After gay figure skater Adam Rippon — heading to South Korea to compete in the Olympics for the U.S. — publicly criticized homophobic Mike Pence, the situation has escalated.
Rippon recently gave an inteview where he said Pence, heading up the American delegation at the Olympics, doesn't represent his values. The VP then tried to set up a call with the athlete, but Rippon wasn't interested. Pence couldn't let it go, tweeting the following on Wednesday.
.@Adaripp I want you to know we are FOR YOU. Don’t let fake news distract you. I am proud of you and ALL OF OUR GREAT athletes and my only hope for you and all of #TeamUSA is to bring home the gold. Go get ‘em!
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) February 8, 2018
As many pointed out, Pence may talk the talk when it comes to supporting athletes like Rippon, but there's nothing to back up his words. As part of the Trump administration — and before as a congressman and governor of Indiana — Pence has pushed an extreme anti-LGBT agenda. Pence's policies have led to a dismantling of LGBT rights, where trans students lost governmental protections, trans service members were nearly kicked out of the military (only saved by successful lawsuits), and Trump and Pence's Justice Department argued for businesses to be able to deny service to LGBT customers. Pence's animosity to LGBT people is so intense that Trump reportedly said, when it came to gays, Pence wanted to "hang them all."
Here's how people responded to Pence's olive branch:
Pence is in favor of conversion therapy. This is a fact
— LonzoCarterWilliams (@SeymorePutts) February 8, 2018
I'm from Indiana, it's a fact. He's a homophobic bigot.
— Ret. Wknd Warrior (@ssgsteveh) February 8, 2018
This tweet does not make you a friend or ally to the LGBTQ+ community. We know you by know; your words and by your actions how you really feel about us. Until you change, @Adaripp and the rest of the LGBTQ+ have every right to keep you at arms length. We simply don’t trust you.
— Parallel 50° North (@omg_yay) February 8, 2018
Jesus wept. Literally. He’s crying at your lies, Mike.
— Gregor the Stable Genius Mendel (@GregortheMendel) February 8, 2018
You want to parade him around like a shiny, new toy. You don’t actually care about who he is as a human being.
— Courtney (@oh_cocobeann) February 8, 2018
Save it Pence. Your bigotry is well documented. You shouldn't be in the opening ceremony. @adaripp should carry the flag to show how Americas can succeed even in the face of bigotry like yours.
— Sara House (@SaraHouse68) February 8, 2018
Yes, @VP, because clearly it's all about YOU. Get over yourself. You're not fit to polish Adam's boots.
— elizabeth's head is full of snakes (@ElizabethDeHoff) February 8, 2018