When Vice President Mike Pence visited Iceland on Wednesday, fresh from his disastrous trip to Ireland, he was greeted with a reminder that human rights matter in that country even if Pence would rather suppress them for LGBTQ people.
As his car drove to the Höfði House in Reykjavík, where he met with the president, there were several rainbow flags awaiting him.
Here’s a great example of why I’m proud to be from Iceland ��Mike Pence is visiting the country and everyone is outraged. Mayor of Reykjavik, all the biggest firms and companies, everyone, they’re all flying the gay flag. All Pence will see everywhere on his visit is gay gay gay. pic.twitter.com/XemgBk7TjU
— Heklina (@Heklina) September 4, 2019
An office block belonging to the IT company Advania opposite the historic building had changed its flags on the morning of the US vice-president’s visit.
“We just felt the need to celebrate diversity today and wanted to show that by flying the flags,” Ægir Már Þórisson, the company’s director, told the Icelandic news website Monitor.
Another office nearby, the headquarters for the Efling trade union, had also switched the flags on its masts for Pride ones.
That’s not just a statement from a couple of private companies. Marriage equality isn’t in doubt in Iceland, and even the Church of Iceland supports same-sex marriage. Furthermore, it’s illegal in Iceland for business owners to discriminate against customers solely due to their sexual orientation.
Iceland’s LGBTQ policies, then, are everything Pence opposed while governor of Indiana.
None of that will change Pence’s bigotry, of course, but it’s a reminder that supporting LGBTQ rights doesn’t lead to the sky falling. It doesn’t take away anyone’s religious freedom, either. But given that Pence’s spokesman wanted the VP to get credit just for having lunch with Ireland’s gay leader and his partner, I’m sure it won’t be long before we’re told to praise Pence for not flipping out over the flags.
(Featured image via Shutterstock)