Vice President Mike Pence has recently received excessive criticism over what has crudely become known as the “rule.” Something which should be considered encouraging, refreshing and humbling has been completely twisted and relabeled as disheartening, sexists and prideful. Once again the feminist movement is proving to us why they can never be trusted to accurately convey facts and confirming their inability to support anything which goes against their insatiable hunger to destroy any remnant of moral fabric which still exists in American culture.
If the “rule” is to be criticized, then it should be for what it is, not for what it is not. The Vice President did not say that he would never eat with a woman, but rather that he would never eat with a woman alone. Somehow that single word, alone, has conveniently disappeared from the conversation in order to portray the Vice President as a sexist who enjoys demeaning and discriminating against women. Of course, if feminist were actually forced to lookup the definition of sexism, they would be jolted into the reality of realizing the rational behind the “rule” hardly fits the profile. If it was based on the belief that women should not participate in the professional workforce such a declaration would be warranted.
Instead, the best argument feminist could create against Mr. Pence is that his “rule” prevents social meetings which are vital to enabling women to progress through the corporate ladder to achieve their goals. This argument is not only invalid, but is based on a belief that professional growth requires one-on-one social encounters where both individuals are alone. As a corporate leader, my success is partially based on meetings over coffee or a meal, but they certainly do not require me to be alone with that individual. Even at a restaurant, coffee shop or other venue, two people are typically not alone in the room. Meetings of this type may have become the norm in the Western culture of business, but this does not mean they are required to be successful and it has never been true that these meetings must take place in a setting where two people are alone in the same room.
It is interesting to note how feminist are never consistent with their message. One moment they are attacking the culture for creating an environment where men are now incapable of sexually objectifying women, while the next moment attacking Mike Pence for implying that men are capable of controlling themselves. Yet, should it not also be considered that it takes more than just the self-control of one person, but two people. So the “rule” comes down to protecting not only one individual, but two. Apparently what was once called chivalry, is now sexism.
Vice President Pence should be applauded in following this “rule” because it is encouraging, refreshing and humbling.
Encouraging because modern leaders are often taught to set aside personal beliefs or values for the sake of business; often placing their most valued resource, the family, at the highest risk for a company which could never take their place.
Refreshing because many leaders seem to lack personal conviction, especially in regards to moral character and the desire to avoid even the appearance of evil. They are more interested in achieving personal success then preserving their marriage and family, even at the expense of being ridiculed and scoffed.
Humbling because leaders are not typically known for publicly revealing their weaknesses. Perhaps if men and women were honest with themselves about their own inabilities and discarded the notion that “it will never happen to me” when reading about marital infidelity in the workplace, there would be a few less broken homes with devastated children.
Instead of automatically labeling attempts to maintain a professional relationship, as sexism, perhaps people could exercise mutual respect for each other by creating boundaries to avoid statistically proven evidence regarding this type of behavior in the workforce. How many moral failures could could have been prevented if this was acknowledged as a necessary part of maintaining a professional environment based on mutual respect? Perhaps such a rule would have prevented the impeachment of a recent U.S. President.
There are plenty of methods to avoid being placed in a potentially compromising position and avoid giving any appearance of evil. Never eating alone with a person of the opposite sex is good start and so is never being alone with them in a room at the office or in a car. Certainly private conversations are a necessary part of business, so meet in an office with a window on the door or a public place where your conversation cannot be overheard by people who should not hear it. It might seem like an inconvenience, but your spouse, family and reputation are worth the additional work.
Let’s just be honest with each other and help colleagues, subordinates, supervisors and associates to understand our personal convictions so there is no miscommunication about what is happening. If you have specific rules to avoid being put into a compromising situation, be direct with people and ask them to help you find a way to satisfy your need to maintain personal convictions and their need to accomplish professional goals. If it wasn’t for the press skewing public opinion about this “rule” it would probably have been a welcomed breath of fresh air from your business associates.
If people are naive enough to believe this “rule” is sexist, then they have probably prioritized business over their spouse and their career over the family. I would gladly be labeled a sexist for creating necessary, professional boundaries, then to lose my wife and family, even over a perception. Apparently Mike Pence would to and I’m sure his wife and family appreciate his choice.