1. romatically,sexually, or emotionally attracted to both men

Topic: EducationStudent
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Last updated: September 12, 2019

1. Introduction” The wings stand for the human’s dream to live free. Rainbow colour is the proud of LGBT people. It also reflects the respectable diversity in life.

..” (Nguyen, 2007, p.33). Indeed, Rainbow colour is the symbol of LGBT community not only in Viet Nam but also in other countries in the world. LGBT is the abbreviation for Lesbian, Gay, Biexual, Transgender. (Oxford dictionary, 2013).

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In fact, LGBT community which is known as the second home for anyone encountering problems relating to their natural sexual orientation, is also the place where they can confide their stories in each other and find sympathy from peers. Yen (2013) asserted that there had been significant changes in the case of the LGBT community in Vietnamese society in the last two decades. Today, although it is not a newbrand matter, LGBT is still believed to be a sensitive issue in Viet Nam because there remains the public’s stigma toward LGBT people, which makes them meet many challenges in their lives. Therefore, this research paper, with the aim of bringing changes in the social attitudes, will provide information about the definition of LGBT, overview of LGBT community history and public perceptions in Viet Nam. 2. Discussion of findings2.

1. Definition of LGBTThe definition of LGBT derives from the abbreviation of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (Martos, Wilson & Meyer 2017). In order to grasp more understandings of that, the LGBT Helpline (n.d) launched into a detailed explanation of each term.Lesbian: a lesbian woman is one attracting romantically,sexually,or emotionally to another woman.

Many lesbians prefer to be called lesbian rather than gay.Gay:a gay man is a person attracting romantically,sexually,or emotionally to another man. Gay can be used in order to imply to lesbian, gay and bisexual people; however, many women have a tendancy to prefer to be called lesbian. Moreover, most of gay people do not want to be called homosexual becuase the word “gay” can closely reflect their identity.Bisexual: a bisexual one is a person who is romatically,sexually, or emotionally attracted to both men and women.

Transgender: an umbrella term is used to indicate people whose gender identity ( a person’s internal feeling of being male or female, both, or another gender) and gender expression ( the external characteristics and behaviours such as dress, appearance, mannerism, speech pattern… ) differs from those usually related to their birth sex ( biological sex).

However, not anyone whose appearances or behaviours are gender-atypical will be considered as a transgender person because transgender people can live in another gender temporarily or permanently. In other words transgender people can identify as transsexual ( people live or wish to live full-time as a member of an other gender rather than gender assigned at birth ) and transvestite ( people usually wear clothes associated with a different gender ) or another gender. In this paper, I also want to distinguish the terms between LGBT and ” queer”, which in turn has several differences with LGBT.

In fact, the differences between the traditional and common definitions causing the slight misunderstandings for the public; however, LGBT stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and its members as well as communities, while the term “queer” includes lesbians, gay men,bisexuals, transpeople, intersex persons, the radical sex communities and many other sexually transgressive explorers ( UC Riverside, 2003 – 2004).Equally important, according to Institute for studies of Society, Economy and Environment (2012), local Vietnamese people usually express these terms LGBT in other interesting ways:Bi/ Sec-bi/Phem : a person whose biological sex is man loving another man ( similar to lesbian)Nô m?t/g?n th?ng: means straight girlsBai: a person who have emotional and sexual associations with both males and females.( similar to bisexual)Pê ?ê: a person who is a female-to-male ( FTM) or a trans man, or male-to-female (MTF) or a trans woman.Ái nam ái n?: half man- half woman ??ng tính: homosexuals or same-sex Gi?i tính th? ba : ” third gender” is the term refering to identities existing outside traditional constructions of gender.

2.2. Overview of LGBT history in Viet NamThe first hint of homosexuality dated back to the sixteenth century, during the Mac dynasty. In 1476, there were two women who were believed to have sexual intercourse, which led to the other woman’s pregnancy (USAID, 2014). Another more specific evidence is the case of King Khai Dinh of the Nguyen Dynasty ( 1885-1933).

According to “Stories about Kings of the Nguyen Dynasty” – a book written by Ton That Binh and published in Viet Nam in 1993, Ton argued that King Khai Dinh had homosexual behaviours. Today, finding a copy of the book is out of question; however, it is found at the University of Michigan library in Ann Arbor (Yen, 2013). As Ton (1993) argued, King Khai Dinh was sexually attracted to men in spite of having twelve wives. He was described that he liked to watch male perform, preferred wearing clothes like a woman and loved covering himself in jewellery. He also was indiffferent in bed with his wives and concubines. From evidences aforementioned, we can see that like in other countries around the world, Viet Nam’s history recorded homosexualities and non – normative gender identities. During prehistoric times, people held local festivals to encourage sexual exploration, even homosexuality because they felt that sexuality was harmless and harmony with nature. Until modernity, the Vietnamese did not express any particular prejudice to LGBT people.

However, it was not until the advent of Buddhism and Confucianism, sexual ralations became offensive, which made them find themselves abandoned in the society. In the twentieth century, the developments of urban areas give LGBT people places in order to gather (USAID, 2014). In means that LGBT community has become more socially visible in Viet Nam.During the period of the Viet Nam War (1945-1975), homosexual activities was criticized in the Southest Viet Nam although “Vietnamese homosexuals meet openly and regularly in a luxury restaurant in downtown Saigon” (Heiman, Elliot, Cao, Le, 1975). However, following the Revolution policy, socialists lauched campaigns to support equal rights for men and women because they argued that LGBT people’s activities were considered immoral. What’s more, LGBT community’s problems were not resolved in any legal documents, which led to too much confusions and obstacles for local goverment officials as addressing cases relating to the LGBT community.

 According to USAID (2014), on April 1997, the first public homosexual wedding between two men was organized in Ho Chi Minh city. On June 1998, a legislation of banning homosexual marrige was passed by the government. In 2002, Ministry of Lobour listed homosexuality as a “social vice”. Until 2012 – the year remarking the first time when the government allowed LGBT people to get maried, open workshops and others.2.

3. Public perceptions on LGBT community in Viet NamFirst of all, according to USAID (2014),Vietnamese culture have not conceptualized abnormal sexual instinct of LGBT people, which makes them face discriminations and unqualities from the rest. Although they always try to live as a human, most of people consider their existence as “social evil”. This term indicates that their actions and behaviours are against the laws, agaist social forms and moralities, even can have negative impacts on others and lead to undesired consequences for health and morality of individuals, groups as well as the whole society.

As the result, LGBT people’s desire for sex and sexual practice become offensive and unacceptable. More importantly, they also lead a dangerous life and unsustainable love. In fact, there are some cases that LGBT people are robbed and murdered as they are come across on the streets, at one – night – stand on bar. Nguyen Thi Nam (2011) shared that with LGBT people, their love always become ups and downs, is often not supported by society and family, receive no sympathy as well as understanding in their lives. Therefore, maintaining a sustaniable love for them is nearly impossible; however, from my point of view, this problems can be changed if there are less prejudiced attitudes toward LGBT people.Secondly, LGBT communities were believed to have been at high risk of HIV/AIDS. They are deserted by their society as many adverse opinions imply that LGBT people are “the disease”, “trend”, “confused”, “immoral” that are used to discriminate these vulnerable people. Morever, these negative attudes are hard to eliminate because of the believes of traditional cultures, custom habits, the holy of religions (Yen, 2013).

Between 1992 and 2005, the number of the case of HIV/AIDS experienced a sharp increase. In response, the goverment focused on one high – risk population, in particular, LGBT people, which had conflicting influences on this community. As a consequence, they found themselves depressed, led a hidden life and was difficult to reach health services as well as educational programmes. Nevertheless, in 1990, the Vietnam Ministry of Health plan confirmed that like in most other countries, homosexual behaviours are likely to exist in Viet Nam, but there are no obvious evidence to prove the contribution of LGBT people to the spread of HIV/AIDS in Viet Nam or they also are patients (USAID, 2014).

Therefore, it is unfair for them as suffering from these suspicions and discriminations from the rest of the society.Finally, the needs and relationships of LGBT people are ignored and less concerned. In my opinion, they also are humans like us, they also have desire for love and being loved, for living in free and being respected, for marying and having children…

that are basic rights of human beings; however, with them that rights become luxurious dreams. Yen (2013) asserted that although a tiny proportion of population is open-minded with them, the majority of the Vietnamese social’s stigmas to LGBT people are discriminating. Even, when regconising their children were homosexual, bisexual, transgenders, many parents felt angry, painful, embarrassed and confused. Some tried to find ways to help their children, some do not care about them, even abandon them. They also had no legal rights to be loved, to get married and to have a happy and sustainable family.

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