What's the first thing you do when you see a "DO NOT TOUCH" sign, in all caps, on a piece of NASA "critical space flight hardware"? If you're Mike Pence, you proceed to touch it, obviously. Per Gizmodo, a picture taken by photographer Mike Brown for Reuters shows the vice president encountering the hands-off gear Thursday during a visit to Kennedy Space Center, with the sign prominently displayed on the device, then going right ahead and laying his hand on it anyway. No one's yet received an answer from the Pence camp as to why the VP—who was perhaps told too many times as a kid to stay away from hot stoves, or maybe not enough—couldn't resist such tactile temptation.
No matter the actual reason, the internet came quick with the memes, joking that Pence wanted to handle a glowing orb just like Trump had, or could simply be easily distracted by shiny objects. Others, meanwhile, ventured into slightly darker territory, referencing Pence's "white privilege" and his alleged refusal to dine with women other than his spouse. "Suddenly I understand why he won't have dinner with a woman who isn't his wife," one user tweeted, with another commenter noting the machine itself looked "appalled." It could've just been that Pence got carried away in the moment, which came shortly after he gave a spirited speech to NASA employees in which he proclaimed "we will put American boots on the face of Mars" and that "under President Donald Trump, American security will be as dominant in the heavens as we are here on Earth." (Read more Mike Pence stories.)