Some Catholics, among them the prickly head of the Catholic League, Bill Donohue, are hoping that a decision made by those who control the iconic Empire State Building is not written in proverbial stone.
A rally, Donohue reports in his widely read newsletter Catalyst, is in process. On day 29 of the protest campaign in behalf of Mother Teresa, Donohue dashed off a letter to every Latino lay Catholic group in the New York Tri-State area.
“Today I am writing to every Latino lay Catholic group in the New York Tri-State area informing them of our protest demonstration on August 26 outside the Empire State Building on 34th Street and 5th Avenue.
“The rally is being held to protest the decision by Anthony Malkin, the owner of the storied building, to deny a tribute to Mother Teresa: our request to have the towers shine blue and white, the colors of her congregation, on August 26th, the 100th anniversary of her birthday, was originally denied without explanation, and was later denied on appeal by invoking a "policy" that prohibits honoring religious individuals or institutions. If this were in fact true, then (a) they would have said so from the beginning (instead they told me the application looked fine), and (b) they would not have honored Cardinal O'Connor when he died; Pope John Paul II when he died; the Salvation Army; and Rev. Martin Luther King.
“Yet the same persons who chose to stiff Mother Teresa decided to honor the Chinese Communist revolution last year, even though 77 million innocent men, women and children were murdered under Mao Zedong. By contrast, the U.S. Postal Service is honoring Mother Teresa with a commemorative stamp.
“Everyone is being asked to pass the word about our demonstration and to join us on August 26. They are also being asked to write to Anthony Malkin. His address is Malkin Properties, One Grand Central Place 60, E. 42nd St., NY, NY 10165”
Donohue has already sent a similar mailing to German Catholics in the Tri-town area. That area presumably includes lower Connecticut, which long ago suceeded, politically and culturally, from the rest of the state. The people in the Gold Coast, save for Blumenthal and other interested politicos, spend much of their time in a sort of cultural-political bubble that serves as a prophylactic, preventing them from fully participating in the political life of our pleasant though bankrupted state.
A news report in the indispensable CTMirror advises that much of Blumenthal’s vast wealth – more abundant than Peter Schiff’s but considerably less than Linda McMahon’s – derives from “Cynthia Blumenthal's holdings; the assets held by him individually or jointly with his wife totaled less than $2 million. The daughter of Peter Malkin, a New York real estate magnate who heads an investment group that owns the Empire State Building and other properties, Cynthia Blumenthal's personal assets were worth at least $55 million and as much as $107 million in 2009.”
Money talks, and surely Anthony and Cynthia are on speaking terms.
After midnight, a bedroom in Greenwich at the beginning of a long, hot summer
Attorney General And Prospective U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (AGAPUSSRB): Cynthia, I can’t sleep.
Cynthia: What now?
AGAPUSSRB: Maybe you can have a word with him.
Cynthia: We’ve been through this.
AGAPUSSRB: But I can’t sleep. It would take no more than a whisper in his ear. Really, to deny a prospective saint an honor that has been conferred upon a communist mass murderer – listen to this: “Yet the same persons who chose to stiff Mother Teresa decided to honor the Chinese Communist revolution last year, even though 77 million innocent men, women and children were murdered under Mao Zedong. By contrast, the U.S. Postal Service is honoring Mother Teresa with a commemorative stamp” – it’s not politically useful.
Cynthia: The family doesn't follow politics, Dick.
AGAPUSSRB: But Cynthia, it’s right there (points to a spot just before him) I have it nearly in my grasp, and really, Cynthia, REALLY, I can taste the sweet air of congress on my tongue, and REALLY – this is not helpful. She’s almost a saint! And REALLY, it’s just a bunch of lights! What about that mediator who settled the tousle between your dad and Queen of Mean Leona Helmsley over ownership of the building? What’s his phone number? Surely, negotiation with Donohue is possible.
Some sweet pillow talk like this might do much to defang Catalyst, not to speak of the Germans, the Latinos and other catholic-Catholics in Connecticut pondering whether to vote for Blumenthal.
According to a recent story in the Greenwich Times: “Democratic Senate candidate Richard Blumenthal is siding with thousands of Catholics protesting the apparent snub of Mother Teresa by the Empire State Building, which is owned by his father-in-law, Peter Malkin.”