In the past, any time I ever got involved in a Rally it was because I accidentally stumbled into the crowd after getting lunch somewhere in the city ;- ). Well not today! Today I met up with a group of really cool individuals with some big hearts! The event was “Rally For Refugees”. I know… I know… the subject is difficult even among our community of Vietnamese. For me, it’s about compassion first. It’s difficult seeing so many photos of babies, kids, the elderly living in cold, rain soak camp sites. Don’t get me wrong, I am all about Safety-First as well! Compassion should also come in parallel with some safe measures put in place to “prevent the bad guys” from coming in! It cannot be an either/or situation - it must be both!
Do I trust the system to prevent the bad-guys from coming in? No I don’t… not 100%! However before the rally, an old friend whom I trust on this subject noted the following. The refugees in the camp sites are screened in a rigorous process... “databases maintained by the National Counterterrorism Center, the Pentagon, and domestic and international law enforcement agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Interpol.” In other words, after 4-6 agencies scrub through the mix of people, you get to hand-pick the family (mom/dad/kid). If any terrorist wanted to come to America through this route, they would be waiting for a loooong time in camp! (that terrorist has easier means of getting into the US than chancing it through this lottery route). It’s very hard to trust information on the internet, so I do the best I can. In the end, it’s about the Syrian kid standing in the cold wet campsite he now calls home. In the end, I respect your rights and opinions on this matter. I welcome further discussions on my Facebook site.
So yes, I went to this Rally to support ("pay forward") in whatever way I can for those that helped me, my family and the thousands of other Vietnamese that came to Washington state 40 years ago. If it was not for the Governor Dan Evans, and my church sponsors, I would likely be in some other part of this beautiful country.
There is also a personal reason for rallying for the Syrian kid. I wanted to come to this rally so that I can show my own kid how and why to become more aware of what is around him (currently 11 year old). I wanted to expose him and teach him things that really matter in this world – love, compassion for fellow man, safety-first, work hard, watch out for others, be a good person and try to care about what is happening around you! Well … let’s just say I am a proud dad today! I challenge you to think beyond as well!
[Great seeing/meeting old and new friends: Linh, Bao-Tram, My Linh, Zian, Yeny, Thao...]
Miki is a renowned motivational speaker and author. He appeared in the 2015 Oscar nominated film "The Last Days in Vietnam" directed and produced by Rory Kennedy, the youngest daughter of Robert F. Kennedy. He often speaks to others on the ways in which they can better their lives. His history is well documented in the documentary that shares the amazing story of his father Ba Van Nguyen and his bravery during the last few days in the Fall of Saigon. His message is one of enlightenment and courage. Miki has overcome many obstacles as he and his family worked hard to create a life in the United States while their homeland was being torn apart. Through his father’s example of courage and commitment to a better life for his family Miki is inspired to be the best he can be and be of service to others by sharing his and his family’s experiences in an effort to give hope to all refugees who take the enormous risks of leaving everything behind in hopes of a better life.
Miki is available for speaking engagements on a number of topics and also has a new book to be published soon that will offer instruction and inspiration through the recanting of his life and his experiences in this extraordinary world we all call home. For more information visit http://www.mikinguyen.com