Any Harry Potter fan knows that not every Slytherin is evil. However, the stereotypical Slytherin *cough Draco Malfoy cough* is conniving, sly and mean.
How did this happen, and how can they fix their PR problem?
How Slytherin Became the ‘Evil’ House
1. The Malfoy family
The Malfoy family, loyal servants to He Who Must Not Be Named, are a large part of the Slytherin PR problem. Draco and his bully sidekicks made a bad name for Slytherin during the Harry Potter years. Draco’s parents Lucius and Narcissa were Death Eaters (followers of He Who Must Not Be Named) and participated in the First and Second Wizarding Wars.
2. He Who Must Not Be Named
Speaking of the Wars, He Who Must Not Be Named came from the Slytherin house himself. As a student at Hogwarts, he went by Tom Riddle. Tom is an ancestor of Salazar Slytherin, the founder of the Hogwarts House. While at Hogwarts, Tom opened Salazar’s Chamber of Secrets and used the basilisk inside to tortures students not of pure-blood magic ancestry. Clearly the House’s association with the darkest wizard of all time would lead to the PR problem they face today.
Slytherin found themselves with a natural rivalry with Gryffindor Quidditch team. During Harry’s time at Hogwarts, Gryffindor succeeded in winning the Quidditch cup nearly every year. This fueled Slytherin’s hatred to the point where they made a malicious chant about Ron Weasley. Sadly, this isn’t the NFL and unsportsmanlike conduct yields no penalty.
How Slytherin Can Fix Their PR Problem
1. Pitch a story about a Slytherin community service initiative to the Daily Prophet
Every British witch and wizard reads the Daily Prophet. A positive story about Slytherin being placed in the Daily Prophet could be the key to turning around their reputation.
2. Be a good sport at Quidditch matches
No more chants about Gryffindor’s players or other unsportsmanlike conduct and Slytherin will be on their way to repairing their relationship with the other Hogwarts houses. This is a very important step as PR begins at the root of personal relationships.
3. Accept “mudbloods” as your own
Discriminating against others is the ultimate PR nightmare. Not only is it just downright wrong, but it eliminates all hope to have a relationship with that portion of the population. After all, Voldemort and Professor Snape are both “half-bloods.” Let’s just adopt the terms Muggle and Witch/Wizard when discussing someone’s ancestry.
If Slytherin is hiring, I would love to run their social media.
Gentry Bennett is a Junior studying Strategic Communications with an Outdoor Recreation specialization and a Social Media Certificate. Follow her on Twitter @Gen_andTonic!