Thursday, February 23, 2017
Kinh thưa qúy Thượng Nghị Sĩ và quý đồng hương:
Tôi và những người con của Chiến Sĩ Việt Nam Cộng Hòa sẽ không bao giờ quên sự ủng hộ của Cựu Thượng Nghị Sĩ Tom Hayden cho Cộng Sản Việt Nam và sự đàn áp của Cộng Sản Việt Nam đối với người dân Việt Nam. Sau 40 năm, việc làm của các vị như Ông, đã hại người dân Việt Nam và đã ngăn cản những người Việt Nam vượt biên như gia đìh chúng tôi đến đất nước tự do Hoa Kỳ. Chúng tôi sẽ tiếp tục tranh đấu cho tự do, dân chủ và nhân quyền cho người dân tại Việt Nam.
ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF OPENING STATEMENT
Dear Senators and the People:
I and the children of the former South Vietnam soldiers will never forget the support of former Senator Tom Hayden for the Communist government of Vietnam and the oppression by the Communist Government of Vietnam for the people of Vietnam.
After 40 years, the efforts by people like him have hurt the people of Vietnam and have worked to stop the Vietnamese refugees from coming to the United States, a free country. We will always continue to fight for freedom and human rights for the people of Vietnam.
Members, I recognize today in memory of the million of Vietnamese and the hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese refugees who died seeking freedom and democracy. I recognize that on Tuesday you had an opportunity to honor Senator Tom Hayden. With all due respect, I would like to offer another historical perspective.
On Tuesday, instead of participating, I chose to step out of the chamber out of respect to his family, his friends and to you. In contrast to your comments on Tuesday, I want to share what Senator Hayden meant to me and to the over 500,000 Vietnamese Americans who call California their home, as well as to the over 1 million Vietnamese Americans across the United States.
As you may be aware, Tom Hayden chose to work directly with the Communist North Vietnamese Government to oppose the efforts of United States forces in South Vietnam.
Mr. Hayden sided with a communist government that enslaved and/or killed millions of Vietnamese, including members of my own family. Mr. Hayden’s actions are viewed by many as harmful to democratic values and hateful towards those who sought the very freedoms on which this nation is founded.
Were it not for the efforts of the thousands of men and women who served bravely in the United States military and the South Vietnamese military, as well as the efforts of millions of Vietnamese citizens who resisted the communists, I would not be standing here on this Senate floor humbly representing the residents of the 34th District.
In addition to the sacrifices made during war, the efforts of President Ronald Reagan in the 1980’s allowed many Vietnamese like me to seek refuge in the United States.
In contrast to the great many people who fought to defend freedom and democracy, Mr. Hayden supported a Communist agenda and traveled to North Vietnam during the war.
He believed that those who protested the human-rights violations of the Communists were tools of the CIA. It is known that he believed that the war was a conflict between Imperialism, led by the United States and the “free” people of North Vietnam. Former Senator Hayden was profoundly wrong in his support of the Communist.
Members, to this day, the government of Vietnam continues to violate the basic human rights of its citizens. They systematically continue to oppress freedoms of expression, religion and assembly and incarcerate those who speak out for freedom and democracy.
Thank you for allowing me to make my comments. I proudly stand before you as a Vietnamese-American who appreciates the freedoms that so many around the world do not enjoy.