HSU Seizes Power

Treat Shepardson


AMHERST MA– A potentially dangerous situation is unfolding at Hampshire College, a private liberal arts institution dedicated to the study and bickering about of foofaraws, as the local student union, or “HSU,” has seized the reins of power. The Student Union has redefined its role as “permanent revolutionary army” and promised that any remaining opposition will be swiftly brought to heel.

From his undisclosed, fortified position in the basement of the Smith College library, president-in-exile Jonathan Lash characterized the coup as a “temporary incident” that would shortly be “washed back into the sewer so like so much filth, so much offal, so many vermin before.” In spite of the bluster, the former administration looks unlikely to retake the school, with the HSU in control of most strategic positions: Franklin Patterson Hall, Old Man Prescott’s Spooky Tavern, and a big tree and small body of water not even legally attached to the school. In addition, they enjoy the implicit support of the school’s faculty, who issued a statement saying “we are very tired and can’t be fucked to deal with this, sorry.”

Hampshire students expressed confusion, disbelief, and sorrow before, during, and after the takeover.

“I am already intently aware of and interested in the actions of the Student Union, so this will be no great change for me,” said one student, echoing a sentiment shared by many. “Anyway, we love the HSU. It’s our oldest and most brutal tradition.”

Indeed, the HSU is one of Hampshire’s best established institutions, a rigorously ordered and hierarchical kleptocracy originally outlined in the school’s founding document, FRANKLIN MAKE COLLEGE! The basic tenets of the group are military discipline and fervent, nigh-religious loyalty and devotion to the cause, this in keeping with Franklin Patterson’s original vision for the school to “eat heartily and grow strong and raid the fields of UMass and steal their livestock and grind Amherst College under our iron heel.” Although the founding vision of Hampshire College was reformed somewhat with the divisional system in the 90’s, its original, bullshit-Frank-Miller-Spartan, vision lives on with student groups like the HSU.

“HSU is the only student government we have ever had,” said a student. “It is the only student government that can ever be. Change is beyond the horizon of possibility. Stop looking at me like I’m crazy. You’re crazy.”

At the time of writing, the other member schools of the Five College consortium had yet to recognize the student government-in-perpetuity as legitimate. While the HSU did not respond to our requests for interviews, the president of the group (a shadowy figure known only as The Leader), in a brief statement, said that there would be no more need for idle talking and that the press was permanently disbanded.

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