President Barack Obama ventured on a three-day excusion to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. There, the president spoke to Vietnamese youth as hundreds of youngsters gathered to hear the townhall-style press conference.
Topics that emerged from the crowd—cannabis, hip-hop, and the president's good looks.
One young member of the audience cross-examined Obama over his alleged personal cannabis use in the past. “I don't know if that's true," Obama asserted, quickly dismissing the comment with the blanket warning, "Don't believe everything you read on the Internet."
Memes featuring young Obama blowing out a blast have reached Southeast Asia. TIME Magazine once ran a detailed myopic on Obama's rich history of cannabis use in his teens and in college. Obama is candid about teen marijuana use in his autobiographical novel, Dreams from My Father.
A prominent female Vietnamese rapper, Suboi, was the musical guest of the night. Obama, pleased with Suboi's performance, praised the advent of hip-hop music, "which started out as an expression of poor African Americans," he said, adding that hip-hop has now become a “global phenomenon.”
Obama told the young communist citizens that the government's role is not to “suppress” lyrics. For generations, the nation's one-party system has dominated.
Other attendees began their questions with “You're so handsome.” Obama humbly dodged the comments about his appearance. Obama also spoke about the environment and the role of western industrialized countries. Obama's comments about human rights were surprising aired on state-run TV.