EDITORIAL: Loquitur in retrospect: What have we accomplished?

By Lauren Reilly
March 31, 2005

The Preamble to the Code of Ethics of the Society of Professional Journalists states that, “public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy. The duty of the journalist is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues.”

And seek the truth we did.

After eight long months, it is time for the 2004-2005 Loquitur editorial staff to pass along the torch to our successors. While the new editors begin their journalistic adventures, we looked back on this past year and, for a change, asked ourselves some questions.

Did we educate the college community effectively?

After a hectic school year, the coverage of events and campus issues extended from one extreme to another-from election news to parking problems and the Nazi rally in Valley Forge Park to housing matters, Loquitur has reported on topics of relevance to students both on and off campus.

It is also safe to say that this year’s editorial staff pushed the limits of expression-regardless of the topic and its degree of controversy, we had questions and we found answers. We asked the students to ‘help’ us out and they gave us drugs; we questioned student safety on campus and were provided with more effective lighting as well as emergency call stations throughout campus; we asked the students why they did not vote and they created politically affiliated clubs.

Did we accurately voice student concerns?

Although the cooperation among the college community has been responsive, the editors discovered a progressive change towards silence.

We inquired supportive reasoning as to the non-renewal of John Dzik’s contract and were told that we had to “trust people for a decision that they will never understand.”

We questioned the logistics of the faculty and staff benefit cutbacks and were asked, “Is this a major student concern?”

Who answers a question with a question?

How the tables have been turned.

As previously mentioned in the Loquitur, during an interview with President Antoinette Iadarola, the validity of Loquitur’s motives’ were challenged.

More recently, Loquitur has been questioned by yet another authoritative source-the Middle States Commission. In an exit report presented to the campus, as determined during the on-site visit, the commission suggested that Loquitur become a student club opposed to it’s current standing as part of the curriculum in the English and communication department-a move that could potentially hinder the academic freedom of the students it represents.

What have we achieved?

As a student forum of expression, the editorial staff has strived to inquire, inform and involve. Have we accomplished that? Evidently. After all, look who is beginning to ask the questions.

Posted to the web by Shawn Rice

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Lauren Reilly

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