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When Character Stands Tall, Suing the Government Just to Sell Soup and The 1946 Battle of Alcatraz

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb
The Truth Network Radio
June 28, 2022 3:00 am

When Character Stands Tall, Suing the Government Just to Sell Soup and The 1946 Battle of Alcatraz

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb

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June 28, 2022 3:00 am

On this episode of Our American Stories, Eric Motley shares his experience joining an all-white fraternity. Danielle Mickelson's business 'Mickelson Tiny Plants' was expanding and bringing fresh homemade food to the people of Rolla, North Dakota...but the state health department had other ideas. The History Guy shares the story about an escape attempt in the infamous Alcatraz Federal penitentiary in San Francisco, California, that led to a standoff.

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Time Codes:

00:00 - When Character Stands Tall

10:00 - Suing the Government Just to Sell Soup

35:00 - The 1946 Battle of Alcatraz

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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Eric you talk about how one of the most difficult stories happened while you were at Samford University involving your pledging in a fraternity was a moment that display both the best and the worst in people.

Tell us about that. I was too nave to really know what a fraternity was.

I arrived Samford was predominantly a white university. Inasmuch as the majority of the students here were people not of color. Maybe there was four or 5% of of us colored population, people of color that's minorities, Hispanic and African Americans and Bud Light. I was in a wonderful Christian community and people embraced me and they seemed to be interested in me as much as I was interested in them and for sure, maybe I was a bit eccentric and I was so intense on getting an education that everyone in that university knew that I was the first in the library in the morning and the last to leave the library and that became a bit of a joke but a wonderful joke and endearing joke. And then there were group of upperclassmen who became friends and they encouraged me to go through rush because they thought it was a wonderful opportunity for me to meet more people to be a part of our club that they were part of to experience something they felt the filling and so I went to this experience with this fraternity and I felt really good about the people that I've met in their encouragement, but unbeknownst to me. Underneath all of this. There were parents who were greatly disturbed by the concept of this fraternity being integrated, let alone at Samford but in the state of Alabama because it had yet to be integrated in Alabama and so those parents and parents have wonderful influence as well as often times of not so great influence on us greatly express your concerns to their kids in and encourage them to opposing and to make a very long story short but interesting on the very night that a vote was to be taken. I was going to be blackballed and there were group of students would organize themselves and their arguments around all the reasons that I should not be a member of this fraternity and they were not really sound reasons and one student found a group of them singing a song using not so great lyrics or words that are not greater words were told not to use now about people of color and that student in a group of other students did what they believed was right there were group of about six or seven students who'd gone to the final four in Atlanta, Georgia and someone wrote them. Call them and said it doesn't look like it's going to be promising for Eric and I know that you wanted to be here for the vote and that you're gonna get here at the end of the meeting, but it might require your getting here soon as possible and they left the final four. Could you believe that these college seniors leaving the final four basketball competitions and driving some 5 to 6 hours back to Birmingham in order to be a fraternity meeting at the start of it so they could address their fellow fraternity members and they challenge them and they said you know the reasons that your given are not the reasons why, and we are aware that a good number of your parents have reached out to others to encourage them to vote against Eric, but there is no way that we can graduate after four years of being here, and after the experience of getting to know this guy and not believing in doing what is right and really stepping up and to me it's a wonderful reminder that from time to time were all called to challenge the moral complacency of the leisure and secular society that were all called to do what's right in that same letter that we reference about Martin Luther King. There's a line that disturbs me.

He said it's it's not the people who are overtly doing wrong.

It is the deafening silence of the good people that disturbed me most in and that one moment the 78 young man decided that they would take off their fraternity pans and lay them on a table in the say that we feel so strongly about doing what is right that were willing to give up our membership in this group and in that one quiet unheralded at they influenced all of the members of that fraternity save one to vote for my membership, not what is beautiful and profound about that story is not just that unheralded activity rose but the fact that I did not learn until I moved here to Washington DC so that from 1996 to 2001 I did not learn the narrative that took place and it took place because one friend of mine who had had too much to drink one night phoned me and ended up telling me more than he ever planned on telling me about what actually transpired and what I learned was that it the same group of students organize themselves and paid my fraternity dues for those two years. They never wanted me to know the story they never wanted me to know the names of the students who opposed me.

They only wanted me to experience the community that they believed could be realized when good people do what is right and encourage other people who are good to overcome their prejudices and that is Eric Motley and one heck of a story about so much.

Madison Park is the name of the book is filled with stories like this remarkable place a remarkable upbringing. Remarkable community, Madison Park, a place of hope.

Go to Amazon.com and get it Eric Motley story is fraternity story. Like the rest of the punches, but my goodness, what lessons learned about life and about courage here on our American stories had books view of the great American stories we tell and love America like we do for asking you to become a part of the all American stories family. If you agree that America is a good and great country. Please make a donation monthly gift of $17.76 is fast becoming a favorite option for support and allow American stories.com now and go to the donate button and help us keep the great American stories coming that's out American stories.com so touristy time-consuming and tedious daunting hands launching still overwhelmed cell if you want to get those larger laundry loads done right and get back to doing the things you enjoy.

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Danielle Michaelson's story begins in Rolla North Dakota about where I currently live.

I married my high school sweetheart. I went to university and not to be a high school English teacher, which I immediately started doing when I graduated in 1990 so I was an English teacher for 22 years.

The entire time that I was doing raising my kids. I always gardening in my life. My grandmother was a gardener. My mom and dad were gardeners.

I just seemed like the thing people dead know you had to have a garden you had to produce your own food you have to save it for the winter. You have to course cook homemade meals so we were always food producers. The producers just for our family. 2014. I was still teaching and still gardening my who were 14 and 12 wanted to make a little money to go visit their grandparents who live in Las Vegas in the wintertime I told them they could sell all of our extra vegetables that we set up a card table and bolts from my kitchen and saw green beans and potatoes and onions and they made $72 and they were beyond excited at how great they were and over the course the next few years, we grew our tables grew our tents grow started handing everything from pickles to salt to jams and jellies and it became an intense passion grow this business became a passion all my heart needed to be in gardening and not in a classroom anymore and that was the year that I decided that was the last time that I would leave my garden at the end of August next August. I would be there with its no longer being in the classroom. I quit teaching my world and my passion has changed and I needed to. Danielle would mean Michaelson tiny plants. Why so Michaelson tiny plants because when our kids were really little. They were tiny tiny humans and even I figure they were still little little people and we always referred to them as tiny pants come here tiny pants and feel like if you like. Every time that when I start my tiny plants growing in the spring. It's like growing your children. There's this means to this life that's coming out of the ground and it's ground that belongs to me and is nurtured by me and I watched them watch the plants grow and produce food and remember one of the years at first years I was teaching had been reading an article about food security and how people often don't have security in their life and I was standing in the middle of my garden and he realized that I was wise my food security, and I could help make it food security for my community which is important to Rolla is providing a service. Nobody else does in her city and giving people options such as healthy food is a very long distance from where the majority of vegetables are grown in a grocery store.

The average time from when a vegetable is picked till it gets to Rolla and Dakota is between 10 and 14 days. If you take a look at the science of food.

The minute you pick up fresh vegetable it starts to lose nutrients and I started thinking about you know that lots of nutrients. By the time he gets to the grocery store and how could provide to our community.

Food that had been picked literally the day before. You know, we also have a practice that we believe in no waste and we just decided to start using our what we were growing products little bit longer shelf life. So some of the overage goes into jars and we just started putting a few out on a night on the table with our vegetables and realized that we had a following were coming back and asking for more meat. 1950 jars last year until pickles and from there we started looking at what you couldn't get in Rolla North Dakota. One thing was sourdough bread.

No way to get fresh sourdough bread. We don't even have a bakery in Rolla. We do tomato juice with spicy tomato juice and so we use our peppers and onions and jalapenos. Enter tomatoes and make a coldpressed juice that we can one day food freedom bill was passed that allowed us to start processing food into other things, otherwise known as House Bill 1433.

The cottage was passed by elected officials in the North Dakota Houston seven open the door for Daniel's business to expand even more. You see, before the bill passed. Things like pizza and French onion soup can only be sold out of somewhere with a commercial pitch. Now Danielle and others consult their own kitchens directly to their customers doing this forever right and take them over to your neighbor and give them to them and they enjoy them in your neighbor said can you make me for doesn't want them for my family and you could point out that you could give them to them. You couldn't sell them, which seems strange to me that cottage food law actually freed as long as the transaction is person-to-person. As long as the producer of the food is handing the food to the consumer and the consumer can question product and decide if they trust you inherently.

That's what the small business is about right friendships and trust that you can sell really made a huge difference for people who wanted to try starting a small business know the bullet and putting in $100,000 commercial kitchen because you think you might be good at something is a little scary but you can actually do a test market your own test market. Now you can try selling things.

I know that some people are going to love my dill pickles. My family loves him does not mean that everyone who tries them actually will come back to buy more. We didn't know, and so is our business grew. That was a big deal allowed for people to start to expand and for exactly what it meant grew so I quit teaching in June 2017 and the cottage.

In August 2017 so it was just this man's excitement that when I entrance you know when I quit teaching, small food producer. This was like another door opened in front of me again and I could just envision where my business could go.

It was just that it was a reason reinforcing my decision to be a small food producer and businesswoman, it was like the stars aligned right.

I quit teaching I put all my energy into this magical door opened and I could use all my creativity and all my planning and thoughts to grow my business literally straightforward, at least that's what Daniel thought would happen with the new law in place didn't expect the face of lawlessness from her own government. And you know Michaelson told the story of her own freedom to pursue her passion turned out that passion was in the garden when we come back more of the story. Rolla, North Dakota, Daniel Michaelson stored freedom story of watched on our American story chores can be time-consuming and tedious laundry still overwhelming, so if you want to get those larger laundry loads done right and get back to doing the things you enjoy.

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We continue with stories in the story of Daniel Michaelson last left off. Daniel was growing the business was once a man is helping him by the passage of the cottage, smooth sailing last much longer. Continue with your store.

Everything seemed to be going well for Daniel Michaelson North Dakota Department of Health.

Other ideas and try to get rid of the cottage which allowed Daniel to sell food she otherwise could meeting it was a whirlwind even sure how this could possibly be happening that the health department decided that they were worried about the safety of these foods even though there was no foodborne illness in farmers market produce cottage foods produced foods since the passing of the law and they tried to have the locks changed and they failed. They failed because the North Dakota legislature used to make the changes to the law, but the help wanted, but after this the health department anyways which is a violation of the rule of law because administrative bodies can't pass laws on their own.

They can only carry out laws, but the legislature passed to stop selling my soup.

I suddenly had to put all of my ideas on hold and I was just shocked.

I was shocked that this is where we got because like I said I was elated with what could come and then it was just stopped dead over this fear for food safety and faulting them for that. One thing I stressed over and over again is when you buy a jar of salsa for me or you by quart of soup from me.

Actually take what I feed my family from the exact same supply and I am going to be above and beyond careful about what I am providing to people for sale because that's the exact same food that I'm feeding my family and cottage food producers feel.

Also, business model is you make one person thinking your business is done so small business can't ride out in E. coli outbreak on romaine like across the nation. Small business has to be on top of their game and specific in particular and perfect at all times. We were surprised when these rules came out because we felt like we were. We were the best of the best right and suddenly were the ones that are suffering under the administrative rules. It almost makes you feel like you're not intelligent enough to know better that my customers were just heartbroken that they couldn't get the soup that they had learned to depend on and are so funny because all the people that live in my community are they all have the ability to cook and cook well but French soup takes a very long time to caramelize all those onions and they always like to say you know I could make this myself but I'd much rather you did it because yours is so good that I don't have to do all the work and they come to market and they want to buy soup and I have to say I'm sorry but the health department made rules and I can't tell you soup anymore. And the crazy part is if you are if you are, you know, an English teacher from the town of 1400.

You know what you can do to fight no clue. I didn't have the resources to hire an attorney to fight sure what the fight would be and for the most part you know were just rule following law lighting. He people and we don't get put in places where were suddenly fighting against administrative rules I'd never even heard that term before.

I'll probably when I was in high school but never thought about it since high school. I didn't even know what to do and that's why said not a business statement and in my and my hopes and dreams sort of died for a second. I just cannot go down and went back to work. I guess we'll just sell fresh vegetables and the things that we can bacon and can give up soup and that's just how it will go sort of resign yourself and terrible thing to say about what happened to me. Thankfully she would be approached by the Institute for Justice public interest law firm that stands up for Americans when the rights are violated no cost to people like Danielle so thankful for the Institute for justice because I didn't even know we could find it and suddenly they showed up you elective your knight in shining armor and there like we can help you and like you gotta be kidding me like no we can help you. You just have to be willing to stand up and be the plaintiff in the case and here we go.

They explained to me that it was unconstitutional and I have even thought of it on that level what they did unilaterally with the administrative rules was circumvent what the entire house and Senate know they had spoken were not changing the law. They circumvented the higher process when they had already voted it down. There was also a second violation of the rule of law, the North Dakota Constitution states that people have to be treated equally under the law, but the rules printed by the health department didn't do that. You see, the regulations allow farmers to sell uninspected raw poultry banning a home-cooked Danielle from selling chicken noodle soup that makes no sense. It's completely arbitrary and thankfully the court sought that way to enroll in Daniel's favor they want and we just got this email that you when your case and that it was over and all of a sudden my brain just spun thinking about all of the way open this door for me again and it was time to not worry about being stopped and just barrel forward and we have new goals now and the goals are super funny super interesting are super ironic however you want to see that our next goal is to build a large-scale indoor market that will actually have a commercial kitchen and commercial kitchens will allow us to ship and so even though my flight was for cottage food which means I can cook it in my kitchen. My long-term goal gets me a commercial kitchen and then I'm on the other side crossed over, but the reality without the cottage, food, ability, I would have never been able to build my teeny tiny business that started in 2014 to a place where I'm ready to build a facility and have a commercial kitchen so maybe one more year we will be looking at building a new facility right on Main St., Wachovia now this business is going to grow like crazy and great job as always to Monty Montgomery and a special thanks to the folks at the Institute for Justice represented Daniel Michelson and represented her freedom so food on an equal playing field and also for the people of North Dakota allowed them to this kind of food and not have it blocked by people who weren't represented in the state legislature.

These rules were passed and promulgated by people with the Department of Health Department of Health doesn't have the right, North Dakota do such things but was transmitting was listening to Daniels sheer frustration that I didn't know what to do.

I didn't even know what the fight was worth what you could do about the Institute for Justice and welded what they do, which is represent mostly small businesses and rule of law and property rights story of Daniel Michelson. The story of Michelson tiny plant and about so much more particularly, the rule of law on L Americans doing chores can be time-consuming and tedious. And there's nothing more daunting piles of laundry still overwhelmed so if you want to get those larger laundry loads done right and get back to doing the things you enjoy.

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It's true. I had one night and I took minor attack ODT and I was present and had an amazing time.

Here's a little glimpse of our conversation with some of our closest friends. This episode was brought to you by near attack ODT were magic pants 75 mg life with migraine attacks can be missing out on big moments with friends and family, but thankfully no attack ODT were magic pant 75 mg is the only medication that is proven to treat a migraine attack and prevent episodic migraines and adults sell lively events like window tango don't have to be next Medicare coverage decisions for next year and United healthcare can help you feel competent about your choices for those eligible Medicare annual enrollment runs from October 15 through December 7. If you're working past age 65. You might be able to delay Medicare enrollment. Depending on your employer coverage. It can seem confusing, but it doesn't have to be UHC Medicare health plans.com to learn more United healthcare helping people live healthier lives. We continue with our American stories and up next comes a man who simply known as the history God's videos watched by hundreds of thousands of people of all ages on YouTube. You guys also heard your and our American stories and history. God shares a story about an escape attempt and the infamous Alcatraz federal penitentiary in San Francisco California led to a standoff penitentiary.

The inmates call the rock was supposed to be escape proof not keep some Christmas trying. There's a history God the story of the 1946 Battle of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay was opened in 1934 to house America's most dangerous criminals.

I once read by shark infested waters. The present was considered to be escape proof that keep the prisoners from attempting to escape from the infamous prison that was most often called simply the rock. There were 14 escape attempts in the 29 years of the present was in operation and among those one was particularly notable both for its daring and for its violence. The 1946 Battle of Alcatraz deserves to be remembered 46-year-old Bernard Barney court had been convicted by a federal jury for robbing the bank of New Haven, Kentucky, 37 cousin told her gunpoint was auto shock made up of $2175 sentenced to 25 years. He was transferred from nonetheless Cory by 1946 the position of so house poorly prison janitor position that allowed him relative access around the present from that position. Observed lapses in the security of the present he thought he could exploit. And he became the language group determined to escape escape proof court had a plan to overwhelm one gardening access to weapons locker. He needed help to overwhelm another guard we thought would have the keys that he needed to escape. It was a daring plan required more mess is list of accomplices started with 33-year-old Marvin Franklin Humbert Alcatraz was a kitchen light cleanup in the prison kitchen with him a crucial part of Corey's point McCoy figured that he would also need some muscle for his work, and so he recruited some other prisoners to his .29-year-old Maren Bundy Thompson was an armed robber who showed skill of getting caught escaping 45 he was arrested by the Amarillo Texas police detective shot the detective Clarence Carnes was just 19 years old, youngest made in Alcatraz Choctaw from Oklahoma. He was known as the Choctaw kit given a life sentence. Adjust the 16 garage told 35-year-old Dutch pressure is first into prison at the age of 16 in the 1930s been part of getting the West Coast bank robbers Colby Crutcher Kyle Spock is number four most wanted list. Crutcher then demanded that another prisoner is included 37-year-old Sam shockwave and sentenced to life imprisonment for bankruptcy sent to the federal potentially at Leavenworth. He was like you just 54 violent outbursts and unstable personnel) start with guard for birth control and gun platform that overlooked the C&D blocks was armed with a rifle 45 caliber pistol, but Burchett routine so precise it could be taught to see Bob for a few minutes at specific times of angled medieval. That meant that there were a few minutes when Seahawk was not observed. A far spreader device that would push two bars apart fraternity screw requires his plan was to use the time when virtually to diva to strip off his clothes should be at the bars use the bars better to make a gift big enough to slip through and wailing birches again that you picking his guns and getting access to the block to release his co-conspirators could have been starving himself for weeks in order make it easier to slip the bars also needed to wheelie guard William Miller watch the C block door because Miller had a key to the prison yard by prison rules. He wasn't supposed to keep the key passage to the garden. The gun kicked every time he used that was intended to make it impossible for the prisoners to take the key to the yard exactly what going to do. McCoy noticed that Miller often did not follow the rule keeping the keylock of the lid of the kitchen staff without disturbing the Dell regard during lunch as Hubbard worked in the kitchen or power Miller kitchen is getting the key. The court would allow them to escape the yard and get to the present dock where Walker hijacked about the kids applies to the prison make their escape. It was a convoluted plan and what could go wrong, but men serving life sentences are desperate. They made the move.

On May 2 46 I was in the main block sweeping up window will open the door to let Hubbard out finishes. Kitchen duties McCoy jumped Miller coming over the head.

Miller had no God but he did have a Billy Billy club could also dispense teargas through Miller self then hurried toward its the bars but requires when virtually his normal trip to diva managed to strip down shimmy of the bars and use the bars better to make a gift. One of the gun down quintet porch immediately open the door prize but was quickly subdued. The rifle from his hands up, you unconscious with the plan was working so far. Court went along to the gun gallery to D block in front guard Cecil Corbett with his rifle divorce: to open the door to the main block but in Carnes Hubbard and Chris are then open the doors of Thompson and chocolate.

Other prisoners were also released, but they wisely started to say in their cells. Prisoners were convinced that this reply was working, but in fact it was already due Gerd Miller had figured out what they wanted to slip the key to the cellular off the ring.

The gang had no way to get out of the cell escape attempt had failed now was a hostage situation solely wailing other guards as they came in for regular duties, or was it to check on the other missing guard. Eventually they had nine guards stashed into cells. Prison authorities were now well aware what was going on.

The group decided that there was no means were escape they would go down five groups started hard with regard to the way what one of the officers told they had no chance of escape and would die if they tried. Crutcher told the guard would die as well. Shot into the cell and chocolate yield kill all the hostages saying they wouldn't have anyone to testify against them. Crutcher emptied the 45 into the two cells, six of the officers were injured officer Bill Miller with the regards point that were terrified the question would come in and finish the job but he walked away desperately one of the guardsmen just write the names of the six prisoners involved on a cell wall work James Johnson's in a large force in the afternoon to drive the prisoners back to rescue the hostages but a second guard Stiles was killed were no shut off the power to the block, which was red with floodlights and wailing sirens Burchett teargas of the windows to get them and pin down Carnes Shockley and Thompson decided the jig was up with their cells and their involvement would be missed but coy Hubbard and Crutcher decided to fight to the death.

Then Johnson took up a notch called in the United States Marine Corps. The Marines use tactics to go to the Pacific against Japanese soldiers and bunkers drilling holes in the roof and dropping integrity struggle prisoners to spot with the could be captured three boxes of rifle 50 later three prisoners on the phone and called terms for surrender. Johnson told him that the only terms would be to throw the guns give up when guard peaked in to see block they shot that was her answer to the warden's demand for surrender guardsmen a dozen shots into the utility corridor with three were thought to be high.

In response, three shots were the last shots of the battle of Alcatraz coy Hubbard and Crutcher chosen suicide over In an odd twist. Marvin Hubbard had filed an appeal to his convictions in the hearing for that appeal was held. The Monday after he committed suicide, the prosecutor, the case said that Hubbard had a fair chance that his conviction would be overturned. Carnes Carnes, Maren Thompson and Sam Shockley to go back to their cells, hoping to remain anonymous hope was that Crutcher had killed the hostages who could identify them as been part of the attempt, but all but one of the hostages that survive Thompson Shockley were executed in the gas chamber of nearby student Quinton prison December 3 48. The judge found sympathy for Clarence Carnes owing to his age and the fact that the hostages reported that at one point he refused an order by creditor to his death sentence was commuted but the license was added to his term. Despite that, he did manage to eventually release in 1973 but couldn't make it on the outside and buy with the terms of his parole. He died in 1988 in the federal penitentiary in Springfield, Missouri, Alcatraz prison would see several more escape attempts including the famous incident in June 1962 prisoners Frank Morris and brothers John and Clarence Anglin escaped and were never found Alcatraz federal century closed March 21 63. Billings was only robbing all the exposure to the salt air was too expensive to repair what was already the most expensive prison in the federal system to operate the former prisoner was turned into a tourist attraction today, more than 1 million visitors, and great job as always by Greg Pegler thanks regard for regular featured contributor here on our American stories story of the 1946 battle of Alcatraz on our American stores


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