Roughly one year after the Empire State Building received a heap of bad publicity for ignoring pleas to light the building in remembrance and awareness for victims of pediatric cancer, images of Cecil the Lion projected along the side of the building graced the city skyline.
There are still currently no plans for the building to ‘Go Gold’ for pediatric cancer awareness next month. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month, with gold being it’s associated color.
Cecil the Lion was among a group of endangered species honored on a canvas 1,250 feet tall on the Empire State Building.
The Empire State Building’s famous light displays were used to draw attention endangered wildlife. Along with Cecil, whose death has sparked international outrage, a snow leopard, tigers, lemurs, and various snakes, birds and sea creatures were projected onto the building.
The Washington Times reports that the display cost upwards of $1 million and was designed to promote an extinction documentary by the Oceanic Preservation Society.
That’s right – the deaths of animals such as Cecil ranks much higher as a concern than lives of kids with cancer.
Last summer, the Empire State Building, which has lit the Manhattan skyline in the past to honor Gay Pride Week, Chinese New Year, and even the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, refused repeated requests to light up in honor of pediatric cancer awareness.
This year appears to be no different.
One review on the Empire State Building page just two weeks ago lambasted the realty group for their seeming lack of priorities.
I think it’s appalling that the Empire State Building with not go Gold for Pediatric Cancer Awareness but will light up for every other trendy thing that comes around. When do we light up to celebrate the Kardashians ??? because I’m sure that’s coming up! ESB you’re a disgrace to NYC!
The initial request for the group owning the building to honor pediatric cancer victims was first brought to our attention last summer.
Little Cole Stoddard told his dad, Tony, something that will probably tear your heart to pieces like it did his dad. The 5-year-old said “I’m not going to grow up to do anything.” Not long after, Cole died from a vicious form of brain cancer.
Stoddard put in a formal request with the Empire State Building asking to go gold for one night to raise awareness for pediatric cancer research.
But, the Empire State Building said no, simultaneously crushing Tony’s promise to son that his life would mean something. Other young cancer patient parents are now rallying around the Stoddards.
Other parents began posting pictures of their loved ones on the Empire State Building Facebook page, only to have those posts and pictures deleted by the group running the page.
The group held steadfast in their denial of pediatric cancer patients, saying they simply couldn’t accommodate every request. Yet they managed to find two days to honor Democrats in an attempt to get the DNC to locate their convention to the city, an attempt at wooing which ultimately failed.
And they somehow made last minute changes for a lion as well.
The social media campaign to get the Empire State Building to react hasn’t been as prevalent this year. However, Jamie Macchia, also known as Miss New York, made a plea on Facebook last week.
An organization called Frankie’s Mission also claims the building is still refusing the request to ‘Go Gold’ from various organizations.
— FrankiesMission (@FrankiesMission) August 6, 2015
During last summer’s campaign, the Empire State Building claimed that they only accept applications for lighting requests from organizations and not individuals.
The problem with that explanation lies in the fact that three separate ‘organizations’ were rejected for the same lighting request, on official company letterhead.
Malkin Properties owns the Empire State Building and their principle organizers created the Empire State Realty Trust in 2013. The group is partially owned by Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
The Day reported on this previously in 2010:
A quick review of the attorney general’s most recent financial statement with the Connecticut Office of State Ethics shows that his wife, Cynthia Malkin, indeed has an interest in Empire State Building Associates LLC, which was created in part by her father in 1961, when he and other investors acquired a master lease on the landmark building.
They bought the underlying land in 2002 with a $61 million mortgage, what has likely turned out to be a shrewd investment.
So it turns out it is Blumenthal’s in-laws who own the Empire State Building and a whole lot of other real estate, according to the financial disclosure filing, which does not assign any specific value to the holdings.
We contacted Senator Blumenthal’s office several times and have received no response to the families being denied their requests to have the Empire State Building go gold.
Activists for Cecil the Lion however, get noticed.