Trucking Activists Say American Drivers ‘Too Afraid to Sacrifice’ For Better Treatment
Little Rock, AR — As Americans watch the unprecedented Freedom Convoy led by Canadian truckers beginning to reach Ottawa, grassroots trucking activists in the United States are sharing their thoughts.
For more than two decades, Mississippi truck driver Charles Claburn has been leading protests and rallies demanding better treatment of truckers, once even organizing a five-mile convoy in New York.
He has driven 3.5 million miles without an accident or citation and is passionate about improving working conditions for America’s professional drivers.
Like his brash style or not, he has never shied away from the battles like mandating electronic logging devices (ELD) and reforming hours-of-service (HOS) rules, as well as ongoing challenges such as the truck parking shortage and mistreatment of drivers by shippers, receivers and some carriers.
Through it all though, he has gained an interesting perspective about what is happening right now in Canada.
“They’ve had enough,” Claburn told Transportation Nation Network (TNN) on Friday. “They are standing up like we used to but we’ve gone the opposite direction.”
Claburn contends deteriorating working conditions U.S. truckers are facing along with the current supply chain crisis is a result of decades of bureaucrats piling on more regulations and mandates on the trucking industry.
“Our country was founded by the people and for the people but has become a bureaucracy where they just tell us what to do,” he said.
The long-time activist is not hopeful working conditions for truckers will improve any time soon.
“This industry will not hold anyone accountable for the mistreatment they receive on a daily basis because American drivers are weak and brainwashed. They are afraid to stand up for themselves. They are too afraid to sacrifice,” Claburn charged.
Trucker and activist Jeremy Johnson — a.k.a. the Disrespected Trucker — agrees with Claburn.
“People are too scared to sacrifice, honestly, it’s sad,” Johnson told TNN.
Many will recall in May 2020, Johnson helped organize the longest trucker protest in U.S. history in Washington, D.C.
On Saturday, he and a few American drivers will be protesting at the U.S.-Canada border in Pembina, ND, in a show of solidarity with Canadian truckers fighting their country’s COVID-19 restrictions.
However, Johnson tells TNN only a handful of U.S. drivers are planning to attend, but it is not for a lack of him trying.
“The fact you can’t afford to take off one day to go up and protest tells you that you are a slave to the system,” he commented.
Neither man believes a similar movement among U.S. truckers is likely to happen in America any time soon.
Johnson says part of the reason is because organizing on social media has become increasingly difficult due to growing censorship, while Claburn has a bit of a different take.
“Drivers are more complacent now than they’ve ever been. We talk, talk, talk, but nobody ever does anything. You can’t even get them to write a letter or send an email to their congressman. Misery loves company,” he lamented.