100 Black Men of America, Inc. stands with the millions of United States citizens and people around the world who oppose President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration.

The plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty reads, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” She serves as an icon of freedom and has been a welcoming sight to immigrants arriving from abroad since 1886.  Every “American,” except for the indigenous peoples native to North America, came to these shores from a foreign land.  Many came of their own volition, while others were forced to leave their native lands because of slavery, war or persecution. These ideas are the foundation on which the United States of America was built.

A ban on immigration runs counter to the words of Lady Liberty and all America represents. To ban those entering our borders because of the religion they practice or the country in which they were born, will only serve to separate families and further divide our nation. Therefore, 100 Black Men of America, Inc. calls on each elected official to stand up and publicly denounce this ban on immigration and work together to develop meaningful, effective and nondiscriminatory immigration reform.

Brian L. Pauling is national president and CEO of 100 Black Men of America, Inc.