“(Donald Trump) likes to be controversial, but this guy is acting like a dictator. I follow politics back in Ethiopia because it’s still not stable there and (Trump) saying something like that, the dictators in Africa use it to justify what they do.” says Vancouver Daniel Mekonnen.
By Gordon McIntyre (Vancouver Sun) |
VANCOUVER, BC―Wow, the president of the United States just called your native country a poo pit, how’s that feel?
Given this president, not shocking, not surprising, but disappointing, said Daniel Mekonnen.
“He is not supposed to be like this as president of the U.S.A,” Daniel Mekonnen, a native Ethiopian, said inside his Commercial Drive restaurant, Harambe.
“(Donald Trump) likes to be controversial, but this guy is acting like a dictator. I follow politics back in Ethiopia because it’s still not stable there and (Trump) saying something like that, the dictators in Africa use it to justify what they do.”
In case you’re just emerging from a cave, Trump, while discussing Haiti, El Salvador, Africa and immigration policy with U.S. lawmakers on Thursday, called them “shithole countries.”
The subsequent worldwide condemnation of Trump’s vulgarness, at least, warmed Mekonnen’s heart.
United Nations human rights spokesman Rupert Colville, for instance, cast aside diplomatic niceties.
“There is no other word one can use but ‘racist,’” he told reporters in Geneva. “You cannot dismiss entire countries and continents as ‘shitholes,’ whose entire populations, who are not white, are therefore not welcome.”
The African Union, which represents each of the continent’s 55 countries that Trump insulted, issued a statement expressing its “infuriation, disappointment and outrage over the unfortunate comment made by Mr. Donald Trump, the president of the United States of America, which remarks dishonor the celebrated American creed and respect for diversity and human dignity.”
Vicente Fox, a former president of Mexico, took a swipe at Trump on Twitter. “Your mouth is the foulest shithole in the world,” Fox tweeted.
Internationally, news editors were scratching their heads trying to translate the offensive word.
“Unclean countries” or “pigsties” were a couple of translations used by Spanish news agency, among others that are not printable.
In Swahili, the term suggested was “Bong Land,” according to the Washington Post, meaning an uncivilized place. One German newspaper translated Trump’s words as “garbage dump” and in Croatia it’s been translated as “used holes.”
Sankei, an industrial and economics daily newspaper in Japan, settled on “countries that are like dirty toilets.”
The most enigmatic translation, surely, came from Taiwan’s Central News Agency: “Countries where birds don’t lay eggs.”
It was also noted on Twitter that an anagram for Trump’s boorish phrasing is “his hotel.”
Daniel Mekonnen, 54, moved to Vancouver from his homeland in 1991 and opened Harambe in 2001.
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