Wounded Ohio Contractor: 'I'm in Disbelief'

Shooting Victim’s Workers, Firm Have Long Been Big Labor Targets

(Source: September 2011 NRTWC Newsletter)

Having grown over the course of several decades into one of the largest union-free electrical contracting businesses in the Toledo, Ohio, area, King Electrical Services and its employees are seasoned in dealing with Big Labor harassment, threats and violence.

John King started the firm during the 1970’s, after first working for a unionized electrical contractor and serving a stint in the military. In his business’s early days, Mr. King recalls, “it was nothing to have to regularly buy a new set of tires. The ice pick was the weapon of choice.”

During a mid-eighties strike, King Electrical, which then had just eight or nine employees, was picketed by more than 50 International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW/AFL-CIO) union militants. One employee had his car trashed and was also beaten up by IBEW thugs.

The harassment and violence have never stopped. Just during the first half of this year, goons hurled rocks through King Electrical’s shop-front windows, and smashed the windows and slashed the tires of the company’s trucks in separate incidents.

But somehow none of this prepared Mr. King for what happened to him on the night of August 10, while his wife was away with their grandchildren.

After waking up at his home in Monroe County, Mich., 2.5 miles from Toledo, Mr. King noticed that the motion lights in his driveway had come on. He then looked out his front window and saw a man who appeared to be breaking into his SUV.

‘It’s Not So Surprising That Union Militants Think They’re Above the Law’

As a resident of a neighborhood where violent crime is practically unheard of, Mr. King unhesitatingly walked out his front door to yell at the apparent thief.

So confident was Mr. King that his home was his “safe haven” from the Big Labor thuggery he and his employees have often faced on the job, in fact, that, prone and bloodied in front of his house a few seconds later, he didn’t realize he’d been shot.

Now he and the police know that the still-at-large intruder who fled the scene after shooting Mr. King with a handgun was not breaking into his vehicle, but planning to slash its tires after having scrawled “SCAB” across the side of the SUV.

Mr. King still finds it hard to accept that union zealots would go so far as to make his home, where his grandchildren are often to be found, part of their battlefield against his independent firm. “I guess I’m in disbelief,” he told Fox Business Network host Stuart Varney a few days after he’d been shot.

National Right to Work Committee President Mark Mix commented: “Employees, business owners, and other Americans are often shocked to find out how vicious union bosses and their fanatical followers can be.

“But it’s not so surprising that union militants think they’re above the law.

“In all 50 states, federal labor policy grants them the unique, monopolistic privilege to ‘represent’ employees who refuse to join the union as well as those who do in contract negotiations with the employer.

“Having wielded their monopoly-bargaining privileges for decades, union bosses now take them for granted.”

Revoking Union Bosses’ Monopolistic Legal Privileges Would Help Curtail Violence

Mr. Mix continued: “They think, if under federal law they have uncontested power to ‘negotiate’ the terms and conditions of employment for union nonmembers in unionized businesses, why shouldn’t they also have the power to ‘negotiate’ the terms and conditions of employment for independent workers in union-free firms?

“And why shouldn’t they be allowed to get rough if the employees and owners of union-free firms refuse to go along?”

The local police effort to identify, capture and bring to justice the forced-unionism militant who shot John King continues as this Newsletter edition goes to press.

But the long-term remedy for Big Labor lawlessness, Mr. Mix said, “is to take away union bosses’ federal monopoly-bargaining and forced-dues privileges. And that’s a job that Congress is obliged to do.”