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West Hartford Man Climbs New York Times Building, Unfurls Banner

Posted by whforums on July 9, 2008

A 29 year old who is being portrayed as a “West Hartford man” (or a “West Hartford activist”) by local and national media climbed the New York Times building this morning and unfurled a banner reading “Bin Laden’s Plan” (apparently the name of the man’s book and website).

Link to several news reports, as well as some images of the building (which seems pretty climbable, as skyscrapers go) after the jump.

The man apparently studied Al Qaeda and Bin Laden for some time (one report says he claims to have predicted 9/11), seemingly devoting much of the past 10 years to this work. So you have to wonder if his actions this morning are:

  1. Hard core activism that reflects his genuine concern for the future of our nation
  2. Hard core guerrilla marketing for his book and website
  3. A sign of someone who’s not terribly well

It obviously takes some real guts to decide you’re going to climb a skyscraper, but it might take even more guts to see an ethical imperative and decide to act on it in a large scale, public way. I mean, who among us, trapped in the tedium of tea kettles, “TPS Reports,” laundry and lawn mowing, would have the courage to act as this man has acted? I don’t mean to romanticize him too much, because god knows I don’t “condone the climbing of skyscrapers or other public buildings.” Yet there’s something in the extremity of his action that calls to attention — and perhaps challenges — the degree to which each of our lives is publicly staid.

Of course, the real question around here, assuming the gentleman in question is still a resident of West Hartford, would be “Did he vote for or against the budget?”

WTIC story (via the AP)

New York Times story

WABC story

A close up of the NYT building:

The NYT building from a distance

photo credit
photo credit

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