On April 30th, Congressman Alan Lowenthal released the following statement on the commemoration of Black April and the 38th Anniversary of the Fall of Saigon:
"Black April is a solemn month for Vietnamese-Americans across the country and for the Vietnamese diaspora around the world. The commemoration of the Fall of Saigon -- a dark moment in time for the Vietnamese people's historic struggle for freedom and human rights -- reminds us that there is still much work to be done to ensure that the basic rights we enjoy here in America are upheld and respected in Vietnam. Our commitment cannot waiver until the ongoing human rights violations in Vietnam end."
"On this day, I am reminded of the sacrifices made by the tens of thousands of Americans, allied forces, and countless number of civilians in defending freedom in Vietnam. I am also reminded of the suffering of South Vietnamese soldiers and civilians who were forced into so-called "re-education camps" as well as the high price for liberty paid by more than one million Vietnamese boat people, close to 500,000 of which died at sea."
"I am wearing a black ribbon on my lapel today to remind us that we must never forget. We must never forget the atrocities committed over 38 years ago, or forget the blatant human rights violations that are still committed today. Our children must be reminded of the struggles and the cost of attaining true freedom. The past drives us to take action. It demands we continue to stand with the people of Vietnam in their struggle for freedom, justice, and human dignity."
Congressman Alan Lowenthal is a first-term Congressman, serving the cities of Westminster, Garden Grove, Cypress, Los Alamitos, Rossmoor, Buena Park, Long Beach, Lakewood, and Avalon in the 47th congressional district.