What do Democrats think of the Vietnam War?
Irony of history
It is an irony of history that the Trump administration and the US Department of Homeland Security are now trying to deport Vietnam War refugees - either just those who have long served their sentences for crimes that were long in the past, or perhaps even more - is an irony of history. It was they who supported the US armed forces in South Vietnam or at least did not want to live in a communist-ruled Vietnam and therefore turned to the then ready-to-take United States.
Together with many other Asian migrants in the USA, they had worked their way up. With hard work and a focus on educational success, they became a »model minority«. In recent years the "tiger moms" have become a household word in US journalism and popular sociology. The word describes the strict upbringing, the performance culture and the unconditional will for advancement that many Asian mothers in the USA inoculated into their children. The community lived the American dream.
For this reason, the Vietnamese community in the United States, like that of the anti-communist Cubans in exile in Miami, has been a solid supporter of the Republicans in recent decades.
That has already changed in recent years - thanks to Donald Trump. Data from the National Asian American Survey show that, unlike in previous decades, a majority of the Vietnamese-American community voted for the Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016. But almost a third quarreled with their choice and were unsure.
That should change now. If Donald Trump's merciless deportation policy even tears families apart because of minor crimes, not only young Vietnamese-Americans, who only know Vietnam from their parents' stories or from vacation, should finally defer to the Democrats, but also their parents.
With Trump's strategy of serving the prejudices of his racist white base, the Republicans are losing one of the last migrant groups that the "Grand Old Party" still supports. But the US Vietnamese are probably negligible for Republican electoral strategy: there are only about two million of them in the country. White racists, on the other hand, are in the millions.
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