In Defence of the Union

We should give The Union more credit than it gets.

broadsheet Cambridge Union Society controversy Daily Mail dominique strauss kahn dsk editorial enthusiasm Fit College headlines julian assange kieran corcoran money The Union Union Varsity

If any of you glance at today’s Varsity editorial while easing its transition from p’lodge to landfill, you’ll find shy apologetics for Varsity being in national papers, and a snobbish attack on The Union for the same.

After backpedalling for accidentally telling the Daily Mail that we’re all drug-pushers, the Union gets a drubbing for “mainstream, tabloid choices” of speaker.

How many of us would pay £120 to be part of an alternative, broadsheet Union?

As a student body we plough huge amounts of money and enthusiasm into a society that constantly delivers. A society with elected leaders, a society that gives us cheap booze and entertainment.

I’m not a dedicated attendee, but in my three years I’ve seen ex-PMs, been shouted at by Brian Blessed, heard the inside story on Wikileaks from Julian Assange, and got close enough to Jordan to smell her delicious perfume. And next week I’m going to listen to DSK because the Union are a big enough deal for him to want to come, for free.

We’ve heard the for and against enough times. Almost a thousand of you had your say in our poll. For all the cries of controversy, this was far less closely-fought than most Fit Colleges, with a stonking 700 of you backing The Union.

This won’t be the last time an invite gets a fervent reaction. With the clout members have given their Union year-on-year for almost two centuries, it can do some bold things, and backlashes are inevitable.

In a week’s time the chamber will be full – the perfect and only sign of a job well done. The Union have a knack for knowing what people want and providing – it’s the heart of their success and they should keep at it.

I presume the title ‘How To Create a Headline’ originally had a question-mark, ineptly subbed away. The only difference their bright yellow box highlighted is the way one Cambridge institution knows exactly how to capture our imaginations, and one hasn’t a clue.

Oh, and if any of you are keen on actually learning how to create a headline – click here.