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A Word to the Wise on Righteousness (4 of 4)
Series: A Word To The Wise
OPEN: Back in 1929, Chicago had a problem. In fact, the tentacles of that problem infested much of the nation around Chicago. The problem had a name. And that name was Al Capone.
Capone was a criminal. A wicked man who literally ran the city of Chicago. He owned most of the politicians and policemen, and those he couldn't buy, he threatened or had killed. Capone and his mob ran prostitution rings throughout the city and sold bootleg liquor worth millions.
Then, one day, a young Treasury agent and eleven of his handpicked men decided it was time to declare war on Capone.
Does anybody know the name of this young 26 year old Treasury Agent? (Elliot Ness).
Ness and his team ran continuous raids on Capone's operations and cost the mobster millions in lost revenue. As you can image, Capone was not happy with this and attempted numerous assassination attempts on Ness and succeeded in killing one of Ness's closest friends.
But before Al Capone took out a contract on this Treasury Agent, he decided on a softer approach. He sent a messenger to Elliot Ness with an envelope. At the time, Ness was making $2,800 a year (this was back in 1929) and the envelope contained $2000 inside. The messenger made it clear that this could be a weekly salary for Ness... if he would just lay off Capone.
Ness put the money back in the envelope and sent it and the messenger back to Capone.
THEN he called a press conference. Ness told the assembled newspaper men all about Capone's attempted bribe and of made it clear how much contempt he had for the man who had offered it.
The next day, the headlines read "Ness and his men are UNTOUCHABLE."
And thus began the legend of Eliot Ness and his Untouchables.
In a day of corrupt officials and policemen who were on the take Ness and his Untouchables became heroes. They were righteous men who could not be bought. They were upri ...
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