Magazine article Church & State

Naked Statue of Greek God Horrifies Calif. Home Schoolers

Magazine article Church & State

Naked Statue of Greek God Horrifies Calif. Home Schoolers

Article excerpt

Attendees of a home schooling convention in Sacramento were so offended by a seven-foot tall, naked bronze statue of the Greek god Poseidon that they dressed him in an entire outfit, including a necktie.

Parents attending the Advanced Training Institute International's home schooling convention at the Sacramento Convention Center in early July had received permission from city officials to clothe the statue during the three-day event. On day one they dressed him in a toga, on day two in a golf shirt and khaki trousers and on day three in slacks, a dress shirt and a tie.

"In a store, when you have pornography on a shelf, a decent store owner would cover it up," Richard Barb, a conference organizer, told The Sacramento Bee. "Here, we actually set it in place and ask people to stare at it."

Jim Voeller, director of the Advanced Training Institute, added, "A lot of the parents would object to the display of public nudity. We didn't deface the statue, and we got permission to cover it for the conference."

The Poseidon statue, which is displayed in a public park between the convention center and a community theater, was a gift to the city from the government of Greece in 1972. It is a replica of a famous statue that appears in the National Archeological Museum in Athens.

Not all Sacramento residents were happy to see Poseidon in britches, and during the conference, the statue was repeatedly undressed. One downtown office worker, Eric Ford, was caught removing Poseidon's pants by a conference official. Ford later told the Bee, "That statue is for the whole city, not for them. …

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