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Law or Truth?

May 22, 2008

I haven’t really weighed in on this subject in awhile, but I got an interesting comment yesterday on my previous post about the Kentucky Supreme Court’s decision, entitled Sad. While I’m all about differing opinions, and iron sharpening iron, sometimes I just wonder whether others actually think before they speak (or type).

The gist of the comment from the mysterious “MrW” was that James participated in “evil adulterous behavior” and that he doesn’t deserve the right to have his day in court because MrW thinks he’s “abusive per se”. He also mentions again that James is an “interloper” and that poor Mr. Ricketts should not have to suffer from “James’ on-going and obnoxious interference.”

There were a couple of other comments left by regular commenters on my blog, with which I agree. -d did a separate post on the topic today and I agree with her sentiments regarding the Supreme Court’s decision, if not with her statements about James’ website.  I think if I were in the same situation, I would take similar action. I’m not sure how you could combat this whole mess without publicizing everything and refuting the lies both Julia and Jon Ricketts have told. I don’t really see hate there, rather the pleading, begging, desperate frustration of a man cut out of his son’s life. In fact, I’ve received multiple e-mails from James asking for prayer for Julia because he’s aware of the pain she’s feeling.

That said, I do find that the logic of the entire situation gets lost on MrW (and folks like him), who seems to be overcome by emotion and therefore unable to face the facts.

The facts of Julia and James’ relationship are these:

  • Julia Ricketts was a willing participant in the affair with James Rhoades
  • Julia Ricketts participated 100%… for a year and a half
  • Julia Ricketts was the ONLY party in the affair that took marriage vows and then defiled them
  • Julia and James created a child together
  • Julia included James in her pregnancy, giving him regular updates and telling him that she wanted him to be a part of the child’s life
  • Julia continued to include James, calling him the father of the child, speaking with the grandparents, sending pictures, and e-mail updates for the first three months of the child’s life
  • Julia continued to involve James only until she let Mr. Ricketts know that the child was not biologically his
  • Julia then decided that it was too inconvenient for her to continue trying to involve James and cut him off entirely from any contact with the child

It was not like this was a fling, or a one-night stand, or some momentary lapse in judgment. It lasted a year and a HALF. Julia knew the ramifications of her actions when she chose to participate in it.

It’s also NOT like she found out she was pregnant, broke things off with James without telling him about it, went back to her husband, and then James came after them, wielding a sword or whatever. She told James. She included James. She set up the entire “let’s play house” business, for three months, until it became too difficult for her to maintain her double life. She invited James in, gave him the opportunity to meet, hold, and become attached to his son, and then slammed the door in his face.

And the facts that matter? They are these:

  • The child belongs, biologically, to Julia and James – not to Julia and Jon Ricketts
  • James, and the rest of the biological fathers out there deserve to know their children unless they are proven unfit
  • The child will not benefit from an entire life based on lies
  • The child deserves the opportunity to know his biological father

I go back to the questions I had the first time around on this whole thing. If this situation were reversed, and a woman had given birth to a child fathered by a married man, would everyone be so up in arms about her actions? Would everyone agree that the child should be taken from her and placed with the father and his wife, just because the father was married when the child was conceived?  I hardly think so.

I also fail to see how excluding James from his child’s life, but keeping him on the line for child support sometime in the future should Julia and Jon’s marriage fall apart (quite likely, given the circumstances) is in any way fair to any of the parties involved. The only person this ruling serves is Julia herself–the woman who participated in this affair, the woman who broke her marriage vows, the woman who conceived a child by someone other than her husband, and now wants to use the law to shield herself from the natural consequences of her actions, from her own “evil and adulterous behavior.”

But truly, at the end of the day, this is NOT about Julia. This is NOT about James. And this is, most assuredly, not about Jon Ricketts. This is about a child that is caught in the midst of a tug-of-war because the Kentucky Supreme Court and the Ricketts family would rather hide their heads in the sand than do what is best. This child, who will grow up tangled in the web of lies and deceit his mother and stepfather have created, will know the truth eventually.

  • He will know that Jon Ricketts is not his father
  • He will know that his mother kept him from knowing his biological father
  • He will know that his biological father wanted to be a part of his life
  • He will know that he missed out on that relationship for years
  • His life will never be the same… even if his childhood is spent in happy oblivion
  • He will be scarred

And the people who will bear the burden of inflicting those scars are the very people who claim to be trying to “protect” him now – Julia and Jon Ricketts.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. May 22, 2008 12:48 pm

    AMEN, sister!

    I couldn’t have said it better myself.

  2. May 22, 2008 1:14 pm

    You just said exactly what I’ve been thinking for months!!

    I completely agree with you.

  3. Christi Lee permalink
    May 22, 2008 1:59 pm

    I completely agree. Women like this give us a bad name.

    Oh, and you also failed to mention the child is going to know his mom was a cheater. Kids these days use the internet by age 9 (at least!) The kid will find out just by the media attention. He is going to be pretty upset. I know I would be.

  4. May 22, 2008 3:49 pm

    I agree there is no hate there and I changed that wording. Emotionally charged, bitter at the injustice, any of those would have been a much better way to say it.

    Either way, the web page aside, what is happening to Mr. Rhoades is insane. I don’t understand the state allowing it to continue to happen. It is an complete injustice to this child.

    -d

  5. May 23, 2008 4:21 am

    I agree. Well written as usual.

  6. Tulip Girl permalink
    May 23, 2008 8:31 am

    See, this is why we all read your blog…you tell it like it is!

  7. May 23, 2008 8:53 am

    The reality is that, overwhelmingly, the courts operate under the thinly veiled guise that women have all the rights and have none of the responsibilities for their actions.

    As always = “it’s the man’s fault.”

    The adulteress has:

    – The right to the child. (Father loses.)
    – The right to keep or abandon her marriage. (Father and/or Husband loses.)
    – The right to the men’s future earnings. (Father and/or Husband loses.)

    The reality is – in today’s family court environment – the only person who has the majority of rights and almost none of the responsibilities = the women.

    No, this is not a blanket condemnation of women. It is a blanket condemnation of the horrifying system in which families have to operate when things go bad. It’s an unconstitutional, deep intrusion into the private lives of people by the government.

    It seems as though nothing will stop “Big Brother” and the financial windfall generated for Federal and State goverments on the destruction of families in this country and abroad.

    Jim, regardless of which side of the equation one falls – is the one being saddled with the “blame and associated stigma” – while the adulteress gets off fairly unscathed.

    It wouldn’t surprise me at all if she decides to scuttle the marriage and somehow manages to collect “child” support money from both of them.

  8. May 23, 2008 11:18 am

    Stephanie,
    The one thing not noted in this saga is that the Ricketts are tied to the legal system in Kentucky.
    In this part of the country, it is not what you know, but who you know. Unfortunately for James, the legal bias was against him from day one and it would be for anyone who is not of the area and who is not tied to the legal community, therefore an Interloper.

    This is hard to fight unless you get the case out of Kentucky. That is James’ only hope, as I see it…

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