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tonight on gay youth homes public affairs bill reichert interviews frosty forms born a member of the american indian movement who participated in the weeklong takeover of the fair trial at tronic supplanted shipwreck in mexico lie was the plant taken over and why was a takeover particularly with with firearms initially other had been reported that back to the marianas to some of the people who know what might be turned out they were they would be true motives which isn't unto have to say interested individuals and of the ones who would have to say a lot to that summit would try something is doing so well with his very proper people were getting there are sick sick tale you know they were paying for the hospital extra tax experts have things like this but two years ago the plant was employing a thousand people and also the drop of dropping off enabling conversation with shirley is sort of hard to understand
because there are other plans for long full scale an increasing as a matter of fact they profit shown were immense in the millions of dollars but they had drop from a thousand people known to have to be fired one hundred and forty last week's all at once why dont want to support that we will find a reason for that was that specifically the reason why these were the reasons why you went in there when you did yes that was the final vote and forty individuals right off the bat but so there were they all indian it's not really those one or two but people who care that that's another thing in itself all i think it was ninety seven percent indian they were there wasn't a management position to they were all taken by a white person was it in your estimation if this if this plant was
as you say it's ranked know what four hundred in the nation in terms of in terms of us companies and profits and stuff like that and really did say was a soda company of polaroid is so was it do you think to specifically or a racial move no for them it was fairly economics they were comparing us of the plant in korea what'd they were something like arthritis or forty cents to thirty some cents an hour and o'leary their rationale was the high turnover rate than they would rationalize this session reports on this this area because people moving from own roots in the reservation or whatever but this cause famine thompson they would short for high absentee rate plus the technical terms applied in this particular trade were directly you couldn't directly translated from
now for me with a smile and this may be that these robbers rationalizations because the people who work there tell me with dixon exception of a few jobs that they couldn't learn the whole dublin week and that they were on hold it in the lyrical for on the job training where the federal government paid half of the wages of the trainees they just you just know it's a weekend we can cut this to make its own cohesive in italy foreign owned it ok you said the city of you you go look at some reports are the band and the way the play was set up they did have that they did have the you know the money to pay these people and as you say there is and there was a highly a high turnover rate people
didn't come to work in aleppo i think why why would that be why would that they were yes if if they were getting paid a somewhat close to i assume a decent wage nearly over the minimum daily aluminum it's those long woman who worked for eleven years they're from the inception back in the us sixty five or inner well i guess it's worth ten years but now after all these years he was getting eleven cents a woman right in the cia or why were federal officials call him way before that won't work why weren't why wasn't the plant investigated eleven ten years ago when this was happening what's happening now it's been going on for ten years the reasons why i really i really going on it it had been bought up complaints before that i guess they were fairly close tears and there wasn't enough evidence to warrant and they had a demerit system that they used
and you can get the merits far are going into battle rapping for being absent term for what maybe did and termite good enough reason and eighteen the merits and you're out my we believe can be proven helpful income on the trials that pleases to merit system to terminate them after they've reached journeyman stetson yes it's a kind of training and omar are because then as soon as they were off the trainee it would be one or two your program as chinese they would go the term aid because the company would have to pay their full salary of whatever going great in that i think the trailers they were also the question i'm not clear on this really can just refer to it that they tried to get the news have backfired it didn't work so those non union so they didn't have to pay the going rate right but they would have to pay the full salary least minimum wage and this way there that's making them pay twice what they were paying start with so essentially
whenever trainee was trained and was eligible for this he was just a move decided within weeks you know it only took a week or two for another trainee to learn his position and a working half as much this century contributed to have that we can probably get rid of ok so all these things contributed to the group of people that their decision to work to take those plans are entirely out tele how this was planned out how was executed and what happened when you guys are less than what they're really started so i wasn't there the initial takeover i got their approximate twenty four hours later when i heard about it i was here in town were in school and there was some meaning saguaro that with some of the news medium things in mr morsi and some people decided looked at night live set to go to see if i
could be the nicest and so i am strong a man now one of the things about a nose if you can at all possible get their health because this is falling in people we don't look upon this is you're oklahoma and in the most of the head of the un mission ended in california married to a narrow river that didn't enter into an issue is another traveler themselves it's because we're with a stick together because of three people go in and do these allegations has been nothing so nano and i liked also emphasize that usually and this is too early to find out back on but people have tried and it gnawed on what extent they tried going through peaceful means of getting these i think so but this confrontation
is uses almost always a last resort a very manly last resort it's the only way we can get her to dictators and it's regrettable because i was an owl weaken i didn't shoot anyone in i didn't want to get shot but stan having made these people's lives were at stake much more than this we also have information i'll infers that at the end of in the middle of nineteen oh six seventy six that this plant was going to pull out because they could run was cheaper in the southeast mccarthy are now the group that they did take over the plant was its mostly consisting of a member's are how i was the crew stratified us mostly now oppose but it was amy and there were also some members of the
mobile coalition parental of all those are the end of college is concerned people with a ms kamler memphis talents aim can be incorporated almost anything at any moment to somebody's fool rather than a gold to ten years of revenue to be done which of the nine ten years old sycamore director and i could say it is regrettable but in some cases are within their work ok now you said the takeover of the plan was was the last resort had there been anything carissa on the part of the navajo people or a man or anybody else who's concerned with it with was they're in contact with a fairchild people before this point before they understand land on some pretty big fears now this isn't the only if the plan itself was the major objective this time but there were still some objectives of this summit meeting
i don't know the whole thing was firing of two nurses at the public health service hospital for speaking out of something like this and that other things such as the whole ideal of industrializing right there the foreclosure which is sacred land to not only novel with the hope we end up with fewer but the whole thing just exploitation profit making for outside people the novelist didn't run it like a sadly there was one person somebody said somewhere in the management i don't believe was very kind of otherwise was all run by outside people and they sure can have feelings are traditionally raised anywhere near you know the way in the interest respect to the natural environment that's not saying that that's alarmed cannot be you somewhat but not
exploited to this particular extent and such is the power plants are still terrible here our know what is it what is ceo what does the plant producer war with vague on that point integrate the circuits for our cameras possibly radio's noah just integrated circuit small circle because it takes so it doesn't take any high degree of skill to do it because the forthcoming to come together and teach him how to solder a few other things and that was it such as one trainee reports on this newspaper heroes is reading radio the top her gender trenchard history year it's she says she knew enough to a corner own after week so wasn't that difficult work with any of his patients the rational is women are better suited for this and there was a high availability of women towards their motivation so that's why they came
in ok see their weapons know what do i want what to one on inside and outside the plant during that week well we are barricaded the doors because a lot of blind spots that would that we we knew what would happen we know that came out to a fight it wouldn't take him long to get up to the building that is true for well placed sniper's could that effectively control people on the roof and they came out of the door so we had everything inside barricaded and ready to fight and that momentous other nasty stuff cook time eighty five it to him and we discovered this so at one time when they won one off analysts see what was noses things and radiation isn't that was questionable why and sense a ceiling was associating there's no one would see over how would we begin who weren't expert matt feel certain
that we did find out from outside sources that it was a dangerous gases where votes are all the safety precautions and up it was on the reservation they were licensed have two hundred curious about which is quite a bit i understand they had sixty one point something left now if this is open to sled in the end to kill anybody came in contact with it doesn't penetrate anything anything like that we found out that we'll go inside the factory the factory year i don't know how long half life is but how they would go about destroying their contents in the point that it would kill anybody came in contact with when it was learned the open air was that if they could have contaminated a few square miles and now with this we wouldn't have done that because we don't want to hurt people are but we would've done inside the factory is a last resort as it became known that far it would be
you know a credibility was gone anyway we would've why wasn't going to support they would know would have to say if it came down to that point because we're lost contact with low and do all this stuff and the fact would be that they come and its you know is can be by force and i was no more negotiating have to be done at that point and it was just the last line of defense force it rather than serve a lot a long jail terms and kill our own people which what might've happened we didn't want to be shooting and now local crops especially are as the split this way didn't shoot anybody but the national guard a federal marshal in america for a volt will lose one policeman end up there was just another bargaining point but we would have used it
where we tell the people at state and we had a meeting and we said that today the stadium aka comes not really gets down and you've got saying there be willing to die and insulin and won the state would there were a couple of younger ones of the parents were repeated harmless from a kmart understandably but the other westerners or ill will or die with from driven by this time of people from several parts of the country there and with faces before death and the un and to certain extent to the extensive sir it's preferable to a living where was as if our that could contribute which is your ministry would have died yeah it would've been it would've been much prefer going to just go down shooting in that city below a long tail senses we need them as murders which within one of the only one that was negotiated the other
was the was the nobel negotiating negotiating or eating whatever that went on during your patients what dear what was said during these during these bargaining sessions and was there anything that was accomplished well it all very the plant itself tried to make it a tribal matter they say well this is just between the trial government and yourself and we didn't want this of all the cars that wasn't the issue at all i was between us and fair chance and i didn't know i'm not exactly does because representing are the inequities within the plant itself and these are far reaching which i'm sure will get into that going to work but the use of anywhere from forty six million dollars illegally of us funds
they also go to the health care bill it has come a promising stay there and stay there and we had it done they were getting ready to move our nineteen seventy six and just leave everybody flat high and dry and it's there were in the reason of going in ok you mentioned the first or the illegal use of funds are in what way what were they doing with a whole bunch of you know a couple marinos whatever the figure as well as on the job training program there's supposed to be two or three years three years is supposed be the mexican are extenuating circumstances but we did find one letter that referred to it was written to the fbi by the company that they think they might be pressing the legal point a little
bit too far and it was time to get out of that and now this was woven with southeast asia and because it's so much cheaper there if the government wasn't and pay half the salary of the trainees well and i figured will's crosswords and this is any economic students he would do the drain our economy was a huge corporations of millions of dollars flowing out of the country and none of that could have been used here ok so you could see it was more profitable but the bulk of his with his patriotic stuff that is definitely far from patriots win ok so we're still widow was so bargaining that you did you tried to accomplish and during that week the two in the plant really didn't know amato whole lot from what you say you know they they held our heads that
if we didn't get out by they said nine nine pm sunday early which shut the plant down with a tiny coastal badly for sharing these four and seventy five people have a job who were going into the job anyway but they didn't know it was another year over year and they tried to make a tribal thing that the tribe five years and they walked out of that you elicited their purses find it was playing right in their hands to shut down so the shutdown the early they use in order to make them much more only chance for pokemon go elsewhere so then it was playing in their hands we had found these documents and a nozzle with different and that in the community like to emphasize this a community the old people traditional people all the people there were forests almost almost all of them that they had a
meeting at the town council about what to do all this so the vote there to support a sonata supporters to vote was four hundred and fifteen to nothing to support us and these are the people as you know the work that got by the council leader own senses sunday and we were just having a major meetings going saturday and sunday the people representing the plant from the indians point of view that it didn't always see that when it was explained to them and some documents were referred to that we had they immediately were forced to and now one of the things i came on that we didn't ask for an anonymous to demand that was not mentioned could we offer to limit for a little timeline of this anyway but it would be worse than people would benefit but that i came up with the idea look in the complete amnesty and was accepted so like this is furious they can give this man give my
name i'm on them to be harassed anyway because the fbi harassed as anyone that suggests soon be known by now and the later reports coming out that those shows any inclination not being from big corporations i didn't do the mcdonald have statement of what was his woes his position on the only in one situation it's hard to say he was kind of hard to find for a while it seems he was trying to stay on for a while why was that do you think it was low tone and there may be some of the things come out and grabbing him i don't know this what makes you think that nothing concrete its widest i can collaborate on our navy was very many women just being careful i don't normally can say at this
point so either or just it you know this rather avoid just a moment because i don't have the record buying waiting for something that i don't know so but the people who are supporting us or sending it up type of an illegal listed peanut moment is just the question should be there they should be and this is concerning people is a major issue why were they there as a good finally don't know why he did say oh maybe had losing reasons we wasn't there he never did come ok now you said that you went in there specifically to get these so these things at least ugly open and then it was the issue about the hospital with other things already stumbled onto these our team went through the files we didn't we didn't know it was that they know with any idea but then we found out
there was a lot going in their lives but my point was that you you initially went into the point because of what the hundreds in what is a thirteen fourteen hundred and forty workers a fart within what a two week period or so on once the media so on friday i believe it was i understand that there was no advance notice of this at all just a statement was on a bulletin voters saying the economic recession now the search and those are the hunted forty people making to work since may well secure always know my do these people go more secure in a just a fact that they were buying cars and things like this made payments to make and all this episode below nelson are john abbott what we contend is that the company was being less than truthful and they said that it's just a recession or backing off from all the
stuff we believe it was just a part of a massive well continue aiding those shutdowns of the unhappiness cutting back and so and the funny that pull out and people didn't know this ok so that reason you you in a year or roughly what thirty five between thirty five to forty five people took the point and were armed but just a lot to contend they don't know we want you know we want to get shot or nobody wanted to shoot anybody else would say was a peaceful sit in how long it could take at least just really very seldom care nothing more than a moose i'm not so many as if on breaking and entering a plan only in that so before so we have to go on a little bit farther we have to use forceful means if you remember i can't remember the senate where it really was a second line in the constitution this is it for the government isn't doing the
job then that should be overthrown is not those words but that's what i mean that's the implication yes ok so you said that there was to be no violence however there was some there was there was a witch i'd like you to explain their wares couple shots fired but you say that they were in the aerosol is this so let's get that cleared up ryan was watching the eleven o'clock news was an open their networks in the palace ah well i want to ask you what you thought about media coverage which gitter well there was some good you know some bad guy we offer live broadcasts we managed to get hold of an hour was like you know i have to say the but let's just say i have the people out there are familiar with the term yellow journalism i would say there was rampant are the issues were definitely
against this according to the farmington new stations are there but the information itself is so in my opinion my malone is a parasitic port town feeding off a noble people without without them our old people they're farmed tuna would soon become essentially a ghost as low people living there but they made a good percent of it depends upon the local people and it's it's just there's so many different issues coming and getting off of attention again i'm sorry but they're not that's to say the reports some were fatal summer deadly favorable and some were not definitely not believe that the more favorable reports that came from the national people like you know like just a upi your bikini the major networks and the more maybe unfavorable or or leaning media there
different way would be our own local word networks ah that's that would be too much of a generalization because there were some that there was some good coverage amounted to searches a thousand won states that was all very favorable up until the last when he said that there was an exchange of gunfire and the next one over nine people in and now the implication here be it accidentally or not is that the credibility of the american indian movement isn't very high in other words solutions during the runup follows their insight and give first encounter that there was a shot fired one shot did not come from inside the factory was i am all i can say is it was fired by one of the supporters outside accidentally and it went on the air we didn't go near anybody or anything and
because of this shot the policemen who were covering the gates there were about at the time voting cards are surrounding the plant bump they were sitting ducks are receiving more of this data and they didn't know what was going on the use of a pullback understandably now this is where we're fortunate that there they didn't try to set up a line of communication are kids within a half an hour later you really got in touch with a straw and the chief of the novel police which is a sore spot among all people that is white and honestly get it straightened out he was asked was well and we straightened out we did not fire are going to tell it and the shot was outside and inside the plant well there's some confusion some more i don't know where they can through this confusion within the plant too because also the summit look we're eating dinner at the time i think and nine there was no more police cars to solicit a veil pulled out
to salute to open the gate knows lot of people coming in and out but the people would stay there from that the word out you know it's not only some of them thought it was over and they would as leaving before the feds came down and on an unusual that the word out it wasn't over and they came back and the police we gather we had a half an hour of this happen we're finding that touches a ten o'clock got a ten thirty eight years so we said a half an hour to get everything straightened out in an eleven o'clock the police came back into their original positions but there was only one shot fire there was no exchange and are people that not all up and hightail it a fair shot and you have not been granted an amnesty at this point doing and when the people heard but when shells fired some people thought it was over you had no limits and steve that point now are the amnesty i didn't have at the meeting today you in a week if some odd hours i had been up twenty some are as the slip for fueling that open was a
film of that sleep so when the marianas and came back to chicago who were affordable are standing connection to flee from a window so meetings for listening and then it was over and then people left and the police called on the role of us in the nude beach activity over for firearms store convinced of like this animal to kind of miniatures certainly hard enough time commitment and we laughed but the implication of the justices i don't want a misfit movie room because their strength lies within our credibility we didn't know we were there was over i know that there was also reported a couple reporters scotland newsman get their got slightly roughed up and that one of them had a broken nose and such like that
what what happened there was happening outside i can with a secondhand information that having been supporters of main camps outside of occupations before we do know that these pitchers that they take and granting that this time nobody knew about amnesty we discuss all of the milk only we all expected to pull some jail terms of this eventful was subtle and i'm very grateful or not but at the time we didn't know this and women as they were around taking pictures of all the supporters you can always go into files all over the place in erie sometimes citizen wounded knee in all the places that custer charles says in all the disturbances are used as evidence against this and they were warned time and time again if you want to do some reporting why don't you go and investigate some of these documents in washington pertaining to this if you wanna do some investigative reporting are still coming around and saw pictures of supporters to be used later against him or a water for a second
from the files that you are getting as it is the files you found inside the plant we were able to get the information out at that time to be supporters of it they could we have some listeners thought we would let the cuff we moved to be people of war would you know report straight news not yellow journalism like miller's one reporter who may develop the best so we gave him a straight story and he really rolled into bed made us look really rotten he was only one and it came jetting into this more of one would let him and why should he just destroys but the ones that cannot say this isn't against free journalism i'd like to say this is your this was yellow journalism we were against it are there's a portable washing post wm he saw the documents show us more reporters from tucson and louis came in and they took photographs of all the documents and we had to say while the giggling at the xerox machine working and we get it we had copies of these are so there are copies out
and like to make that clear to any federal people listening there are copies out and we have more proof research mr causes happen before there was very incriminating stuff on in namibia a building in washington dc that wasn't paul managed to get out some was caught not that than the federal people came in with their jurisdiction lawless and also among the stuff we found was no longer there so it and wanted to help me and so yet somehow ok so there was there was there was a reason for you to tell these people pay fewer research a story worth story to watch and check the stuff after we got copies of the committee's i mean will these people are a smaller country and like i said they're pretty good file on me by now i'm sure
and these people that really didn't want that could have been taken that were to be used against them in and fixes be in there is incriminating enough end up they just didn't want them and they were warned these people pose known there was no need to take pictures of these people they were supporters i know what it could be useful there was there was a story out there the story was all the stuff we're giving out that the victims were to sensationalism or something i don't know so these two were summoned reporters whatever animal it happen that perhaps is i think they have fairly high boiling point myself obviously the one that hit him didn't i would've happened possibly with me maybe i don't know i really don't know i'm a reporter pre of noxious well i understand he did get sort of a noxious i don't know the proof of this year but the i can understand why he was hit in the
isosceles editorials calling and the ugly face of anarchy in all listen i think this is once again you're yo jailers the yellow journalism sensationalizing and something that deviates from main point i was getting away from the true meaning of what the whole thing is about another word that has got more thing can not and news coverage in the hole you know that i'm sure that i mean it is blown out of proportion proportion because most things like that option as an instrument like this at supporters from elsewhere investigating just to see you know trying to prove was wrong perhaps excessive that was very recently of china do that stayed in the finest or some ways though you say that there will be a pro is known as a trial the recall for the civil rights so was i can't now is going to be investigated anyway everything ideally ago another audit
complete audit to find out the legalities of all this thing with up with these new documents and the key evidence that you found within the plant and everything that went on during a nation what what you think via the result of this investigation and they were a whole fairchild what habits due day i mean well holy get him for these allegedly illegal work transactions that they're going to a certain extent i think you're going to be stung but like it's a free students of economics there's only so much you can sting us huge corporation and we say oh they're selling four hundred that's huge enough but it is just as some company a branch of polaroid which is monstrous an end so the money being given the lawyers and then add the best going
and so that at the start would essentially just slap on the wrist but often enough to the truth will come out who will support what we did pay just a couple other thoughts here at it i just like your reaction to the fertile wounded knee incident jimmy had the occupation of the year the church of wisconsin what was your feeling about what are your feelings on those particular incidents were wounded knee was brought about by annoying say is its alleged began prisoner of improvement the courts are still going to trial so what i could say can be used could be backfiring in syria something isn't you know something that they can find in the departure or so i don't want that but i it was alleged that the
chosen nation dick wilson was doing some hiring illegal things and now wasn't being fair to the people and he was just a puppet for the white bureaucrats washington i mean for instance there was one man in the pine ridge reservation at eight hundred acres of prime grazing land and the police wasn't honored by him mr hollis ave it was a lot of this really in these can be sewn when it's least by trial representative or somebody somebody control and why should he was getting a dollar and a career for his land and his eight hundred dollars made him ineligible for welfare and things like that so the man was starting the deathly thunder prime acres of land and i mean it was just being squeezed to death and this this is this one case now many many more of your bunk you know the people all over the the income is just ridiculous for being
what it is but it is only years is that controlled are the wrong people and their own interest like people sued over almond a nice big shiny cars all time when i remember once by stressing of lupus a poignant story i suppose i don't really think so far the lady saying that once a week she would walk ten miles to a grocery store your groceries and walk ten miles and she says every time dick wilson are some his men which are now trying to affect really the goon squad the debate they just pass to buy now we are often right now this this isn't like these people to iran and brand new cars and suddenly who they are representing has to walk an older lady and top ten miles and it's the old people really that maybe sam
stovall in chicago when we left those old people i mean old people sixty seven year old people don't even speak english who couldn't i couldn't really comprehend the whole thing that they were supporting us because they knew it was wrong while we came out of their use to always thought of closeness that girl you know they didn't know too much english but instead they learned some phrases somewhere just for this occasion i said god bless you all for staying out and now that's mimi works you can listen to an interview with one of the members of the american indian movement who occupied a fair trial blankenship rock new mexico the plant was closed several days after we talked with frosty the people who owned the plant from california said the reason they closed it was because they were another takeover here or there
KUNM Public Affairs: Fairchild Plant Takeover, Interview with Bill Reichert
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KUNM Public Affairs with Bill Reichert presents an interview with Frosty Forensborne, a member of the American Indian Movement and participant in the week-long takeover of the Fairchild Electronics Plant in Shiprock, New Mexico. Forensborne answers why this event took place and why they used firearms to do so.
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Interviewee: Forensborne, Frosty
Interviewer: Reichert, Bill
Producing Organization: KUNM
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Duration: 01:00:00
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Chicago: “KUNM Public Affairs: Fairchild Plant Takeover, Interview with Bill Reichert,” 1975-03-04, WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed September 28, 2023,
MLA: “KUNM Public Affairs: Fairchild Plant Takeover, Interview with Bill Reichert.” 1975-03-04. WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. September 28, 2023. <>.
APA: KUNM Public Affairs: Fairchild Plant Takeover, Interview with Bill Reichert. Boston, MA: WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from