisterhood through the teachings of the dean of pledging.

*Please note: "paper" is also a term of disrespect and warrants trouble when thrusted upon the identity of someone who considers themselves "real." Additionally, in all states and institutions of higher learning, pledging is illegal and that you and others run the risk of university expulsion/suspension and possible criminal prosecution.

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Q: What is an underground line?

A: In the 80's before pledging was banned, if there was a line, everyone knew who was pledging. Now it's more less a secret. An underground line can exist for example, when a Chapter is suspended, but they pick up a line off the record. An underground line usually warrants trouble and confusion. The process is null and void in the eyes of nationals and you run the risk that your paperwork will not be processed. The National Office considers that you don't exist if you were on an underground pledge line.

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Q: What is meant by the term, "black balled"?

A: "Black balled" or "balled" are terms used to describe situations when a person doesn't make line for certain reasons or is not voted in by a majority vote by current members.

TOP 5 REASONS WHY YOU MIGHT GET BLACK BALLED:

* Caught throwing up the hand signal or doing the call in public, before it was time to!

* Purchasing paraphernalia, before you make line. (Which is usually a sign of bad luck)

* Expecting to make line because you meet all the requirements or you're legacy.

* You were on an underground line and the line was revealed.

* You went to another organizations informational and submitted.

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Q: In relationship to Phi Beta Sigma and Zeta Phi Beta, what is meant by "true family"?

A: "True Family" is a term used by members of Phi Beta Sigma & Zeta Phi Beta for they were the first and only constitutionally bonded Greek Fraternity/Sorority, brother/sister organization. Sharing the several of the same cardinal principles within each respective organization. Sigma & Zeta both share the same colors, creed, symbols from their shields, and the namesake of the PHI BETA. They are true originators of the terms "Frat" & "Soror".

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Q: So the Alphas & AKAs, Deltas & Omegas, and Kappas & SGRhos aren't brother/sister organizations?

A: Formally the Greek organizations above aren't Brother/Sister or Frat/Soror. But each holds a mutual alliance to each other.

* "Phi-Skee"& "Skee-Phi" are terms used by the Alpha's and AKA's to represent their bond of being the first Black Greek Fraternity & Sorority respectively, but they aren't necessarily Frat or Soror, but in many cases they do respect each organization as Frat or Soror. But The Alpha's and AKA's are known as the first family of Black Greeks. On some campuses the AKA's & Kappa's call each other Frat or Soror. United under the cause that "pretty boys like pretty girls, cause pretty girls like pretty boys."

* There's also the terms "Phi-Oop" & "Oop-Phi" is which the Alpha's & Delta's use to acknowledge each other. The Delta's & Omega's share a bond that can be traced back to the early years of their organizations. Although they aren't constitutionally bonded like Zeta & Sigma, they do indeed consider each other Frat & Soror. One of Delta's founders Edna Coleman was the wife of Omega founder Frank Coleman. Several Delta's dated Omega men early on within the early establishment of each.

* Kappa Alpha Psi & Sigma Gamma Rho hold the distinction of both being founded at universities in the state of Indiana. Which are about 50 miles away from each other.

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Q: Was Alpha Phi Alpha the first Black Greek-Letter Organization?

A: Although credit is given to Alpha Phi Alpha as being the first and oldest Black Greek-Letter Organization. It must be known that Alpha Phi Alpha is the first to organize successfully and expand into new Chapters. Who was first?

* In 1904, Sigma Pi Phi was founded under the direction of Henry M. Minton in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This organization was founded for Negro's within the professional ranks of society.
* In 1905, Gamma Phi was founded at Wilburforce College in Ohio. It was the first collegiate Black Greek-Letter Organization. It existed for 30 years.

So in light Alpha Phi Alpha is the first to successfully grow, and is the oldest to date. But Sigma Pi Phi(Graduates) and Gamma Phi(Collegiate) were the first.

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Q: Why do Black Greek organizations put each other down and not strive for unity?

A: Unity amongst Black Greek letter organizations was first implemented in 1930 at Howard University. In this year The National Pan Hellenic Council was formed as a governing body to aid organizations in a bond of common causes. Although some members do take Greek life too seriously, it is important to realize that these persons have missed the entire purpose of their founders and the organizations goals for the "upliftment of the black race". Each organization does employ chants and steps that may seem disrespectful in a Non-Greeks eyes. But it's merely a competition, a rivalry to keep each other on their toes. But each Fraternity and Sorority has a mutual understanding and respect for the others, it's just most of the time Non-Greeks don't see that.

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Q: Why are organizations labeled with stereotypes?

A: Everyone who has heard all the stereotypes of each particular organization. It is important to realize no matter which particular organization you choose to go into, you will have an image to uphold. Organizations have long been misconceived for various reasons. It's up to the members of these Greek organizations to convince the public that the misconceptions are of false attributes.
But if a Non Greek person views one person doing something, then they attribute that image or act to the entire organization. You shouldn't judge or dictate an entire fraternity or sorority on the basis of one member. Look beyond the misconceptions and see what they're truly about. Are they about business and community service, or are they about looking cute, acting a fool in public, and wearing letters? That should be an organization you shouldn't want to join. You learn your ways from traditions that have been handed down during the pledge process.

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Q: Why do Black Fraternities & Sororities employ Greek letters, instead of an African based alphabet?

A: The origin of Greek letters can be traced back to the first Fraternity Phi Beta Kappa. It is important to understand that the Greek writing system and philosophies has connections to Africa, particularly Egypt. The Greeks went to Africa and stole the writings, philosophies, and lifestyles of the Egyptians. Although each organization does employ Greek letters the objective of the Fraternity was founded with the use of Greek letters. So keeping with the tradition, that constitutes the reasons why.
However, each particular organization employs some type of reference to Africa within the organization. To become Greek you should know the history that not only did the Greeks study in Egypt, but Jesus & Moses did as well. Also understand the concept of Phonetics and it's creators the Phoenicians.

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Q: Are Fraternities & Sororities high classed gangs?

A: There are many arguments whether or not Fraternities & Sororities are gangs. This basically refers to the said similarities of the Black Greek pledge process and the gang initiation process. This statement is totally false. Fraternities and Sororities are NOT gangs in any way, shape, or form.
Check the facts:

1. Fraternities & Sororities provide a service to the public vs. gangs are a threat to the public.

2. There are apparent leadership roles within Fraternity & Sorority members. vs. gangs have no vision or leadership roles in the community.

3. In order to join a Black Greek Fraternity or Sorority must be pursuing a college degree vs. typical gang member not pursuing a college degree.

*Please note that some gang symbols and hand signs coincide with some Black Greek Fraternity or Sorority symbols or hand signs.

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Sigma In Your Life...
Attending college is more than a formal education. It's getting along through good times and bad. It's facing new challenges and frustrations; its memories indelibly etched in your mind for a lifetime.
Phi Beta Sigma can play an important part in making your college experience positive, fulfilling, and rewarding. Phi Beta Sigma nurtures individuality while providing greater opportunities for Brotherhood, Scholarship, and Service. Phi Beta Sigma is continuity from yesterday to today to tomorrow. It's yesterday with its traditions and goals carried on from generations past. It's today as a home away from home and a center for your college activities. It's tomorrow as a creator of friendships and ideals that will last your whole life.
Remember, the parties and stepshows come and go, but the brotherhood will last a lifetime. Fraternities have personalities. As you would measure an individual, so you should measure a fraternity. Phi Beta Sigma seeks to attract young men of vision and character. Such young men will mold the future of the Fraternity and carry its ideals and principles on to the next generation. We hope you will consider the part Phi Beta Sigma can play in your life.

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What We Do
Locally, the brothers of the Lambda Tau Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma are involved in a many great endeavors geared toward the betterment of our local community. From mentoring and tutoring children in Opa Locka, to adopting local elementary schools, we have shown a commitment not only to our brotherhood, but to the people of the greater Miami area.
We are also committed to academic achievement; after all this is our reason for being in college. This commitment is reflected in the academic requirements that we have for membership as well as the number of men that go on to graduate and professional programs.

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"Why Should I Join?"
This is a question that all of us have asked. Perhaps the most apparent offering of any fraternity is Brotherhood. This bond is alive and well between all brothers of Phi Beta Sigma. This bond is made possible by our working together on chapter projects as well as brotherhood events where we just take time to have fun. The brothers here enjoy the same bond with brothers worldwide.
This idea of Brotherhood is part of all that we do as a fraternity and filters into many aspects of the collegiate experience. The strength of our Brotherhood comes from the wide variety of men within our Brotherhood. This is not to say that every man can join Phi Beta Sigma, but shows that within our Brotherhood, there is room for many different types of men. Phi Beta Sigma does not attempt to clone its members; the individual talents of each man are seen as beneficial to the whole.

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Q: How can you identify a Sigma man?

1) He gives honor and homage to GOD. For no man can make it without his focus on the higher power which gives us all life.

2) He is dedicated to having culture for service, and he was always a service to humanity, long before he pledged his loyalty to SIGMA. For SIGMA does not make great men, great men make SIGMA.

3) He is a Nubian Citizen, Greek, Asian, etc. brother within a Greek Lettered Organization. For all SIGMA men know that the Greeks received their knowledge from the Egyptians and the Egyptians received their wisdom from the Nubian nations in the mid and southern regions of Africa.

4) He strives to be like the founders. For it is known that Most Honorable A. Langston Taylor was a strong man who commanded respect from those within and outside of SIGMA. It is a fact that Most Honorable Leonard F. Morse was a man of GOD becoming a minister and also providing the light to men and women in the community. It is truth that Most Honorable Charles I. Brown was a visionary whose legacy we search for within ourselves daily.

5) He knows that PHI BETA SIGMA Fraternity, Inc. was an original work, not to be compared or confused with any other fraternity. Yet, he is a shining example of what fraternities can be with a love for GOD, Life, and community. When he steps he steps hard, his steps are known since they are the "SIGMA Nutcracker", "The Passage" "Africa Step", "The Time Step", "The Three Deadly Venoms", and many more.

6) He loves his Queen ZETA Sorors with all his heart. He dedicates himself to a growing and blessed relationship with his sister's of the Dove because when he dedicated himself to SIGMA, he also dedicated himself to spiritual fellowship with his Constitutionally Bound Sisters. This has never been answered by another organization, for what they have cannot compare to the jewel of his heart, the Finer Women of ZETA PHI BETA Sorority, Inc.

7) He prides himself on working on his ideal of Brotherhood. He works hard at seeing his brother as an extension of himself. He cares for his brothers, because of the blue blood that flows through veins, and the SIGMA Light that shines bright in their hearts and minds. He truly is his brother's keeper.

8) He stands strong on the foundation built on scholarship. People everywhere may try to hate, but the real blue SIGMA'S we graduate. His education in life and in SIGMA never ends until that day he takes his last breath. He is a testament to working hard for his grades, earning his degree, and then leaving a legacy of precision and perfection in the wake of his path.

9) He is fast to action when it comes to the service he provides to the community. Never forget that he was the only fraternity to not only support, but SPONSOR the MILLION MAN MARCH. Who did Farrakhan thank for help with the planning of the march, giving up time, money, and office space? I can tell it was none other than PHI BETA SIGMA. If you don't believe Farrakhan then ask Brother Dr. Ben Chavis Mohammed.

10) He knows that the years 1910, 1913, and 1914 set him apart from all others. These prove to him that PHI BETA SIGMA Fraternity is an original concept rooted deep within the struggles on the ONE(1910), that got with the TWO(1913), and brought it into completion with the THREE(1914). Real SIGMA'S know the meaning of the order of these.

11) He knows that he is a brother not only amongst his brethren and sisters of Blue & White, but to all men and women of high morals and ideals. He gives Shalom (peace) to the Alpha's , the Kappa's , the Omegas , the Iotas , the Deltas , the AKAs and the SGRhos , because they are in the struggle together. He may not always agree with them, he may not always feel the same as them, but they are his brothers and sisters in the form of the brotherhood and sisterhood they all share as a common principle. The link they share may at times be strained, but in his heart and mind it will never break.

12) He is African, African American, White, Asian, etc. yet a stronger man is able to build and unite with those of different races, places, and origins. They link up like Voltron with the Black Lion in the center keeping the balance for the other colors to come. He was not founded to just bring light to his own, the man of SIGMA came to illuminate the entire U-N-I-VERSE.

13) He respects all women because of the things he finds endearing about his Queen Sorors of ZETA. He uses the love of ZETA's as his blue-print on how to love all women as his sisters.

14) He brought science to the world by way of SIGMA Brother George Washington Carver. He brought pride to the peoples of African descent by way of SIGMA Brother Huey Newton, Honorable Bro. A. Philip Randolph, and Bro. Booker T. Alexander . He ruled the African continent with the just and righteous hand by way of The Honorable SIGMA Brother Dr. Nnamdia Azikiwe, The Honorable SIGMA Brother Kwame Nkrumah, The Honorable SIGMA Brother William R. Tolbert, Jr., and The Honorable SIGMA Brother Nelson Mandela. Last, he picks 1 to 9 of the 14 ways he knows he is on point. Yet he is modest for his mission will not end until he breaths his last breath. That is why till the day he dies he represents what he calls G.O.M.A.B. which some people think they understand, but only the man of SIGMA has spent a lifetime meditating on the vision. When he passes from this realm to rest with his fathers, and the founders he will be measured by 12 inches of a rule that his brethren know, and this is the key to the Blue & White land in the heavens. Even then he will join a chapter that fellowships for eternity, where he will shine like the stars in the night sky guiding the living as they search for SIGMA Land. Then on the day of judgment GOD will even turn to him and say, "You have worked hard, keeping your thoughts focused on those things that were righteous. You truly were a valued servant of my will. Son of my own, brother of my children, well done."

So you see that a REAL SIGMA is all around you at all times. You have seen him, and maybe didn't even know he was there. You have heard him speak and given him praise, yet you thought nothing else of him. You have worshiped next to him, and only then could you have seen him as something more than the average. So in short when disrespect a man of PHI BETA SIGMA you disrespect the movers and shakers all around the world. You risk disrespecting your father, your uncle, you brother, you mentor, your teacher, your friend. Don't hate him, instead work to outdo him. I guarantee this will take several thousand lifetimes. For not even a thousand poets writing for a thousand years can completely express the strength and depth of the will of a REAL man of PHI BETA SIGMA Fraternity, Inc.

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{special thanks to Iota Mu and Alpha Lambda chapters for portions of the information provided herein}

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