Ever hear of the "alienation from affection" law? Nope, me either. At least, until I read this article, which I found absolutely compelling.
A North Carolina woman decided to up and sue the mistress of her husband under this law and won -- a cool, 9 million dollar amount.
Cynthia Shackelford appeared on Good Morning America today and conveyed her intended message rather well:
“My main message is to all those women out there who might have their eyes on some guy that is married to not come between anybody. It’s not good to go in there. It hurts the children. My children are devastated. I’m devastated. Allan [Shackelford's husband] and I joked about sitting in rocking chairs and having a glass of wine or whatever and talking about what our children did when they were little. That’s never going to happen now.”
And why won’t that happen? It’s simple: the sixty year-old woman’s husband was caught having an affair with
some cheap floozy another woman by the name of Anne Lundquist and claimed that the woman broke up the pair’s thirty-plus year union. On a side note, the other woman is not just a nameless, faceless woman in society: she’s the Dean of Students at Wells College in New York.
Lundquist’s camp thought it to be inappropriate at this time to comment on the lawsuit and subsequent interview with GMA and at this point, they’re keeping their traps snapped shut firmly although they have maintained the position that they’ll be appealing the case.
However, one person that is speaking out in response to the woman’s monetary award is Shackelford’s estranged husband, Allan. Allan, whether in a fit of rage or in a public display of devotion to his mistress, states that not only was this affair not the first, but it was one in a series of many, dating back to the couple’s first few years of marriage.
Some might find this lawsuit to be completely absurd, but be assured that I am not one of them. I feel that if you’re willing to enter into the sanctity of marriage — and I’m not even throwing religion into this discussion, because marriage is defined by a bond of sanctity even without the relativity of religion — then you should be prepared to own up to whatever transgressions that may befall your character. I consider marriage to be one of the highest commitments and as far as I’m concerned, divorce is always an option … and due to that fact, there’s no excuse for infidelity or a breach of “contract”, if you will.
I’m also not a twenty-first century sue-crazy “victim”, but I believe that this woman deserves every penny she’s received and the notoriety of not allowing a man — or anyone else — to trample her underfoot.