Allies of Karen Pence are speaking out to support her decision to teach art at a school that bans LGBTQ faculty, staff, students, and parents.
Earlier this week, news broke that Pence took a job teaching art at the Immanuel Christian School in Virginia, a kindergarten through eighth grade school that requires parents and job applicants to sign documents stating that they disavow “homosexual or lesbian sexual activity,” “bi-sexual activity,” and “transgender identity.”
Criticism was swift, with HRC’s JoDee Winterhof saying that the Pences “never seem to miss an opportunity to show their public service only extends to some.”
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But now people associated with Pence are coming out in support of her decision to work at a school that teaches LGBTQ students that there is something deeply wrong with them.
“To see major news organizations attacking Christian education is deeply offensive to us,” Mike Pence said in an interview with EWTN, a Christian cable network, implying that “Christian education” requires discrimination against LGBTQ people.
“We have a rich tradition in America of Christian education, and frankly religious education broadly defined. We’ll let the other critics roll off our back, but this criticism of Christian education in America should stop.”
Tony Perkins of the SPLC designated hate group Family Research Council (FRC) also came out in support of Karen Pence, calling her critics part of the “totalitarian Left.”
“Immanuel is in the business of teaching Christianity,” he wrote in a rant. “What would be the point of a religious school if it didn’t? This ‘immediate, visceral reaction’ shows just how far the Left will go to shame people of faith into silence.”
The point of a Christian school could be to give students a decent education like other students get.
Unless, like Mike Pence, Perkins believes that “the point” of Christianity is to be anti-LGBTQ.
Which is the opposite of the approach that Representative Greg Pence (R-IN), Mike Pence’s brother, took when asked by TMZ if Mike and Karen Pence are anti-LGBTQ.
“No, they are not,” he said flatly.
Well, that settles that.
The Immanuel Christian School requires job applicants to affirm that they’re born again Christians and follow a list of “standards of behavior.”
One item on the list focuses on sexual purity, and applicants must promise to refrain from “homosexual or lesbian sexual activity, polygamy, transgender identity, any other violation of the unique roles of male and female.”
Divorce is absent from the list of banned behavior, which is fortunate for Karen Pence, who is currently in her second marriage.
Parents must also agree to refrain from “participating in, supporting, or condoning sexual immorality, homosexual activity or bi-sexual activity, promoting such practices, or being unable to support the moral principles of the school.”
The Trevor Project – an organization that runs a suicide hotline for LGBTQ youth – reached out to the school by sending them 100 copies of A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, a children’s book released by John Oliver about the Pences’ bunny. In the book, the bunny falls in love with another boy bunny.
“A heartfelt note that encourages the school’s leaders to accept LGBTQ young people” was included in the package, the Trevor Project said.
The Trevor Project sees firsthand the effects of the school’s anti-LGBTQ policies. But it’s unlikely the school library has an LGBTQ corner.
Lucas Acosta, the LGBTQ media director for the Democratic National Committee, said in a statement: “School should be a place where every child feels welcome, free to identify, and empowered to learn without fear or distraction. No child should fear expulsion, discrimination or any other retribution by school officials for coming out or allying with LGBTQ people.”
“By teaching at a school that bans LGBTQ parents, teachers, students, and allies, Karen Pence is actively supporting and promoting an institution that endorses discrimination.”