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Ashcroft Gone, Justice Statues Disrobe
AP ^ | 6/24/05 | Mark Sherman

Posted on 06/24/2005 4:00:24 PM PDT by Crackingham

With barely a word about it, workers at the Justice Department Friday removed the blue drapes that have famously covered two scantily clad statues for the past 3 1/2 years. Spirit of Justice, with her one breast exposed and her arms raised, and the bare-chested male Majesty of Law basked in the late afternoon light of Justice's ceremonial Great Hall.

The drapes, installed in 2002 at a cost of $8,000, allowed then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to speak in the Great Hall without fear of a breast showing up behind him in television or newspaper pictures. They also provoked jokes about and criticism of the deeply religious Ashcroft. The 12-foot, 6-inch aluminum statues were installed shortly after the building opened in the 1930s.

With a change in leadership at Justice, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales faced the question: Would they stay or would they go? He regularly deflected the question, saying he had weightier issues before him.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Extended News; Government; News/Current Events; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: ashcroft; doj; gonzales; govwatch; libertarians; sexuallyrepressed; snopes; statue; urbanlegend; wasteofmoney
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1 posted on 06/24/2005 4:00:24 PM PDT by Crackingham
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To: Crackingham

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

2 posted on 06/24/2005 4:05:33 PM PDT by AdamSelene235 (Truth has become so rare and precious she is always attended to by a bodyguard of lies.)
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To: Crackingham

I have heard about the covering of the statues before but wasn't sure if it was just folklore - apparently it was't. I have to admit that covering the statues is a just bit over the top.


3 posted on 06/24/2005 4:06:14 PM PDT by Avenger
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Comment #4 Removed by Moderator

To: Avenger
What did Ashcroft have against breasts anyway? Personally I like breasts.
5 posted on 06/24/2005 4:09:33 PM PDT by Moral Hazard (According to the Catholic church the Capybara is a fish.)
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To: Crackingham

Pfff, those look fake.


6 posted on 06/24/2005 4:11:28 PM PDT by wingnutx (Seabees Can Do!)
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To: AdamSelene235

Ashcroft probably noticed that all the Legacy-Media photographers were crowding one area, just so they could get "that" shot.


7 posted on 06/24/2005 4:11:43 PM PDT by SmithL (There are a lot of people that hate Bush more than they hate terrorists)
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To: Moral Hazard

If we're not careful, the next AG may end up putting
them in chadors. . .


8 posted on 06/24/2005 4:11:52 PM PDT by CondorFlight
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To: AdamSelene235

Heartily agree.

And when is he going to pick up his drapes and cut a check to the treasury


9 posted on 06/24/2005 4:11:52 PM PDT by Natchez Hawk (Clarence Thomas if Rehnquist must be replaced--NOT Scalia)
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To: Crackingham
The drapes, installed in 2002 at a cost of $8,000, allowed then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to speak in the Great Hall without fear of a breast showing up behind him in television or newspaper pictures.

This had to be one of the most stoopid, ridiculous wastes of tax-payer money we've come across. What, Ashcroft couldn't speak in the Great Hall in such a way that the *breast* wouldn't be in the shot? The mics aren't mobile, the cameras are stationary??

10 posted on 06/24/2005 4:12:35 PM PDT by MozarkDawg
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To: Moral Hazard

He had a problem with them because they made him think about Huge Marble Breasts, and he was disturbed by the strange tightening of his pants when he approached them...


11 posted on 06/24/2005 4:13:01 PM PDT by Lord_Baltar
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To: Crackingham

They should blindfold the statue, too. Might as well, symoblism is everything.


12 posted on 06/24/2005 4:14:19 PM PDT by madison10
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To: Moral Hazard
What did Ashcroft have against breasts anyway? Personally I like breasts.

Some are better than others

13 posted on 06/24/2005 4:14:21 PM PDT by woofie ("Plunk your magic twanger, Froggy!!")
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To: Crackingham

Why is this considered newsworthy? Ashcroft has been out of office for some time now.


14 posted on 06/24/2005 4:14:30 PM PDT by Figment
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To: MississippiDeltaDawg
This had to be one of the most stoopid, ridiculous wastes of tax-payer money we've come across

Let me think on this a few minutes. The government has really had some mindless moments. Not saying this is not one of them.

15 posted on 06/24/2005 4:15:12 PM PDT by Chuck54 (Hey Ted, 3 strikes and you may be out, but not if President Bush is calling the strikes!)
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To: Figment

Yeah, but the statues were uncovered today, not some time ago.


16 posted on 06/24/2005 4:16:11 PM PDT by AntiGuv ()
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To: wingnutx

They're spectacular - and they're real!


17 posted on 06/24/2005 4:16:17 PM PDT by Republicus2001
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To: Crackingham

From what I recall, the statues were covered because they were becoming a distraction as juuvenile press photographers were going out of their way to include the naked statues in pictures of Ashcroft as an attempt to mock his religious beliefs. They could only get away with somethhing like that because they were mocking Christians.


18 posted on 06/24/2005 4:16:46 PM PDT by Eagles6 (Dig deeper, more ammo.)
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To: Figment

Because the MSM never misses a chance to ridicule people of faith. Mr Ashcroft is a great American.


19 posted on 06/24/2005 4:18:13 PM PDT by balch3
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To: Crackingham

He thought it was just a couple of pinatas.


20 posted on 06/24/2005 4:18:56 PM PDT by muawiyah (q)
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To: balch3
Yes and let's remind people of the facts here:

It was Clinton A.G. Janet Reno who covered the statue with a drape. When Ashcroft came in he inquired about it & decided not to buck the establishment (lest the libs criticize him for being a hypocrite Christian or what not) but he couldn't see LEASING / RENTING the cloth that was used to cover the statue so he purchased it for pennies on the $ and the msm made hay of it.

21 posted on 06/24/2005 4:20:12 PM PDT by Steven W.
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To: Eagles6

the statue was already covered by Janet Reno before he arrived.


22 posted on 06/24/2005 4:20:41 PM PDT by Steven W.
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To: Eagles6
Interesting point ~ I gather the same could apply to the other posters here who are using the occasion to mock Ashcroft.

It wasn't a case of juvenile behavior, though. These guys want to kill your babies, take away your cigarettes, and now steal your home and toss you in the street.

First the breasts, and now the world.

23 posted on 06/24/2005 4:21:11 PM PDT by muawiyah (q)
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To: Moral Hazard

I couldn't agree more.


24 posted on 06/24/2005 4:21:28 PM PDT by SoDak (where the heck am I? Anyone?)
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To: balch3
Because the MSM never misses a chance to ridicule people of faith
We have a winner! balch3 has observed and spoken correctly.
25 posted on 06/24/2005 4:24:44 PM PDT by labette (If only common sense would be more common..)
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To: Crackingham
"When former Attorney General Edwin Meese released a report on pornography in the 1980s, photographers dived to the floor to capture the image of him raising the report in the air, with the partially nude female statue behind him."

He got to do a report on pornography? Lucky bastard!
26 posted on 06/24/2005 4:26:20 PM PDT by Moral Hazard (...but when push comes to shove, you've got to do what you love, even if it's not a good idea.)
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To: Crackingham

whats so hard about moving the podium? do that instead of robing


27 posted on 06/24/2005 4:26:36 PM PDT by wallcrawlr ( Moderates = You're the wise middle. Like a spare tire around the fat waist of society.)
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To: Crackingham

Hmm, looks like an implant to me. Never did like those fake ones.


28 posted on 06/24/2005 4:28:40 PM PDT by mcg1969
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To: Crackingham
The Ashcroft statue bit is a well disputed Urban legend...so who do you want to believe ... the MSM or Ashcroft
http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/ashcroft.asp

The issue at the heart of this piece is two works of art created for the newly-constructed Great Hall of the Department of Justice in the 1930s by German sculptor Carl Paul Jennewein: a pair of 12-1/2 foot statues representing the Spirit of Justice and the Majesty of the Law. The former is a female figure draped in a toga, with raised arms and one exposed breast; the latter is a male figure with a draped cloth covering his midsection. Press photographers over the years had sometimes taken advantage of the positioning of the statues to snap "boob in front of the boob" shots (such as a photo of Edwin Meese, Attorney General during President Reagan's second term, holding a report on pornography aloft with the partially nude female statue visible behind him). After current Attorney General John Ashcroft was captured by press cameramen in similar shots, the media reported in January 2002 that Ashcroft had ordered (or approved) the Department of Justice's spending of $8,650 for drapes to hide the two statues because he didn't like being photographed in front of them (or, worse, that Ashcroft was a embarrassingly prudish Philistine who was offended by any representation of nudity). The Department of Justice spokespeople maintained that the drapes were used not to hide the statues but to "provide a nice background for television cameras" during formal events; that the purchase had been made by a DoJ staffer on her own initiative to save the $2,000 per event cost of renting them; and that "the attorney general was not even aware of the situation." Critics held that the DoJ's disputing the issue of who actually authorized the purchase of the drapes was a smoke screen (since rental drapes were already being used to cover the statues); that the drapes have been left hanging all the time and are not put in place only when televised events are being held in the Great Hall; and that even if Attorney General Ashcroft didn't know about or authorize the purchase, he certainly didn't order the drapes removed, either.

29 posted on 06/24/2005 4:30:07 PM PDT by tophat9000 (When the State ASSUMES death...It makes an ASH out of you and me..)
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To: TheBigB

Worthy of an RPR ping?


30 posted on 06/24/2005 4:36:03 PM PDT by DTogo (U.S. out of the U.N. & U.N out of the U.S.)
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To: tophat9000
who do you want to believe ... the MSM or Ashcroft?

Hmm.. Is that a trick question?

31 posted on 06/24/2005 4:37:16 PM PDT by AntiGuv ()
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To: Eagles6
They could only get away with somethhing like that because they were mocking Christians.

They weren't "mocking Christians", they might have been mocking Ashcroft, who came across as somewhat straitlaced, or at least they were trying to create an ironic image.

The reporters weren't the only ones who gave Ashcroft a hard time. I recently read the following story: When Ashcroft first started working in the justice department, long before he became attorney general, he had a boss who relentlessly ridiculed his uptight attitude. The boss was Clarence Thomas.

32 posted on 06/24/2005 4:49:15 PM PDT by wideminded
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To: AdamSelene235

Caption: "A Tale of Two Boobs"


33 posted on 06/24/2005 4:58:34 PM PDT by to_zion
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To: AdamSelene235

What a boob!

34 posted on 06/24/2005 4:58:50 PM PDT by Responsibility1st
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To: tophat9000

Snopes is well known to be biased against conservatives. Just ask around.


35 posted on 06/24/2005 5:00:36 PM PDT by balch3
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To: Responsibility1st

"Yeah, man... it was THIS BIG!!!! (whooo)"

36 posted on 06/24/2005 5:02:29 PM PDT by Responsibility1st
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To: tophat9000
Carl Paul Jennewein is actually an American sculpture who had the unfortunate circumstance of having been born in Deutschland. The second he got his permanent residency papers here he joined the military to fight in WWI.

Personally, I think he made a mistake since we were entering the war on the wrong side (WWI, not WWII, any Freepers out there who forgot to read).

In any case, he received an award to study in Rome that allowed him to bow out of his remaining military service.

This guy did a lot of major stuff ~ architectural works in fact.

37 posted on 06/24/2005 5:05:25 PM PDT by muawiyah (q)
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To: AntiGuv

"who do you want to believe ... the MSM or Ashcroft?

Hmm.. Is that a trick question?"

Ashcroft: Who are you gonna believe - me or the lyin' MSM?


38 posted on 06/24/2005 5:13:30 PM PDT by GladesGuru ("In a society predicated upon liberty, it is essential to examine principles)
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To: Figment
Why is this considered newsworthy? Ashcroft has been out of office for some time now.

Ashcroft embarrassed you, too?

39 posted on 06/24/2005 5:23:56 PM PDT by iconoclast
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To: Crackingham


Why are the statues disrobed in the first place?
The deep symbolism of a bare nipple escapes me right now.


40 posted on 06/24/2005 5:34:54 PM PDT by james500
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To: Crackingham
The drapes, installed in 2002 at a cost of $8,000, allowed then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to speak in the Great Hall without fear of a breast showing up behind him in television or newspaper pictures.

Only one boob allowed on the screen at a time I guess.

41 posted on 06/24/2005 5:36:37 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: iconoclast

" Ashcroft embarrassed you, too"


Not at all. If he didn't like the pics that were being published, he had every right in the world to change the background. It is rather childish for you libs to judge Ashcrofts stint as head of the Justice Department on this bullshit and rehash it at this late date.


42 posted on 06/24/2005 5:52:52 PM PDT by Figment
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To: AntiGuv

"Yeah, but the statues were uncovered today, not some time ago"


Why are the statues even there? Sell the damned things. They serve no purpose whatsoever. Ashcroft considered them offensive for whatever reason and it had nothing to do with the mans' job performance


43 posted on 06/24/2005 5:59:16 PM PDT by Figment
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To: balch3

"Because the MSM never misses a chance to ridicule people of faith. Mr Ashcroft is a great American"

Exactly. I've yet to hear anyone challenge the man on the substance of his term over the judial branch. No one with any credibility that is


44 posted on 06/24/2005 6:04:43 PM PDT by Figment
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To: wideminded
The reporters weren't the only ones who gave Ashcroft a hard time. I recently read the following story: When Ashcroft first started working in the justice department, long before he became attorney general, he had a boss who relentlessly ridiculed his uptight attitude. The boss was Clarence Thomas.

That post is so stupid as to defy belief. Don't you do even the slightest investigation before you make potentially embarrassing comments? Ashcroft was Missouri AG, Governor, and Senator before becoming AG in 2001, after he lost a controversial election to "Dead Man" Carnahan. Clarence Thomas was confirmed to the SCOTUS back in the first Bush administration (1989-1992). Dumb, dumb, dumb.

45 posted on 06/24/2005 6:07:37 PM PDT by Timmy
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To: Crackingham
The drapes, installed in 2002 at a cost of $8,000, allowed then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to speak in the Great Hall without fear of a breast showing up behind him in television or newspaper pictures.

Send the bill to that Ashcroft idiot.

46 posted on 06/24/2005 6:07:39 PM PDT by Hank Rearden (Never allow anyone who could only get a government job attempt to tell you how to run your life.)
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To: Crackingham

ALUMINUM statues? How cheesy! Sell them at a garage sale. They certainly lend no value to a government office.


47 posted on 06/24/2005 6:07:59 PM PDT by kittymyrib
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To: TexasConservative46
You're not talking about Ashcroft are you?

If he wasn't, I am. Thank God that parasitic doofus is gone; now he needs to cough up the 8 grand.

48 posted on 06/24/2005 6:09:09 PM PDT by Hank Rearden (Never allow anyone who could only get a government job attempt to tell you how to run your life.)
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To: Crackingham

Ashcroft was, and remains, a "Moron First Class." Without a doubt the absolute worst Atty. Gen. since the Nixon Saturday Night Massacre.


49 posted on 06/24/2005 6:38:34 PM PDT by middie
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To: kittymyrib
ALUMINUM statues? How cheesy!

Aluminum used to be quite the high-tech marvel. Kind of like titanium used to be before it was no longer a Cold War "strategic material."

50 posted on 06/24/2005 6:39:42 PM PDT by Haru Hara Haruko
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