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'Vietnam is not ready for gay marriage,' says Valentine Vu

Gay Vietnamese-Canadian fashion design lecturer who lives in Ho Chi Minh City argues Vietnam is not ready for gay marriage
Nguyen Hoang Bao Quoc and Truong Van Hen whose public wedding in 2012 prompted the government to consult on legalizing same-sex marriage

In response to Vietnam marching ahead of other Asian nations towards legalizing same-sex marriage, a gay Vietnamese-Canadian fashion design lecturer who lives in Ho Chi Minh City said that the country is not ready for marriage equality.

Legalizing gay marriage would not make Vietnam '"cool" when it has failed to acknowledge other gay rights issues', Valentine Vu writes in an editorial for Tuoitre News.

Vu said that Vietnamese society doesn't have the 'foundation' for marriage equality.

'Gay marriage should not be the first stance against introducing gay acceptance into a more or less homophobic culture,' said Vu, who grew-up in Canada but has lived in Vietnam for five years.

'What this country needs is the new face of homosexuality, the courage for gays to come out, the celebration of a positive gay culture, and the introduction of gay acknowledgement in the educational system.'

Vietnam's Ministry of Justice began consulting on same-sex marriage last year after there was an outcry when a gay couple were fined for holding a public wedding.

Despite several government departments supporting same-sex marriage, LGBT rights campaign Le Quang Binh told Gay Star News that legislation is unlikely to pass as it will depend on the support of National Assembly delegates, many of whom have little understanding of homosexuality.

The National Assembly is likely to vote on the issue in 2014.  

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