FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – This statement was issued by People's Action co-directors LeeAnn Hall and George Goehl in response to the election of Donald J, Trump as president of the United States:
Donald Trump’s election to the presidency is nothing short of a disaster for America. He is a racist, misogynist, and xenophobe. And we, like many of you, fear for our families, our neighbors, our country and the planet. But now is not the time to bury our heads in the sand. There is no time mourn, we must prepare for what may well be the fight of our lives.
Trump’s path to victory was set by decades of Republican fear-mongering and a centuries-long effort by the ruling class to exploit race to divide working Americans from one another. Rampant inequality has fueled resurgent racism and xenophobia.
The economic and human crisis of what is happening across America is real. It makes sense that people are scared and angry, and desperate for change.
The work in front of us is mammoth – and we are committed.
First and foremost, we will stand with the communities of color, immigrants, Muslims and women who Trump has spent his campaign attacking so harshly. People's Action affiliates around the country are organizing vigils and gatherings tonight in the spirit of galvanizing our communities and bolstering our resolve to continue the fight for a more just society. To learn more about these actions, email [email protected] or contact the People's Action affiliate in your area.
Second, we commit ourselves to unwavering resistance to Trump and his agenda. We must hold fiercely to our belief that we can live up to this country's yet unrealized promise of life, liberty, and justice for all. We will join forces with those who share our belief across the country and from the streets to the halls of Congress to the steps of the White House, we will make sure that Trump cannot achieve the draconian ends that he has proposed.
Third, we commit ourselves to win back the hearts and minds of our brothers and sisters who have been distracted by a campaign of fear and hate. We need to listen to our brothers and sisters in communities across the country who feel left out and forgotten, and come together around our shared interests: building strong local economies where families flourish, protecting the land and water that nourishes us, and ensuring that the nation respects the equality and dignity of every human being.
Even in this moment of darkness, there are signs that give us hope:
In Nevada, we elected the first Latina U.S. senator, Catherine Cortez Masto. In Washington, we elected a long-time community champion to the House, Pramila Jayapal. In Minnesota, we elected Ilhan Omar, our first Somali-American immigrant to the state assembly. In Arizona, we removed Joe Arpaio, one of the most vicious anti-immigrant sheriffs in the history of our country.
In Arizona, Colorado, Maine, and Washington significant majorities of voters favored ballot measures to increase the minimum wage to bring it closer to a living wage.
The values that all of these candidates and ballot initiatives spoke to – of shared prosperity and inclusive democracy – are alive and well in the hearts of diverse communities across the country. These victories are a rejection of Trump’s strategy of divide and conquer, of pitting working people against each other across lines of race, class and gender.
American history is filled with dark periods, but out of those periods have come some of the greatest struggles for justice and equality, where everyday people have banded together in pockets of resistance to overcome injustices and move America forward. This is such a moment. We shall overcome.
# # #
People's Action is a national organization of more than a million people across 30 states working for economic, racial, gender and climate justice – and to ensure everyone a voice in our political system. From family farms to big cities, from coast to coast, we’re fighting for community over greed, justice over racism, and people and planet over big corporations.