This post is in response to this article in the L.A. Times:
I would like to address the protesters cringing into your city in an attempt to tell your city leaders and residents what to do. Being and American-Vietnamese (note that I’m always an AMERICAN first), having deep family ties in Vietnam and visiting Vietnam numerous times, I can certainly testify first hand about the so called suffering of the Vietnameses at the hands of their communist controlled government.
Putting it bluntly, that’s a bunch of BULLSHIT… Vietnam today is clearly not the same Vietnam shortly after the Fall of Saigon in 1975. Vietnamese have more freedom now than they’ve had in two generations and that freedom will continue to grow as their market economy continues to grow and prosper. Furthermore, Vietnam is experiencing their greatest economic prosperity EVER IN THEIR HISTORY be it communist, democratic or otherwise…
Vietnam’s current central controlled government is a far cry from the Stalinist oligarchy of their past. There’s open elections for Vietnamese city officials much like councilpersons are elected to Riverside or other cities in America. To become a political prisoner in Vietnam today, you almost have to punch a cop in their face while yelling “Down with Communists…” Even so, you might be in jail for less than a week or as soon as you pay off the cop for punching him.
What’s most important to understand is why this organization is protesting in your city. The vast majority of those involved with Federation of Vietnamese Communities and similar organizations are old farts who are still holding a grudge after over 30 years and refuse to believe that their enemies are literally dead or dying. They are a miniscule small portion of the Vietnamese-American community who mastered bringing attention to themselves with the perception that all Vietnamese think and believe as they do when in fact it’s the exact opposite. It’s a personal embarrassment whenever I see these groups continue spewing their ignorance and hatred.
Furthermore, it is YOUR community and NOT THEIRS. Make up your own mind on whether or not you want to establish a relationship with Can Tho, but please don’t these outsiders dictate what you should do in your city.