Buy a wife from Vietnam for $6,000

Discuss

53 Responses to “Buy a wife from Vietnam for $6,000”

  1. Lt. Col. w00t says:

    The image itself is probably a hoax (it’s supposedly from a newspaper reporting on human trafficking) but the actual concept is real enough.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/22/world/asia/22brides.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

  2. Matthew Wong says:

    1. Buy wife.
    2. Set her free
    3. Claim she ran away
    4. Get new wife
    5. Go to 2

  3. Christopher says:

    Can I just say that, hoax or not, I find the very idea deeply unsettling?

  4. kateling says:

    Whether or not this ad is real, these things certainly happen. And to be even more disturbed, look at the comments on the article:

    “you guys should think it in a different point of view… do u see any of these vietnamese girls shown above are sad or crying.. they seems to be happy… and its not actually BUYING but kind of like ADOPTING”

    “by looking at the faces of the girls… it doesn’t looks like human trafficking…”

    “It not human trafficking, These women are not being sold for the purposes of prostitution or sexual exploitation, they’re being sold for the purposes of becoming a wife.”

    Ugh.

    • awjt says:

      Slavery/Indentured Servitude/Sex trafficking…  all the same old shit.

    • huskerdont says:

      Wow. Those people seriously lack empathy. I doubt there’s anything that can be done with people who somehow cannot comprehend the misery of those different from them. And the Internet has taught me that these people are either more numerous than I thought, or that they are over-represented on it.

  5. Navin_Johnson says:

     5. No soul brothers.*

    *j/k. serious subject.

  6. KWillets says:

    Korea has quite a few wife-importing agencies, and a steady series of moral panics like these.  The terms vary, and for the most part it’s voluntary, with meetings beforehand and so on.  The husbands are usually rural farmers.

    There have been a number of abuse, murder, etc. cases involving psycho husbands or wives in these marriages, but there’s also a government program to integrate “foreign spouses” into families and give them support services.

     One of these days I’m going to enroll (edit: in the foreign spouse program).

    • chgoliz says:

      At least in the States, the husbands are usually white men who don’t want a “feminazi” (translation: can’t get a girlfriend, so of course it’s the fault of women as an entire class) and have been told that Asian women are all like geishas….i.e., subservient and interested only in making her man happy in every way.  Which of course is funny if you know a lot of different Asian cultures.

      The fact that you are interested in going this route says a lot about you.

      • KWillets says:

        Actually I meant enrolling in the foreign-spouses program, since my wife is Korean.  I’m the sex slave.

      • CSBD says:

        OMG I had no idea you were friends with my brother… he turned into that after a traumatic brain injury. Went off the evangelical deep end and tried to buy a non feminazi wife… yeah it went “well”

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        Living in SF for years, I know a few cases where white guys married Asian (but lived in the US since childhood) women, apparently expecting them to be submissive. Ouch.

        • niktemadur says:

          The classic “what could possibly go wrong” scenario, I can see the headline:
          White guy marries Asian spitfire, ends up locked up in his own dungeon.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            Certainly, men looking for submissive Asian women should probably avoid women from a country that’s had two women Heads of State in the last two decades, one of whom led the movement that toppled the previous dictatorship. But I guess that, to those kind of people, Asia is just an amorphous blob of Kung Fu and Geisha.

          • niktemadur says:

            Even in SF, really?  As for the “Geisha” thing, at the very least, these men you speak of should take a gander at Empire Of The Senses.  Abe Sada is not a geisha, I know, but it’s still quite a cautionary tale, if one is looking for “submissive”, according to some stereotype.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            Even in SF, really?

            SF is largely populated by people just off the boat from Peoria.

          • ocker3 says:

             The Civilisation of Maxwell Bright was an Excellent film detailing a guy who imported an Asian wife

      • cdh1971 says:

        Very true. The upside – at least just in my anecdotal observation of friend’s parents as a kid, these Asian wives were very adept at persuading these white men to change their ways, and actually make these guys not be such wing-nuts and or assholes. They are not the subservient easy to bully women these dudes think they are — especially in private, especially depending in which Asian culture they were raised.

  7. relawson says:

    Jeeze, that’s cheap enough for someone with lots of money to just get them the hell out of there and set them free!

  8. filteredscenery says:

    Happens all the time in other parts of SE Asia – particularly Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam – and it’s sanctioned by corrupt authorities.  Actually a quick google search found claims that under-16 Vietnamese girls would be purchased for around $400 by traffickers/pimps in Phnom Penh.  This is f**king disturbing.  

    OTOH, testifying from my own experiences, it’s common for wealthy men in SE asian societies to have multiple wives who are purchased from parents for the equivalent of several hundred US dollars.  This seems less disturbing (though still tantamount to slavery under western laws) since it’s more or less consensual – a good deal for the wives since they have a guaranteed livelihood, assuming the husband doesn’t abuse the situation (as happens everywhere).  It still flies in the face of what’s acceptable for the US and similar societies.

    I’m also told that in India it’s standard for cars to come with drivers: when a rich person buys a car, it comes with someone whose job it is to drive the car, on call.   Rented apartments/bungalows have an attached room for someone whose job is to be your servant while you’re living in the place.  This would again be tantamount to slavery or indentured servitude in western countries, but it works in their country – it’s actually a good deal for the driver/housemaid since they have a guaranteed livelihood that way.

    • CH says:

      How is it consencual if the wives are purchased from the parents? Has the bride actually any say in the matter?

      And can the driver/house maid leave the job? If they can then it is not slavery or indentured servitude. It’s just working for somebody.

    • ChicagoD says:

      Meh. I’m sure that a lot of people would have said that slavery/serfdom/indentured servitude, etc. worked in the West until people realized it didn’t. Your focus on the fact that it provides a living may be a more important point. It is not that it “works” in these societies, but that these societies have conditions that make it among the best options available.

    • jarmstrong says:

       Speaking solely to the practice in India of people who “come with” the home: It is my understanding, based solely on television and documentaries, that the custom is that the purchaser of a larger and/or more expensive home is also expected to take care of the financial needs of the caretakers. It is akin to having an au pere, live-in maid or butler, in so far as you provide food, shelter, some other necessities, and a stipend. In return, those persons (commonly an couple) will do maintenance, cleaning, and general livery. There is no prohibition against these people from leaving and they remain in the relationship of their own free will. The foregoing, as I said, is just my understanding, based on secondary sources, of how the system is supposed to work in India. I don’t see how it is indentured servitude if there is no “debt” and ongoing obligation to work your way out of the debt. There appears to be an ongoing quid pro quo, with more of an emphasis of trade for services and supplies, as opposed to cash.

  9. I’m guessing it’s from a late 60s underground newspaper, many of which had some pretty spot-on parody much in the vein of later National Lampoon and today’s The Onion.

  10. Comes with free Bonsai Kitten.

    • Gilbert Wham says:

       Heh. You know it’s STILL possible to troll people with Bonsai Kitten?

      • niktemadur says:

        So Bonsai Kitteh is the gift that keeps on giving?  Sweet.

        EDIT: Thinking about it a little bit, Bonsai Kitten could probably spread like an outraged wildfire on Facebook.

  11. sburns54 says:

    What do they think, I’m made of money? That’s outrageous. Do they have anything in the $300 to $500 price range?

  12. Brad Bell says:

    After reading the NY Times article: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02…

    It is more interesting to consider sex slavery than it is to consider arranged marriages. 

    The value of moral judgement is dependent on apprehending reality in a relatively trustworthy way. 

    The ad was obviously written by someone who was not competent in English. I thought it was a Lost in Translation joke. I laughed. But then, my clothes were all made by a 13 year old Vietnamese peasant girl. She also assembled my Mac. I think I might marry her one day. If the global economy can spare her. 

  13. redesigned says:

    I wonder what percentage of any of these stories/unions turn out well?  Has any documentary been done that followed any x number of these people?

    I assume most cases are as bad as what people here imagine, but i also wonder if any end up escaping a situation that was much worse and are fairly happy being with some sweet introverted guy here in north america?  no?  yes?  maybe?

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      The thing about mail order brides is that you don’t really know the details because they don’t get to interact with people outside the home.

  14. pjcamp says:

    Well at least there’s a warranty.

    Of course, you probably have to dial a bad VOIP connection to Saigon and scare up a supervisor to claim it.

  15. wreckrob8 says:

    @Antinous You can take the people out of Peoria, but you can’t take Peoria out of the people?

  16. donovan acree says:

    So you can rescue a person from a lifetime of sexual slavery for only $6000.00? 

  17. Loren Pechtel says:

    Whether the ad is real or not I’m sure there are similar businesses out there. The desire to marry people from places that are better off is widespread.  I’m married to a woman from China (but *NOT* a mail-order bride) and I see the pattern repeatedly.  More than once I’ve had young women in China express an interest despite knowing I was married–obviously hoping I was interested in trading up.  (And there haven’t been all that many that I’ve met that spoke enough English and weren’t family–as a percentage this is substantial!)  Also, there’s the conversation that’s played out many times when we are out shopping:  Young woman, to my wife: “Can he understand us?”  Wife: “No” (I can pick out some words, I can’t follow a conversation at all.)  Woman: “How do you like being married to an American?”  Wife: “I’m happy.”  Woman: “How do I get one?”.  When the contact has been longer it’s not unusual for them to ask my wife to introduce them to some Americans.  (Not a one of the women making such a request spoke any English, though!)

    Vietnam is a lot poorer than China, the pressures would be a lot stronger.

Leave a Reply