When the media erupted in its usual ‘Yellow Journalism‘ fashion after James Hooker (age 41) quit his job as a public school teacher, and left his wife and children to shack up with former student Jordan Powers (18), my first thought was that he was going to be the victim of a witch hunt, because there is a double standard when it comes to teachers.
And I was right.
According to the law in California, 18 is the age of consent where one is considered responsible for his or her own decisions and actions in life.
For example, at 18, one may join the military and die for America.
That’s what I did after I graduated from high school, but I didn’t die. After Marine Corps boot camp, at the age of 19, I was sent to South Vietnam, where 58,269 American troops were killed in combat and 153,303 were wounded of the 2.6 million US troops that served there. The average age of a soldier in Vietnam was 19, and more than eleven thousand under the age of 20 were killed.
Why aren’t more mothers protesting this choice by their adult children?
For Powers, when she turned 18, instead of joining the Army or Marines to fight/die in Afghanistan or another foreign country, she chose to live with Hooker, her former teacher from an earlier school year. She dropped out of school and he quit/lost his job, which is what happens to most public school teachers that have an affair with a student that is age 18 or older. If the student is under age 18, the older teacher usually ends up in jail.
However, now a Republican California legislator by the name of Kristin Olsen has introduced Bill 1861 to make it a felony for a teacher to have a romance with a student, even if the student is over 18.
In fact, Mercury News.com reported, “Power’s mother … continues to lobby for a bill introduced by Modesto Assemblywoman Kristin Olsen that would make it a crime for high school teachers to date students of any age.”
In addition, there are currently 23 states that make it a felony for a teacher to date a high school student even if the student is 18 or older.
No wonder America has more people in prison than any other country in the world. If California’s Bill 1861 becomes a law, it will focus only on teachers. This means if Powers moved in with a 41 year-old fireman, policeman, used car salesman, lawyer, doctor or a corporate CEO, while she was still a senior in high school, that would be legal.
If Bill 1861 passes in the state legislature, an eighteen-year-old high school student such as Powers may have a boyfriend age 18 or older, and change them daily as long as the man isn’t a public school teacher.
By focusing on teachers, Bill 1861 is discriminatory. Leaving his wife and children at age 41 and giving up his job to live with an 18 year old might be poor judgment on Hooker’s part, but it is not illegal and never should be no matter the opinions of mothers or others.
In fact, The Economist published a piece on this topic called Rough Justice in America—Too many laws, too many prisoners. Never in the civilized world have so many been locked up for so little.
The Economist reported, “Justice is harsher in America than in any other rich country… America incarcerates five times more people than Britain, nine times more than Germany and 12 times more than Japan… Half the states have laws that lock up habitual offenders for life. In some states this applies only to violent criminals, but in others it applies even to petty ones. Some 3,700 people who committed neither violent nor serious crimes are serving life sentences under California’s ‘three strikes and you’re out’ law.”
Currently in California, a teacher can only be charged with a felony for engaging in a relationship with a student who is under 18 years of age.
Did you know that 60% of public school teachers leave the profession in the first five years and never return? If California’s Bill 1861 becomes a law, that will be one more reason to stay away from the classroom because too many laws makes it a very risky profession—anger a student or a student’s mother, lose a job and possibly go to jail for a long time—all in the name of love with a consenting adult.
Continued on April 12, 2012 in Part 2 of the Mob’s War against Teachers
Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).
His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves
Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).
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April 30, 2018 at 07:35
James Hooker IS a pedophile because he grooms his girls before the legal age of 18. Come on! This man done it to another girl. This started before 18 & we know it. A grown man should not move on a girl that quick also even if his story was true they just hooked up around when she turned 18. Who is the grown up here? He is just a dirty dog in heat! He should have served some time in jail. He needs to let this girl go & let her be a teenager having fun with her friends because let me say this she WILL be having fun before long & not with him for all the lost time she was robbed of. He will be a dirty old man all alone someday. So glad this wasnt my daughter because you think her mother was crazy you havent met me.
April 30, 2018 at 09:39
The U.S. Constitution clearly supports the legal concept of innocent until proven guilty in a court of law by a jury of your peers. And Hooker was found guilty of oral sex with an underage student.
And I know crazy when I meet it because you haven’t met me. I might be crazier than you are.
Then there is this question: When does a child become an adult?
There are two answers to that question
Answer One: when the law says a child becomes an adult – statutory
Answer Two: when God and/or nature decides a child becomes an adult – biological
It’s obvious from the following facts that the biological age of maturity is more powerful than the artificially determined statutory age of maturity.
“Many adults are uncomfortable with the idea of teen sexuality and prefer to remain in ignorance or denial. But in the United States, 46 percent of all high school age students, and 62 percent of high school seniors have had sexual intercourse; almost nine million teens have already had sex. It is critically important for adults to address adolescent sexuality realistically and to recognize that many factors, including socioeconomic status, race or ethnicity, family structure, educational aspirations, and life experiences, affect young people’s behavior.” …
“The term ‘adolescence’ is a concept first popularized in the early 20th century by researchers such as psychologist G. Stanley Hall. Generally, it refers to the period of transition from childhood to young adulthood, but its exact meaning is imprecise. Researchers often use the terms ‘adolescents’, ‘teens’, and ‘youth’ interchangeably. ‘Minors’ is also sometimes used specifically for those youth who by law are considered unable to give consent (typically under age).”
A rational person that thinks with their mind and not their emotions might ask, “If God meant children to stay children up to the statutory age, He wouldn’t have turned them into biological adults capable of having children at such an early age.”
What’s the Youngest Age at Which a Woman Can Give Birth?
A woman can get pregnant and have a baby as soon as she begins ovulating or producing eggs. This typically occurs about a year after they first begin menstruating, which for North American women, usually happens between the ages of 11 and 12. Some women start ovulating late, though, and others, extremely early. The early onset of menstration is called “precocious puberty.”
Hooker was a fool (very bad judgment) to do what he did, and he ended up in prison for it, but in reality, a child cannot become pregnant. Only a biological adult can get pregnant, so statutory laws that define when a child becomes an adult is an artificially mandated age.
This is what I think. I do not care what the age is between two consenting adults as long as they are both legally (statutory) adults. I don’t care if an 18-year-old falls in love with and has a sexual affair or marries a man or woman decades older. But the laws that determine when a child becomes an adult depends on where you live. There are no laws against this … yet.
Hooker was not a pedophile.
Pedophilia. … Pedophilia, or paedophilia, is a psychiatric disorder in which an adult or older adolescent experiences a primary or exclusive sexual attraction to prepubescent children. … Being prepubescent is not the same thing as being preadolescent. Instead, prepubescent (and sometimes child) is a term for boys and girls who have not developed secondary sex characteristics, while preadolescent is generally defined as those ranging from age 10 to 13 years.
Hooker was found guilty of breaking a statutory law where he had, according to his accuser, oral sex with a girl of 17 and that was illegal according to the law but he was not a pedophile according to the definition of that term.
And what is the age of consent around the world and even between states in the U.S.
And if you click the following link and check out the chart you will learn that the statutory age of consent varies across the US from Sixteen to Eighteen so Hooker should have moved to a state where the age of consent was 16 if he wanted to be with younger women. James Hooker should have been teaching in Alabama or one of the other states that set the age of consent at 16. He was a stupid man and deserved to go to jail.
But it is a matter of opinion and not law or God that it is wrong for an older man to be with a younger woman as long as that woman is legally an adult.