Vietnamese Americans are Americans of Vietnamese ancestry. They make up about half of all overseas Vietnamese and are the fourth-largest Asian American ethnic group. The Vietnamese community in the United States was minimal until the South Vietnamese immigration to the country following the Vietnam War which ended in 1975. Early immigrants were refugee boat people, loyal to South Vietnam in the conflict who fled political persecution or sought economic opportunities. More than half of Vietnamese Americans reside in the two most populous states of California and Texas, primarily their large urban areas.
- Large-scale Vietnamese migration to the United States started as an influx of refugees following the end of the war. Early arrivals consisted largely of military personnel and urban professionals (and their families) who worked with the U.S. military or the South Vietnamese government. The next wave of Vietnamese refugees, known as “boat people,” arrived in the late 1970s. Most of these refugees came from rural areas and were often less educated. Many of the Vietnamese refugees who arrived between 1983 and 2004 were initially resettled in states with large immigrant populations, including California, Texas, and Washington State.
- "Vietnamese Immigrants in the United States" in Migration Policy Institute (13 September 2018)
- While California remains the state with the largest Vietnamese population, the percentage of Vietnamese living in California decreased during the 1990s. The downward trend of the electronics industry in which many Vietnamese were employed, coupled with unaffordable housing, prompted the departures. Economic growth in places like Texas, Florida and Louisiana attracted a great number of Vietnamese.
- Vietnamese-Americans who came to the U.S. as refugees more than 40 years ago and their children are mobilizing to help Afghans with whom they feel a kinship at the chaotic end of another lengthy war in Asia.
- In San Jose, the new Vietnamese community was bolstered by access to Asian markets in the area, that had already been established by other immigrant families from Asia. In this way, the Vietnamese community developed less as an enclave and more as an integrated, borderless part of the larger San Jose area.
- In the years since the end of the Vietnam War, Vietnamese Americans – particularly the older generation – have typically aligned themselves with the Republican party because of the GOP’s fervent anti-communist stance dating back to the war.
- "Why are Vietnamese Americans so divided over Trump?" in Al Jazeera (20 November 2020)
- But many first-generation Vietnamese were already conservative to begin with. Having left behind a communist-led country, they may be averse to liberal politics, deeply religious, and invested in the idea of the American dream. Guided by a tide of Vietnamese- and English-language misinformation, however, these radical right-wing views are now quietly held by a not-so-insignificant minority — and are often left to younger, more progressive family members to challenge and dismantle.
- "Support for Trump is tearing apart Vietnamese American families" in VOX (30 October 2020)
- Our parents have been seen as a generation that was just trying to survive in many ways ... and our generation is seen as going past this idea of surviving, but really thriving. And by thriving, I think we're able to speak up.
- Bao Nguyen, "Children Of Vietnamese Refugees Feel Empathy, Responsibility To Help Afghans" in NPR (22 August 2021)
- In Orange County’s Little Saigon, the flag of the old South Vietnam still flies, and the phrase “Ho Chi Minh City” can provoke a dirty look, or worse.
- Even in Orange County, among the Vietnamese American voters who have long been a part of the Republican coalition, the GOP has been losing ground. After an election year in which AAPI voters turned out across the nation in record numbers, there is greater urgency than ever for the party to rethink its approach.
- "GOP confronts big trouble in Little Saigon" in POLITICO (24 August 2021)
- The yellow-and-red-striped banners of the former South Vietnam flew above crowds of rioters all over the Capitol grounds. Many of the flag carriers were Vietnamese Americans who, in support of President Donald Trump, have often used the emblem to express nostalgia for a lost home and opposition to communism.