Scottish Daily Mail

Isle at war

Rival campaigns split locals on Lewis over Trump’s race for White House

- By Mike Merritt

HIS controvers­ial opinions have split America as he bids to become the next president. Now Donald Trump has even managed to set islander against islander on his ancestral home in the Outer Hebrides.

The Republican candidate’s mother, Mary Anne, was originally from Lewis and some of his cousins still live at Tong, near Stornoway.

One of them, Calum Murray, has shown his support by ‘liking’ his campaign on Facebook.

A page titled ‘Isle of Lewis supports Trump for president’ has now appeared on the social media site – but has received only 43 ‘likes’.

A statement on the page says: ‘ Donald Trump is a straight talker who lets them have it right between the eyes. A common trait on the Isle of Lewis where his mother came from.’

But other i slanders have responded by setting up a separate page titled ‘Isle of Lewis DOES NOT support Trump For president’. By last night, it had collected more than 500 ‘likes’.

It describes itself as ‘an alternativ­e page for “straight talking” Leodhasach­s’ – a local term for the 18,500 people of Lewis.

A follower on the pro-Trump page wrote: ‘When did you last see a politician that could get the emotions going like Trump?’

To which Donald Macdonald replied: ‘Some of the early footage of Hitler perhaps?’

On the anti-Trump page, Sandra Staniland wrote: ‘How can anyone take him seriously?’

But Kevin Fordyce said: ‘I actually like him. He will work well with Putin.’

Foll owing a number of requests from the media for interviews, the anti-Trump page was taken down.

The pro-Trump page was begun by evangelica­l Christian Derick Mackenzie. His brother Donald has been missing since 2010 when he disappeare­d while looking for Noah’s Ark in Turkey.

Father-of-five Mr Mackenzie,

‘I just click with his approach’

51, of Stornoway, said: ‘A lot of people claim to be ashamed that Donald Trump has links to Lewis because of the way he talks. But they are not thinking it out, they don’t want to know what he really stands for.

‘I started the page to show how I felt and hoped others would feel the same too. It’s all about honesty. I think he’s an honest man.

‘I did not even know there was an anti-Trump Facebook page until my daughter told me. I will not be taking mine down.

‘Time will tell if his links with the island will help – but he seems to have a soft spot for here. I j ust click with his approach – though not necessaril­y how he says it. I feel his approach is very much a Lewis approach in style. He is not intimidate­d by what people say, and I’m impressed by that.’

Mr Trump’s mother, who was born in Tong in 1912, emigrated to America, where she met and married property magnate Frederick Trump.

Eight years ago, the presidenti­al candidate visited his late mother’s birthplace. But Mr Trump, who declared he felt ‘Scottish’, spent only a couple of minutes at her house, four miles from Stornoway, after flying in on his personal jet halfan-hour earlier.

He revealed during the trip that he had been to Lewis once before as ‘a three or four-yearold’ – but could remember little about his visit.

His mother, who died in August 2000 at 88, was a native Gaelic speaker and Mr Trump said: ‘ She would have come back, but she met a great guy in my father.

‘She had a great romance and a great marriage. She never lost her feeling for Scotland. She loved Lewis. She never forgot her roots.

‘I had a great mother who was a beautiful woman and a great woman in many ways. She was a great inspiratio­n.’

 ??  ?? Back to his roots: Donald Trump visited his mother’s old home on Lewis in 2008
Back to his roots: Donald Trump visited his mother’s old home on Lewis in 2008
 ??  ?? Divisive figure: US presidenti­al hopeful Donald Trump has split the community on Lewis, as shown on rival Facebook pages
Divisive figure: US presidenti­al hopeful Donald Trump has split the community on Lewis, as shown on rival Facebook pages

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