by WorldTribune Staff, January 23, 2017
A town on the Suonada Sea that calls itself “Japan’s USA” has come under fire on the homefront for its celebration of U.S. President Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Residents of the rural town of Usa in Oita Prefecture formed the “Extravagantly Celebrate the American Presidential Inauguration in Japan’s USA Association” to welcome Trump as the 45th U.S. president.
They put up decorations that included red, white and blue and stars & stripes themes, along with a cardboard cutout of Trump.
The locals were also looking to bolster tourism, hoping to entice visitors by calling the city “Japan’s USA” and then counting on them to stay for their famous “Usa Candy” made from rice and malt.
The only problem: many Japanese see the new president as rather hostile to their nation.
“The display was successful at creating a buzz for Usa, but unfortunately almost all of the feedback was unexpectedly negative,” a report on the event by Rocket News 24 said.
“Emails and phone calls came into the Usa tourist association asking ‘are you celebrating someone who doesn’t seem to support Japan?’ and suggesting ‘maybe you should take another look at the things this guy says.’ ”
The response was said to be rather shocking to those who promoted the celebration. Yuko Yoshitake, one of the event’s organizers, said people should consider the town’s actions “with a kind heart and hoping that people from home and abroad come to visit Japan’s USA!”