Boston labor unions have launched a boycott of the Adolph Coors Co. alleging discrimination against minority groups and trade union members.
In response to the issue, at least one Harvard student group has decided to ignore the boycott call, while another group plans to endorse the unions' move.
The Law School's Pub, after a narrow 16 to 15 vote Monday on the boycott by its managing organization, the Dormitory and Students Affairs Committee (DSAC), will continue serving the popular beer.
The undergraduate organization, the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) plans to endorse the boycott but has not decided what actions it will take in support of the unions.
"We will probably be passing out petitions, getting students to boycott the beer, and working with restaurants and liquor stores to get them to stop selling Coors beer," said Evan O. Grossman '87, a member of DSA.
The Hotel and Restaurant Workers Union and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees are launching their boycott initiative this week, though the beer has been sold in the area for over a year.
Unions Blast Coors
Local union leaders said yesterday that Coors was racist and anti-labor, saying that the beer company lobbied against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and has violated the Equal Employment Opportunity Act.
"Coors denied civil rights. Coors allowed the Ku Klux Klan to meet on his property. The profit of Coors works against working men and working women in this country," said Domenic Bozzotto, President of Hotel and Restaurant Union Local 26, AFL-CIO.
Don Shook, Media Relations Specialist at Adolph Coors Co., denied the charges saying, "Coors is not anti-union, but pro-people. It's one of the most progressive companies." He said Coors endorses social and civic programs such as the National Black Economic Development Coalition and several environmental organizations.
"We're puzzled as to why the boycott continues," Shook said.
Law students in favor of the boycott expressed disappointment at DSAC's decision and said they would continue their efforts to boycott Coors beer.
"We're disappointed that DSAC could not endorse our boycott, however we do not consider them to be representative of the Harvard law student," said third-year law student Michael Dinnerstein '82 who is organizing the boycott at the Law School. "We will continue our consumer education efforts, our boycott of Coors beer, and are also considering other means of achieving an economic boycott. DSAC's endorsement is not critical to the success of the boycott."
But opponenents of the boycott said the decision to buy Coors beer should be left to individuals. "The provision of even controversial choices is a good thing," said second-year law student James Gibbons '84.
Coors beer, which only recently has been sold on the East Coast, was founded in 1873 in Golden, Co.
Bozzotto said successful boycotting in the West and Midwest has forced Coors to expand here.
"We're trying to send the message that Easterners do not approve of the Coors Company policy," Grossman said. This boycott is simply to hurt Coors economically and put them out of business, because they have been so racist, sexist, homophobic and anti-union.