A recently discovered 2002 interview with politics news outlet “The Hill” uncovered an interesting fact about Vice President Mike Pence – he will not dine with any woman other than his wife. On top of that, he refuses to attend a gathering that is serving alcohol without the company of his wife.
However, Mary Vought, who previously served as Press Secretary to the House Republican Conference under then-Chairman Mike Pence (R-IN), published an article on Washington Post in his defense. She states, “Pence’s personal decision to not dine alone with female staffers was never a hindrance to my ability to do my job well, and never kept me from reaping the rewards of my work.”
Despite this, Internet users are buzzing with opinions on the matter. Many people consider this opinion a pressing matter that affects his current, quite important job, even though the story is 15 years old.
Twitter user Faine Greenwood wrote, “This isn’t about mocking Pence for his lifestyle, it’s about women being denied access to professional opportunities that powerful men control.”
Jonathan Martinez, on the other hand, tweeted in Pence’s defense: “So now he’s being criticized for being a decent husband? Some ppl will hate him regardless of what they read.”
“I think this opinion is kind of irrelevant, it being 15 years old now,” freshman elementary education major Mia Schlottman said. “I don’t think it’s a huge deal, but I can see why people – especially women – may see it as a problem.”
Obviously, Pence’s dining habits, if still true, has implications with him being the ‘second-most-important-man-in-charge.’ His choice to dine solely with men, even in a business setting, speaks volumes about his different attitudes toward men and women.
Frankly, I think if Pence still holds this judgment it is quite ridiculous. Imagine being a prominent female journalist, asking Mike Pence at a public restaurant to interview him for an article, and him respond with, “I only dine with one woman, and that is my wife. Sorry.”
To me, this is not being chivalrous, a “decent husband” or even necessarily sexist – it’s simply childish and immature. My advice to him is this: Wake up; it’s 2017. Men and women can dine alone without a marriage proposal or sex being involved.
Those of you out there in a relationship, I urge you to allow your partner to dine with others regardless of gender – whether it be friends, colleagues or classmates. Don’t limit them in their social interactions.
Conversely, do not limit yourself to only dining alone with your partner. This is both detrimental and demeaning to people that may be trying to help you or seek your help. Eating a meal with someone else is not equated to being unfaithful.