There really isn’t much more to be said about Kim Davis, the County Clerk who claims her religious beliefs should protect her against demands that she do her job. Let’s face it: when even a Fox News panel concludes that her lawyer is an idiot and her argument without legal merit, her Christian martyr days are probably limited.
As multiple observers have pointed out, if Davis can refuse to do her job because of her religious beliefs, Quaker clerks can refuse to issue gun permits, Amish clerks can deny driver’s licenses…the list goes on. Davis’ defenders seem unable to distinguish between her right to personal religious liberty and a right to use government to deny such liberty to others.
But Davis isn’t the only religious zealot who doesn’t seem to grasp that pesky “job description” concept. Indiana Governor Mike Pence just announced his opposition to the Iran agreement.
Like Davis, Pence is entitled to his views. The problem is that–also like Davis– he doesn’t seem to understand what he’s being paid (with our tax dollars) to do.
Not only does the Governor’s job not include foreign policy, it does include multiple responsibilities which the Pence Administration has consistently ignored: maintenance and repair of the state’s infrastructure, protection of the environment and public health, and day-to-day administration of the state’s bureaucracy (which has experienced unprecedented managerial turnover), to name just a few.
It also includes attention to Indiana’s worsening economy–14.6 percent of Hoosiers now live in food insecure households, up from 14.1 percent in 2013.
Instead of attending to these admittedly prosaic elements of his job description, Pence has spent his time bullying the Superintendent of Public Instruction, establishing a “News Bureau,” hectoring Planned Parenthood, and defending RFRA.
Here’s the “take away” for both of these exemplars of zealotry: if you can’t–or won’t– do your job, you need to quit.