The private Christian school that just hired second lady Karen Pence to teach art part-time requires all potential employees to affirm their belief in certain religious convictions that uphold the school’s policy to ban homosexual and transgender people from attending or teaching at the school.
The contract is part of the school’s employment application, as The Washington Post reported, and it asks applicants to sign off on beliefs that include recognizing marriage as having “only one meaning; the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive covenant union as delineated in Scripture.”
“Moral misconduct which violates the bona fide occupational qualifications for employees includes, but is not limited to, such behaviors as the following: heterosexual activity outside of marriage (e.g., premarital sex, cohabitation, extramarital sex), homosexual or lesbian sexual activity, polygamy, transgender identity, any other violation of the unique roles of male and female, sexual harassment, use or viewing of pornographic material or websites, and sexual abuse or improprieties toward minors as defined by Scripture and federal or state law,” the application says.
The language was first noted by HuffPost.
Pence likely had to sign off on those beliefs in order to gain employment at the school, where she previously taught for more than a decade while her husband served in the House. Pence’s spokeswoman told the Post that “attack(s)” on the “school’s religious beliefs” were “absurd.”
While similar mandates are common practice at many Christian-affiliated schools and universities, — as George Washington Law School professor Robert Tuttle notes — the employment clause is notable given the vice president’s storied past of support for the anti-gay agenda.
As governor of Indiana, Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law, effectively making it legal for businesses to discriminate against LGBT people because of the owner’s religious beliefs. As a congressman, he voted against the repeal of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” rule and co-sponsored the proposal of an amendment to the Constitution that would define marriage as between one man and one woman. He’s also offered veiled support for gay conversion therapy, a psychologically damaging practice that’s banned in most states.