During the first week of Donald Trump’s presidency we have been able to see a glimpse of what the next four years will bring us.
A campaign that was founded on our oldest fears and deepest divisions has moved into the White House. Instead of abiding by the oath to serve the American people, so far we have seen that Trump's administration and Republicans in Congress are blindly ready to follow the demands of one person, undermining our democracy and the values of our nation.
Trump insulted people of every background during his campaign. His attacks to Latinos and the promise to build a wall to divide us from Mexico —and have them pay for it— as well as a Muslim immigration ban were chilling to hear back then.
Trump's executive actions this week show us that he’s willing to tear our families apart, have American taxpayers - not Mexico - pay for the wall, and find a way to implement an un-American policy of banning immigration of Muslins from certain countries.
We can’t be silent when looking at these actions, we must be vigilant and raise our voices against dangerous efforts that will have tremendous consequences during the years to come. Trump lied to the American people throughout his campaign telling them that Mexico will pay for the wall. Trump is also willing to poison the relationship with our neighbor and one of our largest trading partner after canceling an scheduled meeting with President Peña Nieto.
The executive action to ban the entrance of refugees and visa holders from certain countries in the Middle East and Africa is both discriminatory and dangerous.
This policy is not only contrary to our core values as Americans, this plays right into the hands of terrorists who will soon start using this a recruiting tool around the globe. America has always been front and center when it comes to defending freedom and democracy, and breaking the long tradition of opening our arms to refugees in need sends the wrong message to our allies.
It is no coincidence that Trump has done so much to hurt our country during the first week in office, all while having his family company apparently profiting off his presidency.
The Trump administration continues to focus on how to help special interest groups and Wall Street while providing the American people with “alternative facts.” We haven't seen any details on how these executive orders will be funded, and how will they ultimately impact the life of middle class working families.
Republicans must wake up and see how dangerous Trump really is. As we saw this past weekend, Americans of every race, gender, and creed will hold them all accountable at every step of the way.
We won’t easily forget the progress we’ve made, and how a Democratic administration brought unemployment down to 4.7%, and put millions of Americans back to work; why we expanded health care for more than 20 million Americans and brought the uninsured rate below 10% for first time in our history. Those are real facts, not “alternative facts.”
Now It's time to organize, talk to your friends and family, knock your neighbors door and work together to build the strongest grassroots organizing force this country has ever seen.
I want the DNC to lead these efforts, and as chair this will be my goal every single day. We have to be ready to fight back every day, keeping our heads and spirits high, no matter how low they go. The American values are not represented by a president who seeks division, that emboldens bigotry and wants to be respected by using fear.
Trump will try to undermine our democracy, but it is up to us to make it hard. We, the American people won’t be intimidated by his “alternative facts” reality. We will fight tooth and nail every single attempt to roll back the progress we achieved, and we will continue to promote opportunity and equality in everything we do, and that’s why together, we will build the party every Democrat – and every American deserves.
Tom Perez is former Secretary of Labor and a DNC Chair candidate