Friday, May 12, 2006

The Breakthrough

Today is a day that I will never forget. Earlier today, Joe, Tom and I met with the administrators of Loyola Academy and made our formal proposal. In a meeting that lasted for almost two hours, the future of Coca Cola in Loyola Academy had been decided.

Along with the signed petitions, Joe, Tom and I entered the meeting with a twenty four page formal proposal, which included articles, press releases, summaries of the campaign, lists of active universities, and our suggested resolutions. As we spoke with the administrators, the conversation began to change from us making our case, to discussing how to go about taking the next step in the campaign. As a Jesuit institution founded upon principles of Catholic Social Teaching, everyone in the meeting, administrators and students alike, agreed that Loyola needs to take an active role in the controversy.

The administration has officially decided to open lines of communication with the Coca Cola Corporation and begin negotiations. Depending upon the response of the Coca Cola representatives, the administration has declared that the termination of the contract with Coca Cola is a viable option. Also, after evaluating the sales of Coca Cola in the cafeteria and considering the monopoly which Coca Cola has upon the fountain drinks, the administration has decided that the pricing and menu of the cafeteria shall be changed in order to accommodate students not willing to purchase a Coca Cola product.

Although this may seem like a victory in the campaign, I feel it is important to recognize that there is still much that must be done. The ultimate goal of our campaign had not been to remove Coca Cola from the Academy, but to pressure Coca Cola into allowing an independent investigation. To this day, Coca Cola shows no signs of complying. That being said, today is a day that you can take pride in both your school, and yourselves. We belong to an institution that recognizes its role in fighting injustice, and that has held true to the Jesuit ideals with which it had been founded. Without your support, demonstrated both through petitions and the drop in Coke sales, none of this could have been accomplished. On behalf of Joe, Tom, and thousands of innocent Columbian men, women and children, I thank you for your support. Stay tuned for future updates.

- Daniel Wozniczka
Class of 2006


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