protests shut down vietnamese american art exhibit

A guaranteed way to provoke controversy in the Vietnamese American community: communism. Specifically, art and communist symbols. Last week in Santa Ana, California, hundreds of Vietnamese Americans demonstrated outside an art exhibit that had featured communist symbols, claiming that the art mocked their painful experiences as political refugees: Vietnamese Americans protest art exhibit in Santa Ana.

Curators of the exhibit, entitled "F.O.B. II: Art Speaks" and commissioned by the Vietnamese Arts & Letters Association, said they wanted to launch a discussion about the freedom of expression in the Vietnamese community, where talk of communism is a taboo. Instead, they got one of the works defaced with red paint, the exhibit shut down by the building owners, and a lot of angry people protesting outside.

The protestors were mainly only Vietnamese residents of Orange County and Southern California (though some came from as far away as San Jose), who chanted slogans and denounced the curators and organizers of the exhibit. More here: Protesters shut down 'F.O.B. II' exhibition.

Now, I respect everyone's right to free speech, on both sides, but the exhibit organizers had to know that this was going to launch way more than just a "discussion." This is still a touchy subject, and you bet your ass there were going to protestors... It's obviously a wound that's not going to heal anytime soon.

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