Michigan locals raise funds to help hot dog vendor, Clinton Tarver, who was attacked by ‘Right to work’ union protesters
Clinton Tarver has been serving hot dogs to hungry locals in downtown Lansing, Michigan for the last five years, but an attack by pro-union protesters this literally destroyed his small business in a matter of minutes.
During a protest against right-to-work legislation in Michigan’s capital, Tarver’s catering supplies were destroyed when demonstrators tore down the tent where he was serving and trampled his gear.
The tent had been set up by the conservative Americans for Prosperity, which supports the legislation Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law Tuesday that allows unionized workers to opt out of paying union dues.
Word spread about the incident, and local residents on both sides of the issue began rallying to help Tarver out.
Lorilea Zabadal, a staff member for Republican state Rep. Al Pscholka, set up an online fundraiser at gofundme.com/SupportClint. The goal was to reach $5,000. As of Wednesday afternoon, over $32,000 in donations had been raised.
“I supported Clint. He’s a great guy and a great small business,” Lt. Governor Brian Calley said on Twitter. He also thanked citizens who had supported Tarver financially.
Tarver said that state Sen. Joe Humes and his wife reached out to Tarver on Tuesday night promising to reimburse him for his equipment.
And a spokesperson for Americans for Prosperity said they plan to reimburse Tarver as well.
Tarver was called the ‘N-word’ and Uncle Tom as they attacked his booth. “You’re on the wrong side,” was repeated over and over says the man.
“Everyone that had a ticket I had given a hot dog to,” the 63-year-old owner of Clint’s Hot Dog Cart and Casual Catering told FoxNews.com. “So when two guys, one with a mask, came to get their hot dogs, I didn’t think anything of it because they had tickets and I was just there for a job.”
Tarver described the horrific scene to the Lansing State Journal.
“I was trying to salvage some of my stuff but my friend, he works at the Capitol, he said, ‘Don’t worry about that. You gotta get out of there,’ ” Tarver said. “So, I crawled out of the tent as they cut it. My tables were being spilled and stepped on. It was all just destroyed. I just couldn’t believe what I was hearing and seeing.”