Dezeen Magazine

MAGA Building Blocks

MAGA Building Blocks encourage children to construct toy border wall

Conservative retailer Keep and Bear has launched a Lego-style kit for Donald Trump's border wall, with packaging that social media users are describing as rip-off and racist.

Released just in time for the holiday season, the Build the Wall Starter Kit includes 101 pieces for constructing a tiny plastic wall, accompanied by an angry-looking Trump figurine wearing a hard hat.

The plastic blocks, minifigure and packaging all bear resemblance to popular toy Lego, but were created by Keep and Bear – an online store that uses the tagline "one amendment to protect them all" and advertises a range of Trump-themed gifts.

As part of a line of toys, the MAGA Building Blocks mimic the proposed wall along America's southern border that became one of Trump's biggest, and most divisive, talking points during his presidential campaign.

Twitter users point out similarity to Lego

On the box is a logo similar in style to Lego's that reads MAGA, short for Make America Great Again, which Trump used as his campaign slogan and has since become synonymous with his supporters.

The package also carries a graphic of the product, which appears to be blocking a Lego-like character dressed in a sombrero and poncho, holding maracas, and stood in front of a Mayan temple and below colourful papel picado bunting – all stereotypical of Mexico.

This has caused a stir on social media, with Twitter users claiming the imagery is racist, and that Lego should file a lawsuit against Keep and Bear.

Keep and Bear's text accompanying the product gives little information about the contents, but rather refers to the caravan of migrants making its way towards the US from Central America.

"A mob of 10,000 Central American migrants is marching through Mexico and heading toward El Paso, Texas," it reads. "Mexican border agents attempted to stop them at the Mexican border, but to no avail."

"We understand why they want to flee Honduras and live and work in America. After all, we are the greatest nation on earth," the text continues. "In the interest of national security, however, we cannot allow just anyone and everyone to cross our borders. While there are good people attempting to enter our nation, there are also gangs, criminals, and terrorists. Everyone who wants to enter our country must enter legally for the safety of all."

"The wall must be built. The wall will keep America safe and strong. Only then will we be able to help those in need," it ends.

MAGA range includes Hillary Clinton figurine

The Build the Wall Starter Kit retails for $34.95 (although the site is currently offering $5 off) and is currently available for pre-order, with orders scheduled to begin shipping 23 November 2018.

The MAGA Building Blocks range also includes a figurine of Trump's opponent in the 2016 presidential race, Hillary Clinton, dressed in an orange prison uniform.

The likeness is accompanied by a block designed to resemble a computer, inscribed with the words "Are your emails safe?" – a reference to the controversy surrounding Clinton's use of her family's private email server for official communications during her tenure as the country's Secretary of State.

There is also a Crusader Figurine intended to represent America's "Christian ancestors", who "saved Western Civilization" from "radical Islam".

As for the real border wall, the president's administration issued an open call for design proposals last year, and several prototypes have been built on a site close of the border near San Diego.

However, ongoing disputes about how much the mega construction project will cost, and who will pay for it, seem to have stalled efforts for the moment.

Since the proposal was first mooted, architects and designers have responded with satirical versions that range from a 1,954-mile-long dinner table to an Ikea flat-pack kit.