The 1970s saw feminists travelling to Belfast in Northern Ireland and returning home with contraceptives, risking arrest for importing illegal products. They were met by protestors upon their arrival home.
Illegal in the Republic in all circumstances until 1980, a new law allowed some contraception to be dispensed by a pharmacist to people with a doctor’s prescription.
This highly restrictive law was finally changed five years later, despite conservative opposition.
At 10:25am on the 2nd of August, 1980 Central Station in Bologna, Italy was bombed. Eight-five people were killed and more than two-hundred injured.
Members of the Italian neo-fascist group Nuclei Armati Rivoluzionari were convicted of the crime. However, not only have they never claimed responsibility for the bombing, but significant misinformation was spread by various sources, meaning the conviction is still questioned by some.
The 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics opened on the 28th of July. The event was heavily boycotted by Eastern Bloc countries including the Soviet Union, in response to the West’s boycott of the 1980 Moscow Games.
Los Angeles and Tehran were the only two cities to express an interest in hosting the event, but because of Iran’s political situation, and then the fact it was another country that chose to boycott, Los Angeles became the hosts of the Games by default.
The Olympics were officially opened by US President Ronald Reagan.
Born on the 1st of June, 1960, Soviet gymnast Elena Mukhina was a three-time World Champion in 1978. She was considered the USSR’s best chance to ‘save’ them from being beaten by Romania at the 1980 Moscow Olympics. Though injured, she was forced back into training, where she broke her spine two weeks before the Olympics, becoming an instant quadriplegic.
Due to the secretive attitude of communist Russia, Mukhina disappeared from international competition for some time before her condition came to be known outside of the Soviet Union. At first the authorities tried to blame the accident on her own poor judgement.
Mukhina later said that her first thought when she broke her spine was: “Thank God, I won’t be going to the Olympics.”
She eventually died of complications related to her accident.
Here are the four routines Mukhina performed to become All Around World Champion in 1978: