#BeBethical: Let’s Make it a Thing

in Opinion by
Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 19.06.45Jason Stormer |The Clarion
The following is an opinion piece and does not necessarily reflect the views of the institution or The Clarion. If you would like to respond or submit an opinion piece of your own, please contact Editor in Chief Jared Nelson.

What it do? Welcome to the first edition of “The Royale with Cheese.” The reason I’m addressing myself as Cheese will be explained later. Regardless, I hope you’re all picking up on the Pulp Fiction reference that this column’s named after.

Man, I love that movie. Don’t you love the scene after Bruce Willis gets knocked out by the store clerk and…

Sorry, I’ve got to stop there. It wouldn’t be Bethical of me to continue.

I also love that word, Bethical. It’s a brilliant play on words. Doesn’t that just perfectly summarize the manner of which our university wants us, the student body, to represent ourselves?

I’m not trying to be sarcastic or anything. I actually like the word. I think the university should start a #BeBethical social media campaign. Maybe slap that hashtag on some t-shirt during Welcome Week or something.

Now, I understand a word like Bethical can act as a negative stereotype towards the perception of students here. It’s no secret that there are a lot of stereotypes about this university out there.

“Bethel Bubble” and “ring by spring” are some that come to mind first. I’ve heard others like “pray before every class,” “go to chapel every day” and “no sobriety, no salvation.”

I hear them from a variety of people, mostly from friends at St. Thomas and other MIAC schools. I get asked all the time if some Bethel stereotypes are true or not.

Of course, they wouldn’t be good friends if they made sure I was also being a good, Bethel boy by asking me stuff like, “Have you been Bethical today, Cheese?”

Of course, my immediate response to something like that goes along the lines of Staff Sgt. Sean Dignam, but I have to keep that Bethelical, too.

If you’re a fan of the film or Mark Wahlberg, you’ll know the quote. If you’re not, then maybe you’ll know it. Maybe not. Maybe go see the movie.

Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 19.05.44You’ll see that the Departed’s just a big stereotype, itself. Everyone’s got a wicked accent and it makes everyone from Boston look like gangsters and street toughs. But the plot, acting and directing was solid, like the gold of the Oscar statue for Best Picture the movie won in 2006.

The stereotypes are blatant, but everything else about that movie’s well executed, so people haven’t concerned themselves whether or not the film’s insensitive towards Bostonians. The film’s other attributing factors quell the negativity of those stereotypes.

We can do that with a stereotype like Bethical. If we embrace and surround it with positive attributes, we can defeat any negative connotation associated with it.

For the sake of my argument, let’s start embracing Bethical right here, right now. To do so, we must give it a clear de nition, so let’s look at the root words:

Bethel University (according to Wikipedia): an evangelical Christian higher education institution with approximately 6,000 students from 36 countries enrolled in undergraduate, graduate, seminary, and adult education programs.

Ethical (according to a dictionary.com): pertaining to or dealing with morals or the principles of morality; pertaining to right and wrong in conduct.

Combine the two and, voilà, you have Bethical’s first definition:

Bethical (according to Cheese): pertaining to or dealing with morals or the principles of morality an evangelical Christian higher education institution uses to come to a deduction pertaining to right and wrong in conduct.

Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 19.07.31Why wouldn’t you want to be associated to a stereotype like that if you’re a Royal?

That definition tells me that Bethel University and its students hold themselves accountable to a moral code and high standards. at says a lot about us wanting to be good people within our society.

Be proud to #BeBethical

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