Over the weekend, a construction worker hung a Mexican flag from the top of the Trump International Hotel & Tower being erected in Vancouver, Canada. The worker, Diego Reyna, 30, was born in Mexico and has some choice words for America's Republican presidential frontrunner.
"From the concrete pouring, finishing, drywall, taping, wood forming and general labour, Mexicans were there, building it [and] doing good work." Reyna wrote of the construction project in a Facebook post published on Sunday. "The comments Trump has made about us, did not stop us from doing the high quality work we have always done," he said, adding, "your tower here in Vancouver is premium quality, and we were a crucial part of it, not just Mexicans but immigrants as whole, like your ancestors were." Reyna also pointed out that "while working on your tower Mexicans didn't steal anything nor raped anyone, we just did the best work we could possibly do," referring to Trump's conviction that, in his words, "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best… they're bringing drugs, they're bringing crime. They're rapists."
In a conversation with The Huffington Post Canada, Reyna explained that he doesn't work on this construction strike, but was acting on behalf of his Mexican and Muslim friends who do. "They kept telling me their frustration, their anger and their hurt but they can't say anything," he said, adding, "I did it because I don't work there."
Reyna, a native of Chiapas, is a steel framer. For him, the fear isn't that Trump will become the American president, but that he's started a nasty movement that could spread north. "I'm not concerned about Trump rising to power," he told HuffPost Canada, "I'm concerned about his values and his points of view extending to our country… as he labels negatively an entire ethnic group, that could jeopardize our society… That can spill into our society."
He told CBC News that the project itself shows a spirit of collaboration. "Look at that building, look how beautiful it is … and that is a result of a coordination of all the ethnic groups in Canada," he said, adding, "I've seen every race and every religion working in that building."
Reyna isn't the only one to have taken issue with Trump. According to a December poll, most Canadians think the building—which is owned by the Holborn Group—shouldn't bear Trump's name. Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson agrees.
The Holborn Group told CBC News that it wouldn't comment on the incident or American elections more generally. Holborn did not immediately respond to my request for comment.
The flag has since been removed from the construction site, but Reyna's Facebook post has been shared more than 1,700 times. Some are showing support on Twitter, as well:
Reyna's words call to mind previous comments by a Mexican laborer who responded to Trump soon after he called Mexicans "rapists."
Maybe Trump should have apologized for his offensive comments when his daughter Ivanka asked him to.
Danielle Wiener-Bronner is a news reporter.