Tide Hop, Oct. 1972

Tide Hop, Oct. 1972

Photo Illustration / Kylie Cowden

Rebecca Rakowitz

And back to the ’70s we go! For this week’s Tide Hop we will hippity hop our way back to the Oct. 9, 1972 issue of The Crimson White.

Student sit-in: On Oct. 5, 1972, approximately 40 students staged a brief sit-in on the second floor of the Rose Administration building. This was the front page story that ran on Oct. 9 with the headline, “Students dump trash on 2nd floor Rose as protest of strike.” It was accompanied by a picture of students sitting in front of the president’s office, surrounded by trash.

Students were holding the sit-in in support of UA maintenance employees who were on strike. According to an article from an earlier issue, some employees had been making “$1.60 for 20 years.”

The strike was surrounded by controversy, as the Supreme Court of Alabama upheld a ruling that the strike was illegal and the University put pressure on workers to come back to work or lose their jobs.

Students, most of whom were members of the Afro-American Association, “rushed to the second floor, scattering garbage and trash they found in containers in the hall” and held a sit in when University President David Mathews’ left for lunch. 

They then left notes under Mathews’ locked door, saying they would like to meet with him concerning the strike.

Students met with Mathews the following day, and said he “wouldn’t make definite statements about anything.”

A reportedly instrumental coordinator in the student effort, Allen Tullos said student support “is essential,” when it comes to affecting change for these workers.

“By getting student support we can shortcut the whole legal process, the University is afraid of students. They’d much rather have us around conference tables than out organizing the sort of things that we’re doing.”

Though this article was released 44 years ago, it could have just as easily been from this week.

On Monday, a group of students had a sit-in in Rose Administration where they brought three demands to University President Stuart Bell.

The first demand said all people on campus, regardless of affiliation, should have to abide by the Capstone Creed, a nod at the planned appearance of Milo Yiannopolous on campus. 

The second said the University should either rescind the funds ($6,955.20) they gave to the Alabama College Republicans to host Yiannopolous or give the same amount of money to all other SOURCE-registered organizations by the end of the year. 

The third was in regards to the suspension of Ryan Parish and demanded the University adjust the Student Code of Conduct “to reflect that hate speech and death threats may be punished by automatic expulsion.” 

Drinking news: Despite high student hopes, The Crimson White reported that the new student Union would not be selling beer. Rumors had been spreading that three beer manufacturers – Busch, Miller and Schlitz –  had agreed to build the new student Union if they would be allowed to sell their product.

Melford Espey, the then Union Director said alcohol could not be sold at the Union because of both city ordinances and state codes that prohibited such sales.

“[Espey] added that the laws could be changed if enough young people registered to vote,” the article said. “Then when the opportunity arose, they could have the chance to vote for a law more favorable to their desires.”