Tide Hop, Sept. 1980

Tide Hop, Sept. 1980

Photo Illustration / Kylie Cowden

Rebecca Rakowitz

This week’s Tide Hop takes a pit stop in the great-y eighties, as we focus on the Sept. 17 issue from 1980. 

Celebrity Appearances: Thirty-six years ago, long before he was the vice president of the United States, Senator Joe Biden was set to speak at The University of Alabama. Though that story would now make front-page news, in 1980, the then senator from Delaware, was merely given a seven-sentence article that was haphazardly placed in the center of page three.

According to the story, Biden would be speaking at 8 p.m. that night, Sept. 17, in the Ferguson Ballroom about “The Political Outlook in the 1980s.” 

Health News: Close your eyes and imagine you’re reading a Crimson White article that starts with, “Close your eyes and imagine you’re blind.” The shaky intro may leave you skeptical, but the extensive feature story details the process of donating your eyes to help the blind and visually impaired.

The story focused on the work of The Alabama Lions Eye Bank in Birmingham that facilitates the donations. It said that the bank was formed in 1970 in cooperation with the Alabama Sight Conservation Association and that transplants were done at centers all over the state.

Featured in the article were accounts of a Mountain Brook High School teacher who had a successful corneal transplant in one eye and was waiting for another, as the body can’t accept two new eyes at one time, and of a UA student, Robin Guice, who decided she wanted to donate her eyes.

“I just felt that my eyes wouldn’t be of any use to me after I was dead, and I think being blind would be awful, so I signed a donor card after I’d thought it out,” Guice said. “My parents flipped, but they’ve finally accepted it.”

Editorials: One editorial in the Sept. 17, 1980 issue sounds similar to many collegiate opinion columns written today. It called on the University to fulfill obligations that the student body felt it should.

A Tuscaloosa fireman had allegedly indecently exposed himself in front of residents of Tutwiler Hall. Students took issue when the University decided it would not assist in the “exoneration, or prosecution of the fireman who allegedly committed the crime.”

The editorial called on the University to fulfill its obligation of enforcing the laws on campus.

“Our university is a traditional campus university…a city in miniature,” the editorial said. “…We expect the University to fulfill most of the obligations a city government must fulfill, and rightly so.”

Sports:  During this week 36 years ago, the Crimson Tide was preparing to play the Ole Miss rebels as well. The headline on the article was “Rebels’ offense could scare anyone.” 

With Chad Kelley leading one of the SEC’s fiercest offenses against the Tide in Oxford this weekend, it seems like hardly much has changed.