Good for Mr. and Mrs. Pence

I have more respect for Mike Pence than ever, and even less respect for Feminists than I already did and I thought that was impossible.

My husband moved from assistant manager to manager abruptly when the manager of another store had to be fired for sexual harassment. That manager’s story was that he’d been framed. After sorting out the details and meeting the two female employees he claimed had framed him, we could not entirely agree with him. He had been stupid, utterly stupid, but he had also been lured to his destruction with youthful maleficence. The two younger employees continuously made inappropriate jokes on the job to each other in front of him and to him directly. He let his own guard down and responded with jokes in kind. They constantly visited his office, shutting the door behind them, meaning when they eventually did accuse him, he had no defense.

The thing was, one of those girls expected to get the promotion my husband got. They did not realize that their age (19 or so), inexperience, immaturity meant they weren’t going to made managers anytime soon, and most of all the questionable behavior on their part meant they were never going to be promoted in that specific business. And so when he came in, they were after his job, too. The man who had been fired warned him, as did the manager of another department. So the two girls started their sexual innuendos and inappropriate jokes, and he never smiled, he never responded in kind. Sometimes he stopped what he was doing and stared them down and shook his head and walked away, and when they grew more blatant he told them to stop it. He brought a tape recorder into his office and placed it conspicuously on his desk. When they came into his office and shut the door he instantly turned on the tape recorder- which they objected to. “Then open the door,” he would tell them. We either record this conversation or you leave the door open so everybody can see and hear us.” He refused to be alone with them in any sense- he would not schedule either of them to work late with him alone- somebody else had to be there if he could not avoid having himself work late with one of those two. Eventually one was fired for rewriting the schedule, giving herself more hours and stealing them from a better employee, a single mom who needed them just as much or more. Then she lied about it, but she wasn’t very smart, as she left the original schedule wadded up in my husband’s trashcan. The remaining girl tried several more times to get into his office alone with him, complaining every time about being ‘spied on’ because of the open use of a tape recorder. He would not bend, he would not meet with her alone, he would not give her a ride home from work.

He had to do this, their own behavior and our culture made it necessary.
He was a target.

How much more of a target is Mike Pence? Is there anybody who really doubts that the left would have already tried accusing him of adultery or sexual harassment or something inappropriate if they thought they could get away with it? m

Or here’s another true story- my brother sometimes went hiking with a male friend of his from work. Once when he couldn’t go, his friend said it was fine, he’d go with J, a female co-worker. My brother said he thought his friend was married. His friend scoffed. What difference did that make? He wasn’t dating her, he was just going hiking. What era was my brother from, anyway? Would his wife really not let him go hiking with another girl? He thought it was ridiculous, and suggested their marriage must not be at all healthy under the circumstances.

That was over 30 years ago. My brother is still married to his lovely wife, and his co-worker was divorced that same year, for having an affair with his hiking pal.

I appreciate the Pence’s devotion to their marriage and their willingness to protect their relationship. Boundaries against outsiders are sound policy for a marriage. I’m highly suspicious of anybody who gets as upset about those boundaries in somebody else’s marriage as the left and media (but I repeat myself) seem to be about the Pence’s marriage.

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8 Comments

  1. Cindy
    Posted April 1, 2017 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    It’s bizarre, isn’t it? Then when you realize that their only purpose in absolutely everything they do is to gain political power over individuals by demoralizing them in their daily lives, it all makes sense. They’re not after Pence. They’re showing young couples how they will be treated by their peers if they try to maintain their own marriages (and careers) in the same way. They’re showing women how to take down men whose jobs they want, by claiming discrimination if they refuse to be alone with them. This isn’t new, but it’s rare they find such a high profile target to make an example of. Wouldn’t it be neat (and, let’s face it, probably impossible but for an act of God) if Trump said, “You know what? That’s a good rule. I think I’ll implement it myself, belatedly.” He’d be both politically and personally wise to do so, right out loud so everybody can pile on.

    • Headmistress
      Posted April 2, 2017 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

      That is an astute observation.

  2. Cat
    Posted April 3, 2017 at 12:36 am | Permalink

    This feminist doesn’t care one way or the other about the boundaries Pence set for himself, but I am mildly curious why he shared such information with his interviewer.

    A similar set of boundaries would have done nothing to help Anita Hill or Clarence Thomas–or your husband, for that matter. As your husband learned, nothing short of a complete open door policy during the business day for all 1:1 meetings–and all conversations held within earshot of others–would protect either party from charges of sexual harassment or from engaging in hanky panky or whatever.

    My husband runs a nonprofit and has monthly 1:1 breakfast meetings with both male and female executives from his board. He travels to conferences without me and attends receptions with alcohol and mixed company. I’ve trusted him completely for 21 years. If I couldn’t trust him, or if he felt he couldn’t trust himself, I might feel better if he were to vow to adhere to certain boundaries, but then again if I couldn’t trust him, or if he couldn’t trust himself, how could he be trusted to adhere to those boundaries? I think this is where my understanding of the need or usefulness of Pence’s rules breaks down.

    The skeptic in me says his rules–and the fact that anyone else would know about those rules–is a little odd. I catch a whiff of moral superiority, an attitude I dislike in politicians especially. But again, I really don’t care as long as women do not professionally suffer because of his rules.

    • Headmistress
      Posted April 3, 2017 at 3:44 am | Permalink

      There is nothing Pence could say except that he is now a pro baby killing democrat that wouldn’t give you that whif of moral superiority. But it’s not emanating from Pence.

  3. Kai Jones
    Posted April 17, 2017 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

    The political issue would be easily solved by never meeting solo with anybody, man or woman. It’s not as though the only risk is from women.

    I really don’t understand the objection people have to refusing to attend a party (or event where alcohol is served) without your partner, for so many reasons. Wanting them to be part of the fun; wanting any risk to be shared (and thereby lessened); wanting to help each other in their weaknesses and make each other strong. These are all valid goals, leaving aside the idea that they are the person you enjoy most in the world and why would you want to be separated from them.

    • Headmistress
      Posted April 18, 2017 at 1:04 am | Permalink

      They are an older couple, and the ‘risk’ of a homosexual laison is not something that would have been much on their radar when they started the policy. The culture has changed radically in just the last ten years regarding same sex relationships. And yet, homosexuals are still only 10% of the population, so it is true that the largest risk would be women, not men in Pence’s case. Although another risk is simply being lied about.

      • Kai Jones
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

        I am thinking, I suppose, more of the risk of false accusations than the risk of genuine attraction and involvement.

        • Headmistress
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:36 am | Permalink

          True.

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