Vice President Pence did not take kindly to reports about the decision of his wife, Karen Pence, to teach art at a private Christian school in Virginia that bars gay, lesbian and transgender students and employees.
Karen Pence began teaching part time at Immanuel Christian School in Springfield, which has anti-LGBTQ policies, does not believe in the scientific theory of evolution and asks employees to sign an agreement including a “Statement of Faith” that says in part: “A husband is commanded to love his wife as Christ loved the church. A wife is commanded to submit to her husband as the church submits to Christ (Ephesians 5:22-33).”
Mike Pence gave an interview Thursday to the Eternal Word Television Network, saying:
“My wife and I have been in the public eye for quite a while. We’re used to the criticism. But I have to tell you, to see major news organizations attacking Christian education, is deeply offensive to us.
"We have a rich tradition in America of Christian education and, frankly, religious education broadly defined. We celebrate it. The freedom of religion is enshrined in the Constitution of the United States. The Constitution prohibits a religious test for holding a public office, and so we’ll let the other critics roll off our back, but this criticism of Christian education in America should stop.”
It is unclear exactly what “major news organizations” attacked Christian education, as he said. The Washington Post published on its website two news stories that provided facts (here and here) and nothing else (though the conservative National Review described them as “critical” in a report that incorrectly identified former Washington Post reporter Lois Romano as still working at the paper as an editor). Other major news organizations, including the New York Times and the BBC, also reported on Karen Pence’s job.
The National Center for Transgender Equality was not amused by the vice president’s comments, responding on Twitter: “We find the school’s *policy* deeply offensive.”
There were other reactions on social media, including this from Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.):
There was this, too: