**Disclaimer: Duke was recently implicated in an anti-trust lawsuit, along with 14 top U.S. Universities and Notre Dame. For more info on the bust that you can trust, read The Chronicle’s coverage of the story. Because of the serious nature of these allegations, all names and pronouns have been neutered and spayed and theyed to preserve anonymity. In order to stay on daddy Duke’s good side, the dozens of freelance editors they had to hire to rein me in have left myriad notes throughout the article to prevent wrongthink. (Editor’s Note: Do NOT Google “How to Join a Union”).**
In a closed door dinner served on handmade China made in the year 1882 (Editor’s Note: Do NOT Google “China” and that year together) and served by the oldest man you’ve ever seen, like so old it makes you wonder how little Duke pays him that he can’t be retired by now, like so old that his hands are shaking when he puts the plate down, and you’re like, damn, it is kind of cold in here, but it’s definitely not that cold.
Where were we?
In a closed door dinner served on Vincent Price’s estate (Editor’s Note: Do NOT Google “Blake Lively Estate Wedding”), the Duke University president addressed a room full of the oldest, whitest, and richest cheeses while pretending not to notice the angry mob of tax-dodging sycophants. According to Chronicle sources, the crowd was loud and did their best to get his attention by placing a log in the middle of a river on a sunny day, but fortunately Price is very adept at ignoring angry masses of people. That is, unless they have money.
“I hope it is clear to you given our lack of a response to this scandal that we are in no way proud of what we’ve done here. It’s painfully clear … We should’ve taken more. We could’ve added another movie theater in Trinity, right next to the other one. We could’ve made all of the Brodhead Center glass, not just the front half. We could’ve funded a 17.7-mile light-rail line that would provide over 26,000 trips per day to residents and commuters in Durham and Chapel Hill and connect three major universities, three major medical facilities and three of the top 10 employers in the state: Duke University, UNC-Chapel Hill and UNC Health Care.” (Editor’s Note: Do NOT Google any of that sentence). But, if it can serve as any condolence, US News & World Report finally placed Duke in the top 10 list for “Schools that Steal from Poor People.””
A cacophonous clanking filled the room as pitchforks and a few of the older, frailer donors hit the floor. All of the tension instantly dissolved. They didn’t need recourse or retribution, they merely wanted an apology, like all good Democrats do. So they left.
Thanks to the diligent work of everyone under the age of 50 in the room, which was just an 18-year-old who one the donors just so happened to meet the day before he’s supposed to see his recent divorcee, this speech was filmed and released on Twitter later that night. The Chronicle reached out to the woman for comment but was unable to find a Russian translator and her ID said she was 15.
While the footage seems pretty bad, a group of administrators agreed to clear up the confusion in a series of anonymous interviews. Since we believe in transparency here, we must admit that one of the administrators requested qualified immunity. We obliged, but only after it became clear that it would have zero standing in court and they just wanted it because “isn’t it the thing that keeps people from going to prison?” (Editor’s Note: do NOT Google “qualified immunity”)
Admin #1 was very understanding of public outrage, but remained steadfastly certain that it would fade once they understood the whole story. “It’s really not what everyone is making it out to be. That’s his job. He has to serve as the spokesperson of the University when scandals arise, and not speaking on it would be a failure of his position. I mean, think about it. Every dollar we take is one more dollar that goes into a bank account that will never run dry because they started a massively profitable business after coming back from WW2 like everyone else did. (Editor’s Note: do NOT Google “did everyone benefit equally from the G.I. Bill”) Think of his kids.”
Admin #2 took a slightly more nuanced approach: “What Admin #1 said sounded wrong, but that’s what being vice president for public affairs and government relations is about. You have to serve as the spokesperson for the University when scandals arise, and not speaking on Price’s comments would be a disgrace to the school and the position. I mean, think about it … do we really need to give out more financial aid?”
After sleeping off two interviews that each only had a single publishable quotation, and that’s using a very liberal and Liberal definition of the word “publishable,” the day began with a conversation with Admin #3 and ended with all of our editors quitting. We asked Admin #3 about Price’s comments regarding the trust bust. He, I mean, they said “You can trust me to bust!”
We asked them to clarify further. They denied our request for further clarification.
Finally, our team made headway in a conversation with Admin #4. “I actually tend to side with the students here,” which is a first in Duke admin history. “This scheme is predatory and an unnecessary move to squeeze money out of people who just want to make their lives better the same way we did when we were younger: education. I just wish they didn’t call the schools the 568 Cartel. Makes us sound latino. Err, sorry, latinx.”
Unfortunately, our reporting was cut short when the rest of our team caught COVID at a basketball game.
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