A calendar now on sale across East Texas has some people very angry. A board member of Tyler's Meals on Wheels even resigned over its contents.
Prominent East Texans, city leaders, and businessmen stripped down to pose for a calendar to raise money for the SPCA of East Texas. No nudity is actually shown - items are placed in front of any private areas - but some found it offensive despite the good cause.
"If what little we can do to sit in a bathing suit and take a photograph, I was proud to do that," Sheriff JB Smith, Mr. February, said.
For Aubrey Sharpe, the president of Meals on Wheels, it was his involvement that spawned harsh words and the resignation of one of his female board members.
In a letter sent to the Meals on Wheels board, the board member wrote, "for the record, my resignation was prompted by the decision of our board president to pose in the nude for the fundraising calendar that was recently published."
"She's a wonderful person," Sharpe said, "smart, a great board member, we hate to lose her. There's just a difference of opinion."
His fellow models agreed.
"There's been nothing negative about it. It's a good cause. The SPCA is doing a great job, I don't know how anybody could argue against it," Dr. Rick Coker, Mr. March, said.
The board member's letter goes on to say, "I believe the publication of a calendar with a nude photograph of the Meals on Wheels board president presents a defining moment for the Meals on Wheels board and a golden opportunity to take a stand against such irresponsible behavior."
"Well, I didn't pose nude," Sharpe explained, "I was wearing short britches!"
Laughter seemed to be a common response to the calendar.
"People laugh, either want to buy a calendar, joke about it, because it's a fun thing for a sad issue," Sharpe said.
We reached out to Meals on Wheels and they had no comment. We also contacted that board member, but haven't heard back. The men say they don't care what they think because the goal of this calendar is being met.
"We're going to save animals and that's the bottom line," Sheriff Smith said.
All proceeds after manufacturing costs are going to the SPCA.
"If we can save some animals, if we can help the SPCA, I don't know why we wouldn't do it," Dr. Coker said.
They say in their positions they're used to differing opinions and taking risks.
"And we risk it for the right thing and this was the right thing to risk it for," Sharpe said.
The SPCA said the calendar has been a success and it's all in the name of charity.
"I'm sorry that she was offended," Deborah Dobbs, with the SPCA, said, "no one was ever meant to offend anyone, and if they are offended, we're terribly sorry, but it's a sad problem, and if it gets people talking we've accomplished our goal."
The SPCA said they have sold more than a thousand copies of that calendar raising nearly $20,000.