Congressman Alan Lowenthal (CA-47) today issued the following statement condemning President Trump’s executive order banning refugees and citizens of Muslim nations:
“I condemn in the strongest terms the President’s executive order banning refugees and the citizens of Muslim nations. This ban, whether temporary or not, is shameful, wholly un-American at its core, and as written, unconstitutional.
“The history of our nation is one written by the refugee and the immigrant; people across the globe who fled religious persecution, war, famine, and poverty. People seeking a better life—one based not in fear, but in freedom and liberty. They chose America, which has long endured as the shining beacon on the hill. Sadly, that light was dimmed this weekend by the President's immigration executive order.
“This ban also makes Americans both here and abroad less safe by perpetuating the false narrative that America hates Islam as a religion.
“It is the duty of the government to protect our nation and our people, but there are ways to do this that are effective, rational, humane, and constitutional. We, as a nation, have done it before.
“In the 1970s and 1980s, thousands of my constituents fled the horrors of war and genocide in Vietnam and Cambodia as refugees. Today, these immigrants and their children are doctors, teachers, parents, students—all integral parts of our nation. They are here because American presidents Ford, Carter, and Reagan stood up and did the right thing.
“Today, we must stand and fight for those same American values that welcome refugees to our country and recognize that our nation is great because it is built by refugees and immigrants from every part of the world.
“Martin Niemöller warned us in his famous quote “First they came for…” about the dangers of remaining silent when others are persecuted. I refuse to be silent. I will not shy away from what I see as a fight for the basic fundamentals of what this country stands for: freedom, equality, and moral compassion. I will do everything in my power to fight against this unconstitutional, un-American ban on refugees and citizens of Muslim nations.”