Many of us are sad to go home - US tourist in SA

2016-11-09 16:18
Donald Trump (AFP)

Donald Trump (AFP)

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Cape Town – Many American tourists were walking around Cape Town in a state of shock or sadness on Wednesday morning after hearing Donald Trump had won the presidential election.

While the sun warmed the streets in the central business district, US citizens who were approached by News24 as they bought curios or explored the sights were sombre.

Janice Thomas, 51, an accountant from Maryland, said she was in disbelief at the "horrible" choice the country had made.

"I never thought he would win. We don't want to go home. Many of us are sad to go home," she said, after buying a leather belt from a stall.

She was aware of the political process, but was not sure what lay ahead for the country with Trump at the helm. Her best hope was to return home and make sure she remained involved in politics.

"He can't unilaterally make decisions or change laws. We need to vote for a new congress to stop many of the terrible things that he would do."

Banking on prayer

Sharon Wright, 61, walking around nearby, also did not know the effect Trump would have on the country.

"It is just not the typical political outcome for what we've been used to, especially some of the things that have been expressed by Trump through his ideology, his platform in terms of how it affects people of colour and women."

As a Christian, she believed prayer would help.

Four young, female tourists of student age who were studying a map of the Company's Garden said it was too soon to talk on camera. They said they were very upset and "not ready" to speak about the results.


Lynne Cameron and Mary Ann Jordan from Florida were devastated.

What worried Cameron most was that there were so many people who did not seem to care about the divisive things Trump had said during his campaign.

"I realised that people want change and I don't think change is a bad thing. But I do think it is bad if it tears us apart."

US citizens Lynne Cameron and Mary Ann Jordan

'Trump is good in business'

Washington DC resident Audrey Hinton, 69, had been looking forward to having Hillary Clinton as the next president.

She was proud that there would be a peaceful transition of power and hoped Trump would heal the divisions that seemed to dominate the campaign.

While he had put in an early vote for Clinton, medical doctor Jerry McConnell hoped for the best with Trump.

"Trump is good in business. We are hoping our investments and business interests will improve," he said. "We just hope that he keeps us out of any conflicts with other countries. That is my main concern."

McConnell, who said he had noticed a significant improvement in South Africa since 1994, told News24 he believed South Africa and the US could learn a lot from each other.

While not from the US, Irish citizen Enda Carroll made it clear that Trump was "bigoted, arrogant, a bully, a tyrant" and had no idea of how politics or the world worked.

Comparing the US election results to the Brexit referendum results, she quipped: "Brexit is a tremor. This is an earthquake."

News24 had not found any Trump supporters at the time of publication.

Watch the reaction of US tourists here:

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