Showing posts with label U.S elections. Show all posts
Showing posts with label U.S elections. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Voices on Obama: Emmanuel

It’s very interesting for an African to become the president in the United States. He’s very interesting, and I’m very happy for the politics.  It’s like Ghana, the democracy needs to be understood, if not, an African cannot be a president in the United States. It’s because of the democracy.
It’s like Ghana too, because of the democracy, if they finish the election, there's no violence.  It’s all quite interesting because even in Africa, some of the countries, like Zimbabwe, after the elections, well, you know what is happening over there; their leader doesn’t want to give up.
If it’s not your turn you have to step down and then let someone else in.

There must be changes, there must be change.

Emmanuel is from Ghana and has been living in Khayelitsha, South Africa for 3 months. He is an entrepreneur and is opening up a restaurant soon.

Voices on Obama: Abigail and Dure

For me, because they say now he’s the second Mandela, you know Mandela was the one we look up to, our role model, and now he’s followed Mandela’s footsteps now.  He's the second Black president.

I actually think he’s going to be bad for Africa. Yes, because before, in the past it was 'Poor Africa'. America would say Poor Africa. He’s got family in Kenya so he knows what Africa is about and he’s not going to say Poor Africa. He’s not going to be as sympathetic.

I feel he’s going to be less sympathetic. In all our Afrikaans papers and things we read, they are also speculating that he’s going to be less sympathetic, the economic people and everyone is speculating that.

Abigail and Dure are shoe sales associates in Knysna, South Africa

Friday, November 7, 2008

Voices on Obama: Frank and Bernie

What do you think of the new president of the US?

Oh it’s cool.  I hope that he’ll just be nice and look after the people.  It would be nice. There won’t be a big issue.

                                 What does it mean to you as a South African?

For me, it's quite different.  Well, he’s a Negro and maybe it will be better, better or worse I don't know. But I try to guess that he'll be equal to his family, the family is what’s important over other things. It will be nice, man.

When are you gonna be South Africa's president?

Oh gosh sake, look.  Look at the new president. That’s what I’m saying.  In South Africa, you don’t know when it’s summer, or when it’s winter.


This country is not right, man.

 This country is very bad. The crime rate is very bad. 
Killing children, and all this is bad.

Do you have children?

Six children. Two girls and four boys I got and I’m selling fruit everyday.  Everyday.

Oooh, it's heavy man. And look here I don’t got fingers too.

There’s no money in this damn country.

Frank and Bernie sell fruit from their truck in various areas around Cape Town.

Voices on Obama: Nick and Chris

I’m a little bit skeptical, I would say. But seemingly Barack Obama seems like a really good choice and it's really positive that so many people have gone out and voted for him. But I’m just a bit, ya, a bit skeptical about world politics; if it will really actually mean change. That’s pretty much my opinion on it.

Well, I share skepticism on world politics, but at the same time sometimes you have call a spade a spade. And Bush was a fucking spade. {laughs}

Any improvement on that front I think is good, ya know? And um, because America’s got such a huge controlling power in the world economy, their stability and non-war mongering is going to benefit everybody. But on our side, um, I’m not entirely sure what these elections will prove.

Chris and Nick are students at University of Cape Town, South Africa

Voices on Obama: Christopher

Did you know the United States elected a new president?

Now I didn’t know that. I don’t even look at the news anymore. I used to look at news, I used to watch T.V, I used to watch soccer. I like my cricket, I like my sport, but I don’t watch it anymore.

Why not anymore?

Cause I haven't got a T.V. Cause I'm sleeping in the car.

And the newspapers?

I read newspapers yeah, I like to read newspapers, I used to work at C&A. When I was a young kid, I used to work at C&A - Cape Town, Bree street. I used to work in the old C&A building.
I used to work in books and I like to read. And I like to read the bible also. Yeah that's my main book I like to read.
My parent's they brought me up like that you see, read the bible everyday, every time.

 Why don't you work at C&A anymore?
Oh that was in the 70's I used to work there. Now it's in the 2000's.

Tell me the difference.

Oh, it's very different.

How's it different for you?

It's not the same bosses anymore you see. These days, they're not bosses like they used to be. You get good people and you get bad people, and today you get bad people.

How do you think South Africa’s changed?

{Sigh} Bad.

Do you have hope?

I have hope, yeah, I have hope for the country, yeah. I also worked for the country.
It’s not the country, it’s the people, you see, the people.  The country is fine.
I was in places .I met mates over seas guys that I worked with.
Jesus man, they enjoyed our country. That was in the early days I used to work for the English person, Mr Morgan. He said to me, Christopher in 1984, when he sent me to Joburg, he said to me, look here Christoper, in ten years time, this was 84, he said in ten years time, you’ll see how many cars will be in South Africa. It was '84, ten years was '94. And look at the cars now!
More cars than people. Now where’s the money coming from? 


 Now, I've got to do some scrap... {laughs}

Christopher is a repairman and metal scrap collector in the False Bay area of Cape Town.  Interviewed in Kalk Bay.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Voices on Obama: Felix

How do you feel about, now that you know the outcome of the U.S. election and what it means to you as a Zimbabwean, as a world citizen?
As a world citizen, okay, I would say, like, I mean.. it shows that life man, if you believe, you know, things can change especially if people come together.
Like you see the case of America, it's not about.. like, it wasnt the race issue. It's about people, come together as a nation and they believed in Obama and you know they want something for a change which is what has been happening.
What do you think that change is?
That change, like, basically you know people always thought that, like, you know America, it was mainly, eh, how can I say?, you know, the time of Martin Luther King, they came from a time where once Blacks were oppressed. Martin Luther had a dream that one day that dream would come like in a way, this is the way I would say that dream of Martin Luther has become a reality.
I've been following Obama's profile. To me, it seems to me, it sounds like he has a very good education in the senate most of those guys they used to oppose him. Like he's a republican is it?
Obama, he's Republican?
Democrat, yeah, like but in his case he actually brought those two parties, Republican and Democrat together in the senate.
So like for him as a statesman, I think he'll do much better, its not about the political indifference with them but its about bringing all the people together, which if you want something to work you have to bring people together.
Felix is originally from Zimbabwe, working in South Africa. He bartends at Zula Bar on Long Street, Cape Town.

Voices on Obama: Gary and Eve

I’m doing interviews on South African reactions to the victory of the democratic candidate Barack Obama . . .
Eve: It’s what we woke up to this morning. Like Gary and I, ya know, trying to sleep to 10 -that’s all we want to do in life-and John walked out. Little economist, John, walked out of his room and went "Yay, Obama won!" And we were like, "Huh?"
What does that mean to you?
Eve: Ya, well, I dunno what it means to me. It means that my best friend whose planning on moving to the states has, uhm, a new president. She said, well like her husband’s American and she’s obviously African, and she said she has an African-American baby and he’s just delighted.
And so do you think you are affected as a South African by the U.S elections?
Gary: Yes. But I'm not really sure why. I was reading up on it on the internet today and there's a lot of things but I generally, like . . . when I listen to politics, ah, it’s pretty rad and nah, I'm really stoked and it's awesome but uh, but exactly why I'm affected, like I probably wouldn’t be able to tell you, cause I just want to rock.
What’s awesome about? Why do you use those words?
Gary: Um, that I know, I know the gist of why the Republicans were, weresh, were shit. And why the Democrats are rad. And like it’s cool that it’s a black guy and it's just like ya . . . just and the other guy look soooooo boring. [Laughs in the background]
Eve: Also, like McCain is a kind of oven bake chips. That’s no person to rule the free world. And we never listen to the news… never ever ever and today, like, we listened to a good I’d say minute and a half . . . hey hey ‘hows that?’ of the news before we put the next CD in, that’s that’s a lot . . . oh, we heard Nelson. Nelson Mandela said something, cause we discovered that he only speaks in proverbs. He never, like, has actual conversations with anyone. He just says one liners and they’re always, like awesome. What did he say?
Gary: "He shows how..anyone can achieve. Anyone can achieve anything..." Yada, yada, {in Mandela voice} I’m Nelson and leave me alone I’m going back to bed.
Eve: {in Mandela voice} I’m very old.
Eve and Gary make music in Cape Town.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Voices on Obama: Cath and N.D

In response to Obama's victory:
Cath: I feel fantastic. I think the world has turned with Barack Obama and the American presidency ( things can't surely be the same again), and I just think that it's a very, very hopeful time and I'm so happy to be alive at this point.
Cath is a social development consultant based in Cape Town.
N.D: Ya I feel, I’m so amped I’ve been like buzzing, buzzing along 100 percent. Ya, going like a boeing, zooming along doing all my clips, totally inspired by Obama. He’s risen to the seat of influence and power-where he can do stuff. Ya, it’s the time of the time of the great turning. You must read David Korten, The Great Turning. It’s my bible.
N.D. is a cartoonist and comix publisher.

Voting Abroad

Three reasons why I chose to vote in the U.S. elections:

1. Exercise my right

2. Honor and respect the lives who fought for voting rights

3. Be an active citizen for my country and the world

If you are living in another part of the world, take the time to visit and read through

This website will tell you all you need to know about registering, requesting an absentee ballot, and sending it to your city clerk in the last state you registered in. Note: U.S. Embassies may provide a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot if you have not received your absentee ballot, but YOU have to send it through to your local election officials. Each state votes on different issues, so it is important to request your state specific ballot in advanced.

Register and Request your ballot today.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Why does the US vote on Tuesday?


"In 1845, before Florida, California, and Texas were states or slavery had been abolished, Congress needed to pick a time for Americans to vote. We were an agrarian society. We traveled by horse and buggy. Farmers needed a day to get to the county seat, a day to vote, and a day to get back, without interfering with the three days of worship. So that left Tuesday and Wednesday, but Wednesday was market day. So, Tuesday it was. In 1875 Congress extended the Tuesday date for national House elections and in 1914 for federal Senate elections.

Today, we are an urban society, and we all know how hard it is to commute to our jobs, take care of the children, and get our work done, let alone stand on lines to vote. Indeed, Census data over the last decade clearly indicates that the inconvenience of voting is the primary reason Americans are not participating in our elections.

If we can move Columbus Day, Presidents’ Day, and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Holiday for the convenience of shoppers, why not make Election Day more convenient for the sake of voters? First and foremost, it is time to end the deafening silence of good people on this vitally important issue.

So we ask: Why Tuesday?"

Contact your congressional representatives and ask them to make Election Day a National Holiday.


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