Wife of journalist speaks out before his sentencing

Jamie Vaduva and the girls on the way to watch Virgil's trial.

Jamie Vaduva and the girls on the way to watch Virgil’s trial.

Xenia, Ohio (TFC) – After the prosecution expanded the definition of “panhandling” during court to include donations to charitable organizations, it was able to successfully prosecute journalist Virgil Vaduva, who has been highly critical of the government in the past.

The effect of the impromptu ordinance expansion, which will affect the ability of charities to collect money within the small town, has created a backlash against the town. Vaduva will be sentenced next week and is facing 30 days in jail for collecting about $40 for a local nonprofit while on public property.

The journalist’s wife, Jamie Vaduva, has apparently been asked by friends why her husband behaves the way he does. For the unaware, Virgil can be a bit abrasive when dealing with authorities. One of the first times I met him, we were both sneaking around the backside of a police station to get photos of the Beavercreek police readying to arrest those protesting the killing of John Crawford. Later that day, we trolled a plainclothes cop together. For those that aren’t constantly in the fight, it might seem odd to risk jail to prove a point or to get a photo. For the spouses of those involved it can be more than an annoyance at times, but Jamie penned a statement on Facebook that attempted to explain the motivations of her husband:

“Why does your husband do what he does?
I’ve been asked this a few times. I’ve always wished there was a way to really communicate the answers to this question to those asking it and thinking it. I’m not a blogger or a journalist or even a good writer. (Although I did win a writing contest in the third grade. But come on, I can’t use that to claim any good writing now, at age 40, can I?)I’m not witty or clever like many writers and not many people would care to read anything I write, unless they are a close friend and they do it because, well, that’s what friends do!

But I wanted to sit down and write down some of my thoughts to actually share an entirely different perspective on all of this.If you don’t know, my husband is what is considered an activist. An activist for the ideas of liberty. I guess you could say our entire family is an activist family. The very fact that we homeschool….we are actively doing something against the grain that we believe in. That’s just one example. I’m more of a behind the scenes, quiet activist. Supporting my husband and our friends who are less timid about being open about it. I hopefully lead somewhat by example in my actions, demeanor and my personal approach to the way I do things. My way is not the only way and I have to respect those who are different from me. My husband. He is not like me in many ways. And I’ve learned to appreciate our differences and respect them. And we also have rubbed off on each other. Me becoming less timid, him, maybe being more sensitive to the perspectives I share.

So getting back to my original question. ‘Why does your husband do what he does?’ Well, let’s go back to Romania, to the 1980’s and 90’s (and it goes even further back).

There was a young boy , two years older than myself, unknown to me, living across the ocean, a very very different life than I was living here in the USA. Some things that may seem trivial but that Americans would go crazy over…they had one tv station. The communist tv station that chose what you were to watch. Full of Communist propaganda.

No hot water after a certain time each evening. Standing in line for hours to get meat or bread. Parents often leaving for work while children, as young as 5 or 6 years old, my husband included, had to stand in line for their family’s food, while fighting off aggressive adults who would take advantage of the young ones. It’s every man for himself when it comes to not starving. Not that these people were ruthless or stingy, but starvation and poverty make you a survivor and you have to do what you have to do to feed your family. Schools forcing children to pick cotton for the government. Did the kids get paid? No. Forget having Bibles and being free and open about your faith. It was the communists way or no way.

Of course there were no guns allowed. The government would protect you. But the government was who everyone feared. They were very used to the idea that their government was always listening to their phone calls. Better not say anything against the Communists. Or they would make sure you would not do it again.

My husband had a little ‘rebel’ in his blood. When I first introduced him to my friends and acquaintances, most of them said “Right on! He’s a hero! He stood up against that tyrannical government who tread on their freedom! We need people like him here!” But when he does the same things here, in action, now, many of those same people say “Oh you can’t do that here.”

Don’t ever mistake our family for disliking this country. We love it. We care about it. I’m proud to be married to a man who is not afraid or ashamed to call attention to some things in some unpopular ways.

Challenge yourself to be fully awake and realize how each day we are a little less free than we were the day before. My husband does what he does because he loves his family, our children and their future.”