The following piece is satire and should not be misconstrued for actual reporting. Any resemblance to a student, staff or faculty member is coincidental.
American University officially installed its latest security system, called Eagle Light. This will replace the current blue light system, as the emergency lights will summon a giant eagle rather than campus police. The new system was installed after an estimated $2 million increase in this year’s police budget.
In addition to funding the new system, the University claims that about half of the increased budget will go towards establishing breeding programs and creating high-grade avian steroids.
Eagle expert Dos Trained-Professional oversees the research department, scouting potential eagles for the newly established S.I.L.L.E., or Serious Intelligent Levelheaded Loving Eagles, the group of eagles tasked with responding to emergency calls.
“These guys? Top of the line,” Trained-Professional said. “To get them to be hardened warriors, we kidnap them from their families at a young age to be molded correctly, but old enough to remember the trauma and be motivated by the false pretenses of reuniting with their loved ones again. We’re never letting them go.”
Some of the eagles already placed on duty have voiced concerns but remain confident in their decision.
“I used to say to my folks, ‘I wanna be a superhero when I grow up.’ They always laughed at me,” S.I.L.L.E. Eagle Officer Haliaeetus Leucocephalus said. “This was, of course, before I was scouted by recruiters when I was the quarterback for my school, High School for Birds. Some colleges offered me a full ride to play for them, but I had a higher calling. After that, I got a sack placed over my head and next thing you know, I’m training to become a super soldier. It’s been a real dream come true. I really hope to see my family again soon, so I can rub it in their faces.”
Since Leucocephalus’ interview last Thursday, he has been placed on paid suspension for severely mauling a student’s eye. The incident occurred after the student drunkenly placed their hand on the emergency button. The Seagle has reached out for the student’s comment, but they declined because their vocal cords were severely damaged in the accident.
No official review has been conducted on S.I.L.L.E., and since Leucocephalus’ suspension, more eagles have been assigned, each with bigger wing spans, sharper talons and shorter life spans.
In the eyes of the administration, appreciation for the eagles’ brute strength and quick action outweighs students' concerns. One student felt especially grateful after their experience with the S.I.L.L.E. Eagles.
“After basically being left in the cold by Title IX and campus police for three weeks, I felt hopeless, always living in fear of what my crazy neighbor would do to me,” said the anonymous student. “But then I just pulled aside a S.I.L.L.E. Eagle, fed him some seeds and he immediately went into action. I told him the run-down, and I haven’t been bothered by my neighbor since.”
Giant eagles are now a common sight, spotted perching over ledges and conducting flight exercises where they circle around the sun pretending to stalk anyone lying down in the quad as if they are prey. Their brute tactics prove effective: since their establishment, crime and violence on campus have decreased by 75 percent.
Not all members of the bird community are pleased by the success and popularity of Eagle Light. Members have criticized the blatant discrimination and bias for eagles, claiming a decrease in job opportunities for other birds.
“It’s not only eagles who need to save up money and food for migration,” said DMV resident Jealous Talking Raven Sr. “The rest of us are scrounging for bread crumbs, mulch and worms, which is already difficult because we live in a city. The unemployment rate of birds is already skyrocketing, and we’ve got kids joining gangs and parents coming up short-handed on the rent. We have to worry about steroid super-soldier eagles, who might go rogue and become hardened vigilantes, terrorizing our streets. And it’s all because a fancy-schmancy school wants to keep up their aesthetic and only hire birds that match their mascot.”
There are no signs of declining productivity in the eagle training facilities. It is estimated that approximately 50 more S.I.L.L.E. soldiers will be released by next semester.
“They used to breed warriors like this all the time in the old days,” said Trained-Professional. “This is the new age of Avian Spartans.”
Jasmine Shi is a first-year student in the School of Communication and a satire columnist at The Eagle.
This article was edited by Nora Sullivan, Alexis Bernstein and Nina Heller. Copy editing was done by Isabelle Kravis, Natasha LaChac and Leta Lattin