“Karen and Mike Pence’s astonishing moral hypocrisy”

“Karen and Mike Pence’s astonishing moral hypocrisy” January 18, 2019

 

Young LDS women
Young Latter-day Saint women. (LDS.org)  Sometimes, in such contexts, a reference to “Stepford Wives” is a permissible substitute for an allusion to “The Handmaid’s Tale.” But written federal authorization may be required.

 

This astounding editorial, by one Clay Cane, appeared on the CNN website on Friday:

 

“Karen and Mike Pence’s astonishing moral hypocrisy”

 

It seems that the wife of the Vice President of the United States is about to begin teaching art at a Christian school in Virginia, and that some folks in our country are going to be needing their smelling salts, a large supply of sedatives, and perhaps some artificial resuscitation in order to cope with the horror of it all.

 

Now, first, let me say — for those who may have missed my saying so the first twenty-two thousand times — that I’m not a fan of President Donald J. Trump.  A lifelong and very serious conservative, I didn’t vote for him, and I find many things about him revolting.  Accordingly, therefore, I haven’t been altogether positively impressed by Mike Pence’s excellent imitation of a lapdog.  (Of course, I realize that Vice Presidents are properly intended to be more or less invisible, without stances or personalities of their own, their chief function being to wait around quietly while attending the occasional funeral, in case the President dies or is incapacitated.  It’s one of the reasons that I’ve never aspired to be Vice President or even an ambassador.  I prefer speaking for myself rather than for others.  I’m inclined to agree with the statement attributed, perhaps not quite accurately, to Vice President John Nance Garner, who is said to have described the Vice Presidency as “not worth a bucket of warm spit.”)

 

So I’m sympathetic to the charge of hypocrisy that this article levels against the Pences and, by extension, against many of their fellow Evangelical Protestants, who are horrified by the grinning sexual amorality of Bill Clinton but who seem serenely indifferent to, even defensive of, the unashamed life-long promiscuity and infidelity of Mr. Trump:

 

“For all their professed beliefs, Pence, and his wife, show unwavering support for a man who has been married three times, divorced twice, has had five children with three women and who has been accused of (though denies) paying a porn star and a Playboy model hundreds of thousands of dollars to conceal affairs he’d had with them. . . .  It comes down to this: If the Pences love their God so much, then they would not sit in a White House with a man who shows no moral compass and said he never asks for forgiveness.”

 

Quite so.

 

But the author of the article, Mr. Cane, isn’t content to point out the obvious double standard manifested by many Evangelical and other supporters of Donald Trump.  He goes further, attacking traditional Christian morality altogether:

 

“Like a real-life setting for The Handmaid’s Tale, Immanuel Christian School insists applicants initial a pledge to ‘live a personal life of moral purity.'”

 

Can you imagine the sheer revolting monstrousness of such a thing?  “Personal moral purity”?  Self-discipline in matters sexual?  How awful!  It should be illegal.

 

(I note in passing that, in such contexts as this, reference to The Handmaid’s Tale appears to be legally required by some federal agency or other.  It almost never fails to appear.)

 

“Listen to what else the pledge says: ‘I understand that the term “marriage” has only one meaning; the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive covenant union as delineated in Scripture.’ It asserts that God intended sexual acts only between ‘a man and a woman who are married to each other.’ It identifies ‘moral misconduct’ that would disqualify employees as premarital sex, cohabitation, extramarital sex, homosexual or lesbian sexual activity, polygamy, transgender identity, any other violation of the unique roles of male and female.”

 

It scarcely needs to be said that such ideas are anathema to all right-thinking people.

 

“This language is disgusting and insults millions of taxpaying American citizens, many who have served their country. That it is acceptable to the wife of the man who is a heartbeat away from the presidency should horrify and alarm all Americans.”

 

Of course, Mr. Kane admits, this might still be considered constitutional:

 

“The school where Karen Pence will work — and indeed she has taught there in the past, for 12 years — does have a legal right to its brand of hate.”

 

This, friends, is a foretaste of the new world into which we’re entering.  It’s a world of intolerant demands for tolerance and baseless but hateful accusations of hate.

 

“Karen Pence, Are You Now, or Have You Ever Been, Part of a Christian Ministry?  On the intolerant critics of the second lady”

 

“Love Is Not Hate: Just because you disagree with Christians doesn’t mean they harbor animus against you.”

 

Granted, the items below concern Canada.  But I found this decision of Canada’s Supreme Court troubling just a while ago, and even a bit horrifying:

 

“Canada’s Supreme Court Rejects Country’s Only Christian Law School: Trinity Western University’s loss over its LGBT stance is seen as a blow to religious freedom.”

 

“Trinity Western loses fight for Christian law school as court rules limits on religious freedom ‘reasonable’: Supreme Court of Canada says 7-2 decision will ensure open access for LGBT students”

 

You can read Trinity Western University’s “Community Covenant Agreement” here”

 

“Community Covenant Agreement: Our Pledge to One Another”

 

In the relevant areas, TWU’s Community Covenant isn’t significantly different from Brigham Young University’s “Honor Code.”  (I actually prefer the title “Community Covenant,” myself.)  Is the fate of Trinity Western University’s proposed law school a harbinger of things to come in the United States?  I fear that it may be.

 

 

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