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Bristol Palin Criticizes Adam Rippon for Rejecting Pence's 'Kindness'

Adam Rippon and Bristol Palin

The conservative blogger dismissed Olympic protests of the Trump administration as "the cool thing for athletes to do now."


Bristol Palin's took aim at Adam Rippon in a new blog post.

The daughter of onetime vice-presidential hopeful Sarah Palin criticized the out Olympian for refusing to go to the White House -- and for speaking out against Vice President Mike Pence.

"The cool thing for athletes to do now, apparently, is to snub any invitations to the White House in order to take a stand against the Donald Trump administration," Palin wrote last Friday, after Rippon won a bronze medal for figure skating with Team USA in PyeongChang.

"The most recent snub comes from an Olympic figure skater named Adam Rippon," Palin continued. "Rippon is one of the first openly gay figure skaters to qualify for the Winter Olympics."

Palin then quoted Rippon's reasoning for refusing to meet with Pence from an interview with Independent Journal Review-- namely that Pence purports to be a "devout Christian" but works for a president who demeans people from "shithole countries."

However, Palin omitted a key part of his answer, which is Pence's antigay history. "You mean Mike Pence, the same Mike Pence that funded gay conversion therapy?" Rippon said in a quotation left out of Palin's article. "I don't think he has a real concept of reality."

Instead, Palin tried to frame Pence as the reasonable figure in an exchange that has made headlines before and throughout the Winter Olympics. She praised Pence's tweet to Rippon, in which he said he was "proud" of the athlete and dismissed his concerns as "fake news." She called his message "a great effort on behalf of the Vice President to reach out with kindness."

"I hope one day Adam and the Vice President have a chance to sit down together. In the meantime, I hope Adam -- and all of Team USA -- do a great job representing our nation well!" Palin concluded.

Of course, Palin's conclusion misses the point. Rippon's refusal to sit down with Pence or attend a White House event is due to the Trump administration's attacks on LGBT rights, as well as Pence's own anti-LGBT history. As governor of Indiana, Pence signed a law supporting "religious freedom," a.k.a. a license to discriminate against the LGBT community, that spurred a national outcry and business boycotts.

As for his support of conversation therapy, news sources have pointed to a statement about funding for AIDS prevention and treatment on Pence's website for his 2000 Indiana congressional campaign, which read, "Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior."

Palin made headlines for another reason this week, after news broke that her husband, Dakota Meyer, had filed for divorce and moved out.

Donald Trump Jr. also criticized Rippon, after Rippon said, "I don't want my Olympic experience being about Mike Pence."

"Really? Then Perhaps you shouldn't have spent the past few weeks talking about him. I haven't heard him mention you once???" the president's son tweeted Tuesday. Like Palin, he was either careless or selective with his information -- Pence had tagged the gay figure skater in the aforementioned tweet.

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Daniel Reynolds

Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.
Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.