PUBLIC OPINION > The Teacher Who Left His Wife for a Student Made a Big Mistake
News 2012/03/06 23:09:23
Every once in a while, "Don't Stand So Close to Me" by The Police hits a little close to home. In the case of James Hooker (41) and Jordan Powers (18), it's just like the song. The girl is less than half his age, and they both seem to be into it. A therapist has gone on record to compare Hooker to a sex offender, calling him "pathologically immature," but similar accusations were made about Doug Hutchison (51) and Courtney Stodden (16) and many observers defended him. Good Morning America took a public poll on this new story. Let's see how people voted.
This one was a little obvious, but the main reason we decided to recap it was to take a look at the demographic breakdowns. But before we get to that, we thought it'd be interesting to dig into the comments attached to "Okay" votes. Most people who let the affair slide were simply unwilling to get involved in the couple's business. Regardless of what may have happened before, she's 18 now and capable of making her own decisions. For his part, quite a few wrote it off as a "mid-life crisis" and predicted a swift end to the relationship, once the reality of the situation sets in. Yes, there were a handful of what you might call "supporters," but they were few and far between. Now, on to the demos...
Men Are More Willing to Consent
As you may have suspected, the male voters were less disturbed by the story. They were more than twice as likely to vote "Okay," with exactly a third of them throwing in for Mr. Hooker. Judging by the comments, female voters were not only more likely to say it's a mistake, but more adamant about it, as well.
More Support From His Age Group
We singled out Powers' and Hooker's age groups specifically to find out what their peers might think, and believe it or not, teens and young adults are more likely to criticize the relationship than people closer to the man's age. Strong words in the staff room, perhaps, but not as strong as the words in the classroom.
Complication Like Company
There wasn't much sympathy in any of the relationship demographics -- certainly not from married voters -- but respondents who listed their relationship as "complicated" did show some. Presumably, it's easier to relate to a complicated emotional attachment when you're involved in one yourself.
If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit Good Morning America's poll about James Hooker and Jordin Powers. We'd love to hear from you!
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