Over the last few months, US Ambassador Ted Osius and his husband Clayton Bond have become the most prominent gay couple in Vietnam.
The couple, who have a toddler son and have recently adopted a baby girl, have become ambassadors for the LGBT rights movement in the Southeast Asian country.
The communist government of Vietnam abolished its ban on same-sex marriage soon after the couple arrived in the country, though it stops short of officially recognizing same-sex marriage.
The country is also becoming more and more tolerant of pride events and is opening up to the “pink dollar” by finding more and more LGBT travelers visiting the country.
While a small number of celebrities have held same-sex weddings, Osius and Bond are the most prominent gay couple in Vietnam, said Tung Tran, director of ICS, a Ho Chi Minh City-based group that advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights.
The couple regularly appear together at official functions and Osius always introduces Bond as his husband. “This is a core interest of ours with regard to human rights,” said Bond, 39. “People see us as an openly gay couple with kids serving our country. I hope people find that inspiring,” he told Bloomberg.
“A lot of young people have reached out to me on Facebook, to say: ‘We are happy to see somebody who is gay and is happy in his personal life but also has had professional success’,” Osius said in an interview. “I don’t think of it as advocating as much as supporting Vietnamese civil society in doing what it is already doing.”
by Fridae Editor