Mike Pence Reviews the Handmaid’s Tale
As Governor of Indiana, religious freedom was important to my wife, Karen, and myself. We practice our faith knowing it is God’s will that guides us in making decisions, not our own. And the freedom to practice our faith has been so, so important. As our country moves toward religious freedom under the support of our great President Trump and the wonderful, morally upstanding Republicans in the House and Senate, I’d like to think Gilead would be welcome among us. The faithful of Gilead are strong and committed in their faith. I would welcome them to Indiana, and all the other great states who share my belief that the greatest freedom in America is of being able to worship the one, true architect of our moral goodness and progress in this country: God. Our voices are being heard by this new administration. Our yearly March for Life would be proud to walk side by side with our brothers and sisters in Gilead. I want this great country to welcome those who practice their Christian faith openly and without fear. Those who are proud to preach the Word in the streets and among their communities. To witness Gilead’s strong foundation and dedication to freedom of religion is to remind myself how important our right to religion is, and how we are at the same risk of losing it.
It is with this fear in mind that Karen and I begun watching Handmaid’s Tale. Karen has always been a great supporter of the arts. It has been very exciting to see a quality production that shares our values. As some of you remember, I too occasionally indulge in the wonderful creativity of this country. I may disagree with Lin Manuel-Miranda on several things, but I respect his desire to share history with those around him. I commend Handmaid’s Tale for attempting the same thing. Watching the Republic of Gilead gives me hope that many share my opinion. Governing with a strong faith is an asset. Only by using our faith can we ensure that we do the right thing. Gilead shows me my beliefs are as true and strong as ever.
And like our own society; Gilead is at risk from those who want to change our nation from its fundamental core values. A subplot involving a rebellious Handmaid shows how vigilant we must be. Despite being saved from the destruction of the outside world, chosen by God to help the leaders of her community rebuild through faith and righteousness, this handmaid focuses only on her life before and how she wishes to return to the lawless and godless ways of her past. She is too caught up in selfishness and her own secular beliefs to put herself aside for a greater purpose. She sees giving birth to our most precious resource- a Christian Child- as a cruelty upon her. So many in this country who struggle to conceive, who cry out as babies are murdered, envy these handmaidens. They are not only allowed but gifted the ability to bear the next generation of righteous American voters. As a Christian, I know I cannot force anyone to believe. It is a choice they must make for themselves. But her rudeness and disrespect for those who have a higher calling reminds me of many who voted for our opponents this past election. Life is not precious to them. They look at Gilead and see a strong community; a community with values and freedom of religion, and feel only hate for our morals. They want to destroy us, instead of allowing us to live in God’s love and faith. Our faith is being attacked from all sides. Gilead shows how important it is to protect ourselves from the perils of living in a secular world.
The hero of Gilead is a Commander by the name of Fred. Fred is Righteous and filled with Purpose for our Lord. I see a younger version of myself in Fred. He is committed to the cause and strong in his convictions in Gilead. However, Fred is not without flaws. Despite all the resources available to him and strong Christian men surrounding him, he chooses to spend his time inviting the handmaid in for a game of scrabble. This disrespect to his wife is something I could never do- but just as we allow Protestants and Baptists have differences, so must we allow Gilead. I am concerned by allowing his handmaid these secular opportunities she will cause him to turn away from his strong faith and commitment.
Luckily, the commander’s wife is an upstanding Christian woman like my own Karen. Filled with love for the Lord and her faith, and dedicated to her marriage and it’s true purpose- procreation- Fred’s wife is a testament to Christian values. She believes with her whole heart she is righteous and with the Lord. She conducts herself with the proper demeanor of a God-fearing woman. She occasionally attempts to involve herself in Fred’s work- but what wife who loves her husband doesn’t occasionally become concerned he’s working too much or too hard. Fred’s wife is a shining beacon for all Christian women today.
I hope as this administration moves forward we continue to protect Christians here and around the globe, from Methodists to those communities like Gilead, who place a value on human life. Communities that protect women, value and cherish them, give them a higher purpose and help them achieve their full potential as child-bearing Christians. I will do everything in my power as Vice President to ensure those who believe, as the Republic of Gilead do, that God is our leader are able to be led by him, leading the rest of the nation by example. Through our love for those who have not yet discovered God, the way we and the Commanders of Gilead have, I will pray that soon you are as blessed as we are to celebrate our faith openly and triumphantly in America.
For Anna’s thoughts on the latest episode of Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, her review can be found here: