How Trump’s Wall Poses a Threat to Artisan Brick Masons
Trump’s win is a shocking one. KKK Leaders are shocked, I am shocked, we are shocked, whether you voted for the guy or not. The election outcome threatens a lot. At risk countries, marginalised people, the working class in the States. We have all been thinking a lot about that last category. Are they racist? Angry? To be vilified? Coverage has ranged from confusion to empathy to happiness and anger.
But something keeps getting overlooked in the conversation. If Trump’s plan to build a wall comes to fruition, who will be hired to construct it. Most likely a huge, multi-national corporation. Not your local, hard working artisan brick mason, who fully deserve the job. This large overlook of this small group of people and the implications of them not getting hired says a lot about the state of the country and where things will head.
Lets put this out first: life for these bricklayers is about to get a lot harder.
Bricklayers are necessary for construction. But if Trump does start building a wall who will be the builders? It is hard to imagine they would be unionized, given that Donald Trump hates unions. Most artisan brick masons take pride in their work, so its natural to think they are mostly all unionized. But who will realistically pay and build for this wall? Taxes, further hurting the working class who need to spend their monthly paychecks constantly on goods and services that are taxed, might be raised to pay for this wall. And no doubt, cheap labor would be involved.
This hurts severely both Trump’s own supporters and the people who will eventually construct the wall. Cheap labor is notoriously unsafe and poses huge health and ethical concerns. Not only are these people hurt in the short term, the economy to build the wall will hurt them in the long wall.
Furthermore, even if artisan brick masons were hired, their traditions have no place in the wall, because all signs point to Trump’s wall being built efficiently and fully expedited. They, also, will not be hired.
Look, bricklayers swear by a variety of identities. Many I know come from across the political spectrum and across socio-economic, gender, race, nationality, religion and sex lines. This is important. If the wall is going to be built by multi national, billionaire funded construction programs, Trump directly attacks these people. The wall is an important symbol of authoritarianism, something this proud group of working class citizens oppose. The multitude of our nation’s bricklayers are profound, and works in direct opposition to a Trump presidency.
What is the solution? Should Trump hire these artisans? Of course artisans should have jobs. It won’t happen, and even if it did they would refuse, a group of people who mostly oppose the wall and Trump as a whole. Trump is anti-union and his Secretary of Treasury is not pro-artisan. Furthermore, Trump is a racist, neo-fascist bigot. These people are now his enemies, beyond their professions, by way of their identities and politics.
This points towards the larger problems of the upcoming 4–8 years, with the wall being a good study of how many people are going to be hurt and are being hurt right now.
The country needs to talk about the white working class in all its manifestations. And bricklayers are being seriously overlooked. It is a worthy national discussion to have, with your union leaders or with your bricklaying neighbour. In this crazy election cycle, lets not forget the little guys being directly impacted.