THE love story of 41-year-old James Hooker, until recently a high school teacher, and 18-year-old ex-student, Jordan Powers, has received huge public attention and flooded the internet with negative comments and condemnation of Mr. Hooker world wide.
Mr. James Hooker has resigned from his teaching job at Enochs High School in Modesto, California over the scandal and has left his wife and kids to live in an apartment with Jordan, who, incidentally is a classmate of Hooker’s 17-year-old daughter.
When it comes to matters of the heart, I'm usually very cautious about passing judgement on anyone presumed to be inappropriately in love. The human heart doesn’t depend on one’s age, color, creed, or socio-economic status in order to fall in love. Love's domineering passions defy logic. It's not something to be understood. It just has to be accepted as it is.
After listening to the ABC News interview in which Jordan herself openly defended the affair, insisting that nothing physical happened prior to turning 18, I felt that Jordan's mother need not pursue the matter further. Jordan wasn’t reading a prepared statement. She was not under threat. She made those statements on her own free will. I do sympathize with Jordan's mother for the embarrassment, and pain, however, I think her crusade against Mr. Hooker is irrelevant considering her daughter's stand on the issue.
People are attacking Mr. Hooker as a manipulator and a selfish man. There's no doubt about him being an opportunist, and a shameless man of weak morals. However, the one question no one seems to be asking is whether Jordan’s mother, Tammie Powers, never had the slightest suspicion about an unusual relationship between her daughter and Mr. Hooker until now. I’m inclined to believe that she was aware of the relationship and she probably had been protecting it until it got this far. There seems to be elements of condoning and conniving on her part.
Tammie Powers is reported as saying she’s convinced that James Hooker’s relationship with her daughter began before Jordan was of legal age. She allegedly cited “a photo of her daughter on Hooker’s lap and text messages, emails and phone records exchanged between the couple that predated her daughter’s 18th birthday.” When did she first become aware of the said photo and the text messages? Was it before Jordan turned 18 or after? And if before, did she notify the school authorities?
It's clear that Jordan had a personal cell phone before her 18th birthday. By law, phone service providers are not allowed to accept a customer who is not of legal age. If the cell phone was not provided by Jordan’s mother, then someone older than 18 might have gotten it for her. Was it Mr. Hooker? And if it was Jordan's mother who got her the phone, and was responsible for paying her phone bills, then she should have noticed the excessive data usage if truly there were thousands of text messages as she wants the police to believe. What action did she take with regard to all those text messages and phone records involving Jordan and Mr Hooker while her daughter was still a minor?
If Tammie Powers didn’t report Mr. Hooker’s inappropriate relationship with her daughter when Jordan was under 18; if she didn't consider the teacher-student odd relationship something worth probing back then, why is she so angry now? Her seeming desperation suggests that she’s only trying to avoid any condemnation the public may have against her daughter. Unless Tammie Powers could prove that she never knew about those text messages and phone records until now, her outrage over the affair at this time clearly suggests she’s only trying to save her own image as well.
In view of the fact that her daughter is defending the controversial relationship, my only advice to Tammie is that she should pray over it. Time will tell if her daughter's love for such an unscrupulous married man is one that is destined to last. Let's hope it's not one of those love madness that typically fizzles out into nothingness once all the steam and passion lose their initial strength. For now, Jordan's mother should just stay mute.
In any case this love story is a California story. Who knows? It could probably be the forerunner to a Hollywood romance movie that’s already scripted and waiting for the selection of actors. Again, time will tell.